Nova Southeastern rallies from slow start to defeat Delta State in Round of 16
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- With Monday night’s 78-56 win against No. 3 seed Delta State, Nova Southeastern (23-8) was crowned South Region champions.
NSU started out cold, while Delta State made its first four shots and moved ahead early at 12-4. The Sharks then went on a 13-3 run to take their first lead 17-15 at the 9:29 mark. The spurt was capped by a layup by Danielle Robinson, who led the team with 20 points on the night.
Robinson also made the last points of the half, giving the Sharks an eight-point lead heading into the locker room. The lead was eight again when Meixandra Porter made her first basket, a 3-pointer early in the second half.
Delta State cut it to four (38-34) with two baskets, the latter by DSU’s leading scorer Seneca Walton. Immediately, Robinson buried her first three to push NSU back ahead by seven, and for the next four minutes, the Shark lead hovered in single digits.
It was still only a six-point game 49-43 with 13:10 left. From then until the 2:54 mark, NSU outscored the Lady Statesmen 23-4 with seven points coming from Robinson and six from Porter.
Besides Robinson’s 20, Taylor Buie had 16 on 6 of 8 shooting, while Tailor Jones also had 16 (6 of 9 from the field), along with team highs of eight rebounds and five assists.
The Sharks overcame Rhandi Ball’s region tournament-high 28 points on 14 of 21 shooting, while Walton was held to four points and eight rebounds after recording double-doubles in both DSU wins leading up to the championship. The Lady Statesmen ended their season at 21-10.
Walton and Ball from DSU and the Sharks’ trio of Porter, Buie and Jones made up the South Region All-Tournament Team. Porter averaged 16 points in the three wins, Buie was at 15.7 (16, 15 and 16, respectively), and Jones was named Most Outstanding Player at 13 points, 8.3 rebounds and 5.7 assists per game.