EVANSVILLE, Ind. -- The Crimson Hawks erased a 10-point deficit midway through the second half and were nearly perfect from the foul line down the stretch in a 72-68 comeback win against Tarleton State in the semifinals of the 2015 NCAA Division II National Championships on Thursday night.IUP will now advance to the program's second national championship game to play Florida Southern at 3 p.m. on Saturday.
Down 49-39 with 10:04 left to play, the Crimson Hawks started chipping away. A three-pointer by Shawn Dyer served as the catalyst of a 12-0 run in the next 4:34 to put IUP on top 51-49 with 5:30 to play.
After a layup by Damion Clemens tied the game at 51-51 on Tarleton State's next possession, the Crimson Hawks reeled off another seven consecutive points, including a layup and free throws by Daddy Ugbede and a three by Dyer.
The Texans (31-4) were able to cut it to five at 60-55 on a pair of foul shots by Mo Lee with 2:35 to play, but IUP quickly got its lead up to double-digits at 66-55 with under a minute left on six successful free throws by Dyer, Brandon Norfleet and Devante Chance.
Tarleton State tried to catch up, rushing down the court and drilling three-pointers on three consecutive possessions, but the Crimson Hawks continued their success at the line to close out the 72-68 semifinal win.