Lebanon Valley edges out Vassar
Chaklos scores 16 points, dishes out eight assists for Dutchmen
ANNVILLE, Pa. -- A 73-68 win against Vassar moved Lebanon Valley into the second round of the NCAA tournament Friday night.
“This is why we put in the time together. It's a great reward," head coach Todd Goclowski said. "It's wonderful to see our seniors enjoy it and our team come together to really realize some of their dreams that they set this season.”
The Dutchmen played clean, fundamental ball to scratch out the win. Junior guard Tierney Hiltz emerged early on, scoring five points in a seven-point run that gave the team its first lead in the early goings.
Hiltz continued to push throughout the game and ultimately led the team in scoring with 18 points.
The Dutchmen closed the first half with a 35-33 edge on back-to-back baskets from freshman guard Kiely Chaklos and Hiltz.
They opened the second half with a 9-2 run--the largest of the game--led by a layup and an and-one free throw by senior guard Caitlin Murphy. Minutes later, the team held its largest lead of the game at 50-39 with 14:20 to play.
In a game that was evenly matched from the start, the Dutchmen were forced to create separation on foul shots. They shot 9-for-14 from the line in the second half after being fouled just three times in the first. Caitlin Bach was the biggest target, drawing three fouls on the night in the post.
Conversely, LVC committed just six fouls--all in the second half--and surrendered just four points at the free throw line.
“The intensity from the start was tremendous," Goclowski said. "Vassar is very talented. They're very well coached; they were supremely prepared tonight to defend our sets and obviously execute well on offense.”
Chaklos neared a triple-double with 16 points, seven rebounds, and eight assists, and continues to put up big performances in big spots.
“She's so good. As a freshman, she stays so composed on the court in big games," Hiltz said. "She played well against Widener [in the conference finals]. The numbers show here how well she played, but she leads us out there as a point guard.”
“It's great to see her game grow at the end of the year," Goclowski said. "She's no longer a freshman, and she's playing with a little bit more bounce in her step and a little more savvy.”
Junior center Renee Fritz scored 14 points and shot a perfect 4-for-4 on foul shots. Bach scored eight points with a team-high 13 rebounds. She finished with 10 offensive rebounds, setting a new career high. Both contributed to the 26 total points that the team scored in the paint.
“Some teams have one player you focus on. With us, you can't focus solely on one player,” Hiltz said.
Brittany Parks led Brewers scorers with 22 points. Cydni Matsuoka wasn't far behind with 20 points. The duo combined to shoot 18-for-29 (62 percent).
The Dutchmen will face Mount Saint Mary, winners of the first game, Saturday night.