BOSTON—The Heidelberg University women’s basketball team erased a 20-point deficit in the second half and sophomore guard Emily Giel (Burton/Burkshire) made the game-winning free throw to send the Berg to a 70-69 win against Emmanuel (Mass.) College at the Jean Yawkey Center on the first day of the EC Saints Invitational in Boston, Mass. Giel finished with 10 points and passed for a team-high five assists.
The Berg (1-1) faces William Paterson (N.J.) University tomorrow in the championship game of the tournament at 3 p.m.
In addition to Giel, sophomore guard Kathleen Phillips (Sandusky/St. Mary’s) poured in a game-high-tying 18 points on eight-of-19 shooting and added three steals, transfer sophomore guard Megan Miller (Tiffin/Columbian) tallied 15 markers on six-of-15 shooting and hauled in seven rebounds, and junior guard Jordan Ickes (Wooster/Triway) scored 10 points to lead the Berg.
Emmanuel led by as many as 20 points in the first half, as Heidelberg shot just 21.2 percent (seven-of-33) from the field, turned the ball over 17 times, and was outrebounded by 20 during the opening period.
The Saints began the second half on a 8-4 run to take a 41-21 lead at the 16:25 mark when Victoria Johnson made a jump shot.
Phillips made two straight three-pointers to close the gap to 41-27 with 15:26 to play, as the Berg began its comeback. Following two more field goals from Phillips and a pair of triples from Giel, suddenly Heidelberg was looking at a six-point deficit at the 12:29 mark when EC led, 43-37.
Both teams played through a see-saw battle during the middle of the second half until the Berg pulled to within three points at 51-48 at the 9:00 mark as sophomore forward Kyra Dorney (Fairborn/Greenon) hit a layup.
The Saints extended their lead to seven points on two occasions, with the last coming with 4:24 on the clock when Beanna Ockimey knocked down a three-pointer to give EC a 63-56 advantage.
Heidelberg then went on a 13-4 run to take its first lead of the game at 69-67 with just 35 seconds remaining when Miller buried a trifecta.
A foul by Miller sent Johnson to the charity stripe where she made both free throws to force a 69-69 tie with 21 seconds to play.
EC sent Laura Benvenuto into the game, who then fouled Giel with five seconds left. Giel missed her first free throw attempt, but connected on the second, sending Heidelberg to victory.
The win snapped a 16-game losing streak dating back to last season.
The Berg shot 40.6 percent (28-of-69) from the field and created 17 points off 32 EC turnovers. Junior forward Casey Bishop (Orrville) scored just three points, but hauled in a team-high nine rebounds.
The Saints were 41.9 percent shooting (26-of-62) and made just 15-of-24 free throws. Fiona O’Dwyer match Phillips with a game-high 18 points on eight-of-17 shooting and corralled nine caroms, while Johnson notched a double-double with 14 points and a game-high 10 rebounds.¬¬¬ Meghan Kirwan and Ockimey tallied 11 points and 10 points, respectively.