Bryan Lady Lions move to NAIA Sweet 16
The Bryan College women’s basketball team woke up Saturday morning with an opportunity to write program history. The Lady Lions took the field at Summers Gym against Pikeville University in the opening round championship game of the 2022 NAIA Women’s Basketball National Championship. The winner would punch their ticket to Sioux City, Iowa, and would move to the Sweet 16. Bryan used overtime to beat Pikeville University 90-86.
Gracee Dishman and Kaitlynn Hennessee combined for 15 of Bryan’s 24 points in the 1st quarter to take the first twelve-point lead. The two teams traded buckets in the second quarter and Bryan entered the locker room at halftime with a 45-32 lead. The Lady Lions knocked down 9 three-pointers in the half to build their lead.
Pikeville responded with a 16-4 run late in the 3rd quarter to tie the game at 58-58. In a 4th quarter home and away, the Bears held a 74-72 lead with ten seconds left, but Gracee Dishman drove and scored a layup to tie the game and force overtime.
Deandra Luna was the overtime heroine for the Lady Lions as she scored nine points, including two three-pointers and three free throws in the final minute to secure the overtime victory with a final score of 90-86. Bryan set a new program record with his 32nd win of the season.
Gracee Dishman led the team with 24 points and 8 rebounds. Kaitlynn Hennessee finished with 19 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals. Deandra Luna added 15 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals. Karli Combs had 9 points and 5 rebounds. Destiny Kassner and Samantha Russell each contributed 7 points.
The Lady Lions will travel to Sioux City, Iowa to play in the NAIA National Sweet 16
Championship. No. 4 seed Bryan will face No. 1 seed Thomas More on Thursday, March 17 at 7:00 p.m. EST.