Lady Tribs roll into Final Four

MCC's Sierra Green.
MCC's Sierra Green.

HARRISON, Arkansas - The MCC women's basketball team advanced to the NJCAA Division 2 national semifinals with an emphatic 82-53 win over St. Louis Community College Wednesday evening.

The Tribunes (28-3) used a 15-0 run at the end of the first half to take control of the game. MCC moves on to the semi's, where they will face the winner of Johnson County and Kalamazoo Valley at 7 p.m. Friday evening.

The teams battled back and forth through the first quarter, with the Archers taking a 19-15 lead after the first 10 minutes. St. Louis led 30-29 after a free throw with 3:44 left in the half. That's when the Tribunes took command.

Shalix Hines and Torrie Cash each knocked down a pair of free throws to put Monroe up 33-30. Hines and Erica Abitante followed with 3's, and Hines added a layup as the lead ballooned to 11. 

Cash then knocked down another shot from long range with 31 seconds left to give MCC a 44-30 lead at the break. Monroe outscored St. Louis 29-11 during the second quarter.

This was all done despite a 17-9 deficit on the glass during the first half. The Tribunes did, however, force 16 turnovers over the first 20 minutes.

Monroe continued its assault in the third quarter. Jaynelle Robinson converted offensive rebounds into putbacks on consecutive possessions to put MCC up by 20. The lead was 18 entering the fourth.

Sierra Green then delivered the dagger in the final frame. The freshman guard sandwiched a pair of 3's around two free throws to increase the lead to 24 and put the game away.

Hines finished with a team-high 16 points to go along with four steals and three assists. Green finished with 13, Cash scored 12, and Robinson tallied 10. Lanay Rodney chipped in with nine points and seven rebounds.

Monroe forced St. Louis into 27 turnovers on the night. MCC also finished 11-for-25 from long distance.