FRISCO - Championship Sunday in the Lone Star Conference tournament is one of the best days of the year. The LSC is home to some of the best men’s and women’s basketball in NCAA Division II, and the conference will be well represented in next week’s NCAA tournament.
WBB: West Texas A&M 67, Texas A&M-Commerce 66
Entering Sunday, West Texas A&M had won a record 15 LSC tournament titles. Number 16 was an instant classic after Lauren Taylor hit two free throws with 4.7 seconds remaining in regulation and the last-second 3-pointer from Texas A&M-Commerce bounced off the rim to give the Lady Buffs a 67-66 victory.
The Lady Buffs earn the automatic bid to the NCAA tournament and will find out the location and their seed during next week’s NCAA South Central Regional Sunday night.
“I’m beginning to lose adjectives for this team,” WT coach Josh Prock said. “I don’t think either Lauren or I was nervous. This is the fourth time in my career that I’ve been in that situation, and all four times, the kids have stepped to the line and made the free throws. Again, it goes to the mentality of these kids and how tough they are.”
“That’s a tough one to swallow,” Texas A&M-Commerce coach Jason Burton said. “We competed, and we played well enough to win the game. Our girls played hard enough and well enough to win the game, and we are in a position to make a run at a national championship.”
Karley Motschenbacher was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player after willing her team to victory with 20 points and nine rebounds.
“I wasn’t doing too hot during the first three quarters,” Motschenbacher said. “But it was a mentality thing. I knew that it was now or never, and I knew I could change the game if I trusted myself.”
LSC Player of the Year Dyani Robinson led the Lions with 19 points in the program’s final game at the NCAA Division II level before transitioning to Division I next year. The loss was the third consecutive in the LSC tournament title game.
However, the Lions are expected to be the host to begin the NCAA tournament.
“The message now is the same message it’s been all year,” Burton said. “We have what it takes to win, and we haven’t lost back-to-back games this year. We’ve come back a better team after a loss, and we will look ourselves in the mirror and find a way to get better.”