Lincoln (Pa.) earned itself a slice of history and a second game at the CIAA womens tournament.
Tuesdays 50-46 win against J.C. Smith at Time Warner Cable Arena was the Lions first postseason victory as a Division II program. That fact wasnt lost on the players, who celebrated with hugs after the final horn.
Weve written a lot of history at Lincoln for us this year, Lions coach Jessica Kern said. Not leaving after the first day means a whole lot to our school and our program.
Guard Cynthia Johnson had a huge say in keeping the Lions out front, scoring a game-high 22 points with 9-of-14 shooting and seven rebounds. Even with nine turnovers, Johnson came up with big shots when the Lions (10-17) needed them to stay in front of the Golden Bulls (8-18), who finished with a losing record for the first time since the 1996-97 squad went 12-17.
Cynthia had a great game for us tonight, Kern said. She had a couple of tough games here where she didnt let the game come to her, but she did tonight. She stayed in her comfort zone.
Johnson C. Smith trailed throughout but was within striking distance most of the way behind Kaylah Gholsons 17 points.
The Golden Bulls pulled within 41-40 on a pair of NyJae Dickerson free throws with 6 minutes, 40 seconds left, but Johnson, the only Lion to reach double figures, scored five of the next six Lincoln points to put the win on ice.
I have the mindset of attacking and pushing the ball, Johnson said. Coach always says advance the ball, push the ball, look ahead. If I see an open spot, thats where Im headed. If I see someone open, Im going to give them the ball so I feel like Ive accomplished something.
The Golden Bulls struggled on offense, hitting 25.9 percent (14-of-54) of their shots. Their top scorer, senior guard Brittany Dorsett, finished with two points on 1-of-9 shooting.
Kaylah Gholson paced J.C. Smith with 17 points with 5-of-11 shooting and scored 11 points after the break to go with LaKendra Wilkersons 10.
Lincoln advanced to play Fayetteville State at 3 p.m. Wednesday in the quarterfinals.
Other tournament games
Saint Augustines 67, Chowan 63: The Falcons (12-14) trailed 36-29 at halftime before rallying to defeat the Hawks (5-21). Saint Augustines will play Elizabeth City State at 1 p.m. Wednesday.
Virginia State 57, Livingstone 50: The Trojans (13-13) overcame a 26-21 first-half deficit to defeat the Blue Bears (8-17). Virginia State will take on Virginia Union at 11 a.m. Wednesday.
Winston-Salem State 73, Bowie State 56: The Rams ousted the Bulldogs and advanced to play Shaw at 5 p.m. Wednesday.
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