PLYMOUTH – A furious rally by the Ancilla College women’s basketball team fell just short as NJCAA #20 Muskegon Community College escaped with a 66-65 victory on Wednesday at the LifePlex.
Meghan Brown scored 21 points for Ancilla (7-16, 5-10 MCCAA Western), who still clinched a playoff spot despite the loss.
Shalana Murray added 14 points and 20 boards while Naomi McNeal chipped in with 13 points on the night.
Sarah Burr led Muskegon (22-7, 13-3 MCCAA Western) with 22 points.
“I thought our kids played their hearts out and left everything on the floor,” said Ancilla women’s basketball coach Dave Liverance. “We battled the 20th ranked team to a one-point game and it should show our kids that we can play with anyone.”
The Lady Chargers trailed by 10 in the second half, but two free throws by Katrina Vannoy with under a minute to go gave them a one-point lead.
Muskegon answered right away as Paris Thomas drove straight to the basket and laid the ball in to reclaim the advantage.
Ancilla had one last chance to win the game. Naomi McNeal drove the length of the floor and drew contact, but was unable to draw a foul as time expired.
“I’m proud of the way we conducted ourselves,” said Liverance. “There were a few heated moments and our kids played with the right frame of mind.”
The Lady Chargers resume play on Feb. 26 when they travel to Centreville, MI, to play MCCAA Western Conference rival Glen Oaks Community College. Tipoff is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. EST.