APU’s magical season comes to an end after a 73-60 loss to Indiana University of Pennsylvania
Coming into Tuesday, Azusa Pacific’s women’s basketball team was still riding an unbelievable high from its previous victory. However, their magical run came to an end in Colombus, Ohio this morning as the Cougars lost to Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP) 73-60.
IUP commanded the initial minutes of the game. At the end of the first quarter, IUP led 14-9 and that lead increased to 37-27 at the end of the half. APU shot 34 percent (11-32) from the court, while IUP shot 44 percent (16-36).
Despite the underwhelming first half, the Cougars entered the second half with an impressive 10-0 run that knotted the score at 37. However, IUP answered that run with a 17-4 run of their own, which made the score 54-41 at the end of the third.
In order to battle back into the game, APU needed a dominant showing and certainly a little bit of luck. Unfortunately, they weren’t able to generate the same luck as the previous game. IUP remained consistent in the fourth quarter and played defensively, strolling to a 13-point victory. They will now advance to the Final Four of the tournament while APU’s unbelievable season has come to an end.
Guards Rachel Bozlee (13 points) and Daylee Hanson (14 points) led the Cougars in scoring. Forward Laura Pranger continued her great defensive play, accumulating three blocks and two steals in the contest. Guard Savanna Hanson led the team with nine rebounds and four assists.
Although the outcome was not what the team and APU community were hoping for, their season and West Regional Championship are still remarkable feats. The bracket championship was the first in program history, and their 28 overall wins are tied for second with the 2015-16 campaign for most wins since 2010.
Another major accomplishment was their PacWest title, which was backboned by their program-leading 21 conference victories. With a roster that only holds two seniors, the team is full of young talent that can make this team contenders for years to come, and expectations are already high for next season and beyond.