03.20.13: The CCRI Lady Knights basketball team continued play in the NJCAA Division II Women's Basketball Tournament at Illinois Central College in East Peoria, IL on Wednesday evening. The No. 10 seed Lady Knights (25-5) were in the "Elite Eight" Quarterfinal vs. No 2 seed Lady Hurricanes of Louisburg College (29-3). CCRI lost to Louisburg 83-58. With the loss the Lady Knights can no longer win the National Title, but are still alive in the tournament and can finish as high as fifth place. The Lady Knights' record is now 25-6. The Lady Knights will face Highland Community College (28-6) from Highland, KS Thursday afternoon at 4:00pm EST (3:00pm CST).
Louisburg was the tournament's No. 2 seed and showed why they had earned that distinction quickly in the game. The Lady Knights came out flat and the Lady Hurricanes capitalized on that every opportunity they could. Louisburg jumped out to a quick lead which they were able to extend to 10 points early in the game. The Lady Hurricanes kept the pedal to the metal and the lead quickly grew to a 50-19 halftime lead for Louisburg. Louisburg shot an impressive 50% from the field while CCRI was only making 23% of their shots in the first half. The Lady Knights played the Lady Hurricanes closer in the second half but never really threatened the Lady Hurricanes as the No. 2 seed went on to win by the final score of 83-58.
Leading the way for the Lady Knights was Co-Captain Jahira Smith (Brooklyn, NY) who scored 15 points with seven rebounds, three steals, and two blocked shots. Smith now has a CCRI record 1,044 points for her career. The only other Lady Knight in double-figures was Ahnyyah Jackson (Hackensack, NJ) with 13 points, six rebounds, and five assists. Lexi Barros (New Bedford, MA) added nine points and six rebounds while Co-Captain Jess Randall (Warwick, RI)added seven points and a steal and Nyjah Porcher (New Britain, CT) added 10 rebounds. Louisburg's Olivia Gaines led all scorers with a game-high 20 points.
Head Coach Kate Lynch commented after the tough loss: "When a team shoots 50% and you shoot 28% from the floor for the game, you can't make mental errors and you can't come out flat; not at this level."
The No. 10 seed Lady Knights will face No. 6 seed Highland CC Thursday at 4:00pm EST (3:00pm CST). To watch the game follow this link to NJCAA TV:
If the Lady Knights win they will play in the 5th/6th place game Championship Saturday at 3:00pm EST (2:00pm CST).
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England’s largest comprehensive community college, enrolls nearly 18,000 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.