By Matt Green
No. 1 Lady Hawks (15-11) vs. No. 4 Southeastern (18-13)
Tuesday, March 5; 7 pm; Lakeland, Fla.
LAKELAND, Fla. -- The Shorter women's basketball team tips off National Christian College Athletic Association postseason play tonight when it takes the floor against Southeastern University (Fla.) in the semifinals of the NCCAA Division I South Region Tournament.
The Lady Hawks (15-11), seeded No. 1 in the South Region, will take on the fourth-seeded Fire (18-13), the regional tournament hosts who downed fifth-seeded Pensacola Christian 67-41 in last night's quarterfinals.
Shorter, as the top seed in a seven-team tournament, received a bye in the quarterfinal round. The winner of the Shorter-Southeastern matchup advances to Wednesday's championship game slated for a 6 pm start.
Junior guard Emma Loucks paced Southeastern in last night's win with 15 points while freshman Kristen Scholl added 11 points and junior forward Danielle Bradley-Wilson chipped in with seven points and 10 rebounds.
The Fire jumped out to a 14-0 lead on Pensacola Christian and never looked back, building an 18-point lead by halftime and holding Pensacola Christian to 26 percent shooting.
Shorter hopes to get off to a good start of its own against Southeastern, an NAIA institution that is a member of The Sun Conference. The Lady Hawks enter NCCAA postseason play for the first time in school history.
The Lady Hawks earned the region's top seed after a strong inaugural campaign as an NCAA Division II and Gulf South Conference member. Shorter finished the regular season in a tie for fourth place in the GSC standings with a 10-8 league mark -- the Lady Hawks swept both conference leader Union and third-place finisher North Alabama as part of those 10 conference wins.
Juniors Karisma Boykin and Kristin Nash lead a balanced Shorter offensive attack as the Lady Hawks' lone players averaging double figures. Boykin does a bit of everything for Coach Vic Mitchell's squad, scoring 11.8 points a game while pulling down 4.7 rebounds and dishing out 3.6 assists each time out.
Nash is putting up 10.2 points a game and also averages 3.6 boards.
Sophomore Ieshia Alexander has come on strong in the latter stages of the season and comes in a just over nine points a game while leading the Lady Hawks in 3-point field goal percentage at 32 percent. Senior forward Shelby Farrer is having one of her best seasons, averaging 8.3 points and 7.9 rebounds.
Shorter fans can watch tonight's action by following the video link provided here. There will not be a Shorter radio broadcast for tonight's game.