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Petit's 24 Leads Simon Fraser Past Seattle Pacific
Play Video Suzanna Ohlsen (11) outscored Marie-Line Petit 25 to 24, but Petit's team emerged with an eight-point win (Photo by Dan Levine)
Suzanna Ohlsen (11) outscored Marie-Line Petit 25 to 24, but Petit's team emerged with an eight-point win (Photo by Dan Levine)

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

LACEY, Wash. – Guard Marie-Line Petit scored 22 second-half points as fourth-seed Simon Fraser pulled away in the final two minutes to defeat fifth-seed Seattle Pacific 87-79 completing the opening round of the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Women’s Basketball Championships at Marcus Pavilion Wednesday night.

The Clan (18-8) will play top-seed Montana State Billings (23-6) in Friday’s second semifinal at 7:30 p.m.  MSUB will come into the contest as the No. 1 ranked team in the NCAA West Region, while SFU is ranked third in the latest regional poll.

Friday’s first semifinal will pit No. 2 seed Western Washington (17-9) against sixth-seed and host Saint Martin’s (18-10).  The Saints qualified for the semifinals by upsetting third-seed Alaska Anchorage 58-48 in Wednesday’s first women’s game.

Seattle Pacific’s loss dropped the Falcons to 18-9 on the season.  SPU is ranked sixth in this week’s regional poll and is still hoping to earn an at-large berth for next week’s NCAA Division II West Regional tournament.  The field for the regional and the site will be announced Sunday at 7 p.m. Pacific time on ncaa.com.

Petit came into Wednesday’s contest averaging just seven points on the season and had only two at halftime before making 6-of-7 second-half shots, including 3-of-4 three-pointers to finish with 24 points.  She was 7-of-8 from the foul line, all in the second period.

The Clan also got 16 points from Erin Chambers, 11 from Katie Lowen and 10 each from Chelsea Reist and Meg Wilson in the victory.  Wilson posted a double double hauling in 13 rebounds.

Suzanna Ohlsen nearly doubled her 13.9 scoring average, leading Seattle Pacific with 25 points. That ties the GNAC single-game tournament scoring record set three years ago by SFU's Nayo Raincock-Ekunwe. 

SPU's Katie Benson added 17 points and a team-high eight rebounds.  Also in double figures for the Falcons were Hannah Rodrigues and Betsy Kingma with 11 points apiece. 

Petit had nearly half (22 of 49) of SFU’s points after intermission, including two free throws to give her team a 47-46 lead at the 16:31 mark of the second half.

Later she hit a three-pointer to put the Clan up for good 52-51 with 13:35 remaining.  Another trey with 11:40 left by Petit doubled SFU’s lead to six points at 57-51.

Seattle Pacific, however, was still within three points (64-61) until Petit started an 8-0 run with a pair of foul shots at 6:28.  All eight of those points came at the charity stripe as Chambers hit four in a row before Lowen added two more to make it 72-61 with 4:54 left.

The Falcons climbed back to within three (74-71) on a basket by Ohlsen with 1:58 left.  But, once again Petit was clutch hitting another three-pointer for a 77-71 lead with 1:35 left on the clock and SPU was unable to get closer than six in the final 95 seconds.

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