INDIANAPOLIS - Junior Therese Montano banked in a deep three at the horn from the left wing to send the Bellarmine University women's basketball team to a 75-72 upset victory at 15th-ranked University of Indianapolis on Saturday night in Great Lakes Valley Conference action.
Montano's shot overturned a furious rally by the Greyhounds, who erased a six point Bellarmine (15-4, 5-3 GLVC) lead with one minute left, tying it at 72-72 on a layup by Kristin Turner with three ticks left. The Knights quickly inbounded the ball to Montano, who dribbled up the left side and shot the game winning runner from 28 feet out.
After the game, Chancellor Dugan said last second shots are a scenario that they practice often, "We do a drill at every walk-through where we are in a similar situation. Admittedly we don't convert those as much as I'd like, but we hit it when it counts."
Montano was one of five Knights who hit double figures as the Mercy Academy graduate had 11 points, hitting 3 of 6 treys, to go along with 3 rebounds and 3 steals.
Both teams struggled in the opening half to get any offense running with UIndy holding a 28-26 lead at the break. Bellarmine was called for 11 first half fouls while the Greyhounds picked up just 4. "We really weathered the storm in the first half," said Dugan. "Only being down by two at halftime was huge because I knew if we could just hit some shots that we could have a chance late."
Dugan's squad used a 13-0 run five minutes into the second period to turn the tide into their favor with Betsy Goodin and Darion Hutchinson each scoring 4 in that spurt. Hutchinson reached double-figures for the fourth straight game with 14 while Goodin ended with 10 of her own.
Turner, who averaged 15.5 ppg heading into Saturday, began to take the game over late though as the senior scored 21 of her game-high 26 points after the break. With Turner and the Greyhounds attacking the basket, the fouls again mounted on the Knights, forcing Dugan to use her bench late.
Preaching to her team that they always need to be ready, Dugan received big play from the smallest member of her team, 5-4 Kylee Hamilton. Although the junior tallied just 2 points and 2 assists, Dugan praised the guard's game, "Kylee was a stud out there, we don't win a game like this without someone from our bench making plays. She's put together a few great games lately."
The other big contributor off the bench was senior forward Allison Osen who had 14 points and 7 rebounds, both team-highs. For the third game in a row, the Bellarmine reserves were clutch, outscoring UIndy's subs 49-19.
Bellarmine will now turn their attention to one of the biggest weeks of the season. On Thursday, Dugan will coach against her former team Southern Indiana then the Knights will return to their home court to battle Kentucky Wesleyan on Saturday for Homecoming.
(Source: Bellarmine University Sports Information Department.)