Woerner's heroics lift CUA to last-second win in New York
KINGS POINT, N.Y. – Sophomore Jill Woerner delivered a dramatic ending on Friday evening as she drilled a three-pointer with 0.7 seconds remaining to lift CUA to a thrilling 68-65 win at Merchant Marine Academy. The victory is CUA's third straight and improves the Cardinals to 11-4 overall and 3-1 in the Landmark Conference.
CUA had led 61-51 with 4:23 to play, but Merchant Marine went on a quick 11-2 run capped by a Rebecca Grimes three-pointer at the 1:30 mark to pull to within one at 63-62. Olivia Norris then hit a free throw for the Mariners to tie things at 63, setting up an exciting final minute.
On CUA's next possession Woerner got to the hoop for a layup to put the Cardinals on top 65-63 with 39 seconds to go. The Cardinals then forced a turnover and looked like they could seal the win, but Holly Janicki's jumper was off the mark, giving the ball back to Merchant Marine Academy with 21 seconds on the clock.
Following a Mariners timeout, Tamara Kaileh got the ball down low and scored to tie things at 65. Overtime seemed like a possibility but Woerner had other plans as she took a pass from Rachel Ferri and let fly from the left wing. The sophomore's shot hit nothing but the bottom of the net and following a last-chance desperation heave by the Mariners, CUA had pulled out a thrilling road win.
Woerner scored a game-high 22 points for CUA and went a perfect 5 of 5 at the foul line, while Janicki continued her strong play for the Cardinals with 16 points, including four trifectas. Senior Kerri Confrey handed out five of CUA's 13 assists and as a team the Cardinals once again registered double-digit steals, with 10.
Kaileh scored 18 points to lead the Mariners, while Janay Weathers netted 15 and Alicen Heinrich added 10. Weathers also pulled down 10 boards to complete the double-double and Kaileh dished out five helpers.
After a tight couple of minutes to begin the game, CUA opened up a nine-point lead with 11:31 to play before halftime on Ferri's bucket. Woerner's pair of free throws at the 7:42 mark helped open up a ten-point advantage for the Cardinals, while Janicki's three a minute later gave the visitors a comfortable 15-point advantage.
Grimes splashed a three for the Mariners with 24 seconds left on the first half clock, but Woerner hit a jumper just before the buzzer sounded to send the Cardinals into intermission ahead 37-28.
CUA will look to make it four in a row on Saturday as the Cardinals travel to New Jersey to take on the Drew Rangers. Action gets underway at 4 p.m.