MONTGOMERY - Amber Tylly scored 15 points and WVU Tech hit nine 3-point goals, then survived a rally Saturday to beat Voorhees 60-57 in the women's semifinals of the Association of Independent Institutions tournament at the Baisi Center.
Tech will take on Robert Morris-Illinois in the championship at noon today. The winner gets an automatic bid to the NAIA national tournament, March 13-19 at Frankfort, Ky.
Tylly gave the second-seeded Golden Bears (16-13) a 54-39 lead on a 3-pointer with 7:00 left, and Amy Gardner's layup at the 3:31 mark pushed the lead back out to 14 at 59-45. But the Bears scored a single point the rest of the game, allowing the Denmark, S.C.-based Tigers to make the game interesting.
Daivenna Kemp fired a 3-pointer with 15 seconds left to get the Tigers (15-16) within a score, and Gardner fumbled the inbounds pass, giving Voorhees the ball with 10 seconds left. After Tech called a timeout, it defended Kierra Patterson well enough at the 3-point arc that her shot came up well short of the rim.
Gardner rebounded and it didn't matter that Nia Nolan missed the front end of a one-and-one at the other end. The Tigers couldn't control the rebound quickly enough to get a good shot off at the buzzer.
Nolan scored 11 points with seven assists, while Gardner also scored 11. Gardner and Tylly both went 3 of 7 from 3-point range.
Patterson led Voorhees with 12 points. Tech held the Tigers to 33.9 percent shooting and outrebounded them 47-40.
Ashley Segers' jumper tied the game at the 1:14 point, and then CSUSM's Alexandria Alvarado committed an offensive foul with 43 seconds left. Segers was fouled with 19 seconds left, but hit just one free throw for a 63-62 lead.
But the Cougars (13-9) missed their chance to take back the lead as Sherika Miller turned the ball over with 5 seconds left. RMU's Danish Cole was fouled and made two free throws, and Cassie Damyanovich missed a trying 3-pointer at the buzzer.
Cole led top-seeded Robert Morris (18-12) with 18 points, hitting 10 of 11 from the line. Danielle Cooper had 14 points and 17 rebounds to lead CSUSM.