BARTLESVILLE, Okla. – The Southeastern Oklahoma State trio of Katie Webb, Kamryn Cantwell and Briley Moon carried the offense as the Savage Storm won their first GAC Championship title, 71-52, against Arkansas-Monticello on Sunday from the Bruin Fieldhouse.
Moon’s 22 points on 8-of-9 shooting led Savage Storm (22-7). She made her first eight shots of the game. Cantwell, the Tournament MVP, finished with 17 points while Webb added 11 points and seven assists. In the Savage Storm’s three GAC Championships, they combined to score 180 of their 242 points.
Leading 15-9 after the opening period, the Southeastern offense heated up in the second quarter as they shot 69.2 percent and connected on 4-of-5 3-pointers to extend their lead to 38-26. Cantwell scored 12 of her 17 in the opening 20 minutes. Southeastern went 7-for-11 from the 3-point arc in the half.
In the second half, the Blossoms (20-11) only cut the margin to single digits on two occasions. Leading 53-44 at the start of the fourth quarter, the Savage Storm scored the first 11 points to put the game out of reach. The Savage Storm secured their fifth NCAA Tournament appearance and the third under head coach Darin Grover. He previously led the Savage Storm to the tournament in 2009 and 2011.
For the week, Cantwell averaged a tournament-leading 22.7 points to go along with 6.0 rebounds per game. She shot 52.6 percent from the floor and went 6-for-11 from the 3-point arc. Moon shot added even more efficient shooting as she connected on 65.5 percent of her tries in averaging 19.0 points per game. Webb, the league’s Player of the Year led the team with 4.3 assists per game in addition to scoring 18.3 points per game.
The Savage Storm claimed the league’s automatic bid to next week’s NCAA Tournament. The Storm will play Emporia State Friday, March 13 at 7:30.