Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Chan leads way for Lady Bulldogs
JACKSON, Tenn. -- Zeinab Chan scored 20 points and pulled down 10 rebounds as Union, Tenn., won its fifth NAIA women's national championship with a 73-65 victory against Azusa Pacific on Tuesday night.
Chan, the tournament's most valuable player, hit back-to-back field goals as the Lady Bulldogs matched their largest lead of the game and made it 54-49 with 9:17 to play.
"I had to think about not letting my teammates down and go to the basket," Chan said. "We were not doing a good job early defensively and our coach said defense wins games."
Union, which has won the title four of the last six years, increased the margin to 60-49 on back-to-back 3-pointers by Kayla Hudson with 7:40 remaining.
"[Azusa] started to collapse [on Chan] and I was open and it was time to step up," Hudson said. "We work on it in practice and we take what the defense gives us."
Azusa Pacific, playing its first national championship game, pulled to within 68-63 with 47 seconds to play on a field goal by Alex Moore-Porter, who finished with 13 points.
But a field goal by Union's Lavanda Ross, two free throws by Hudson and another by Kaitlin Dudley sealed it for the Lady Bulldogs.
"We finished really strong," Union coach Mark Campbell said. "We rushed shots early and we needed more attack from the foul line."
Kristie Hala'ufia led Azusa with 20 points.