Marquette, UCLA to ‘battle’ for the title

After taking down the nationally number three ranked University of Texas Longhorns on Saturday, the unranked Marquette University Golden Eagles held on to defeat the Gonzaga University Bulldogs, 70-66, to advance to the Battle 4 Atlantis Women’s Tournament final.

The Golden Eagles will face the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Bruins who upset the nationally number 11 ranked University of Tennessee Vols with a dominant 80-63 scoreline earlier. Both games were played inside the Imperial Arena at Atlantis, Paradise Island. The Bruins and the Golden Eagles will play each other at noon today.

The Golden Eagles and the Bulldogs went into their game with perfect 4-0 win/loss records on the line. The Bulldogs came out the gate on a 7-0 scoring run and it looked like they were going to keep their perfect record intact. However, the Golden Eagles called a timeout after that run, at the 8:20 mark, and that calmed them down as it was a tied ball game at 12-12 at the 4:08 mark. The first quarter ended with the Bulldogs up 17-15.

The Golden Eagles continued their resurgence in the second quarter as they outscored the Bulldogs 24-17 in that period, shooting 51.7 percent from the field. The Golden Eagles went into the second half with a 39-32 lead.

At the end of the third quarter, Gonzaga’s guard Kaylnne Truong threw up a shot from the three-quarter court point that went in to send the game into the fourth quarter tied at 54-54, setting up an epic fourth quarter showdown. The Bulldogs could not get it going in the fourth quarter as they connected on just two of their 15 shot attempts from the field. The Golden Eagles did not have any blocks and had only one steal but they made the Bulldogs take difficult shots. They went on to control the quarter and win the game.

The Golden Eagles were led by Chloe Marotta with 18 points. Truong and Bryanna Maxwell finished with 18 points apiece for the Bulldogs.

The Bruins kept their perfect 5-0 season intact as they never looked back after the 8:08 mark of the first quarter. They shot 47.4 percent from the field but they also went 6-for-9 from deep. The Bruins led 26-18 at the end of the first period and cruised the rest of the way.

At the end of the first half, the Bruins were 10-for-17 from deep and held a 46-36 lead. A 19-11 third quarter advantage allowed the Bruins to pull away from Tennessee. It was where they had they biggest lead of 20 points.

Battle 4 Atlantis women’s action continues after the championship game with the final game of the tournament getting underway at 7:30 p.m.

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Simba French

Simba joined The Nassau Guardian in 2012 as a technical producer for Guardian Radio 96.9 FM. He joined the Editorial Department as a sports reporter in 2018. Simba has covered a wide range of sports stories, including the 2018 CARIFTA in Nassau, Bahamas. Education: College of the Bahamas, BA Media Journalism

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