The Howard Payne Lady Jackets overcame a 10-point deficit with 9:02 remaining, as well as 33 percent shooting and 17 turnovers, to stun Concordia, 53-49, Saturday afternoon at the Brownwood Coliseum for their fourth consecutive victory.
The Lady Jackets (11-6, 10-4) moved within a half-game of second-place UT-Dallas (13-3, 10-3) and remained two games back of American Southwest Conference leader UT-Tyler (14-3, 12-2) with Saturday’s win.
Defensively, Howard Payne held its first opponent of the season below 50 points as Concordia (8-9, 6-8) shot just 29 percent and tallied a mere six points during the final 12:14 of the contest. The Lady Jackets also owned a narrow edge in rebounds, 46-45.
Britani Gattis led the Lady Jackets with 16 points followed by Sarah Van Remmen and McKinley Meyer with 12 points apiece, Danyel Bradley with seven, Kalin Hanna with four and Shardena Hudson with two points.
Concordia received 10 points from Voneshia Williams, seven from Shelby Stidham, six from both Ashley Ward and Tyler Compton, five from Celeste Laredo, four from both Kia Love and Domonique Liddell, three from Ally Terry and two points apiece from Margaret Milling and Shelby Dixon.
Trailing 43-33 with just over nine minutes left, HPU eventually drew even at 45 on a pair of free throws by Van Remmen with 2:44 remaining. Concordia did not score for a stretch of 7:57 which aided in the Lady Jackets’ rally.
Knotted at 47 with 1:10 left, Gattis scored in the lane to push the Lady Jackets in front, 49-47, for the first time in the second half. Gattis tacked on two free throws with 22 seconds left to stretch the lead to two possessions, 51-47.
Concordia closed the gap to 51-49 with 17 seconds left, but Bradley extended the lead to three points, 52-49, with a free throw with 12 seconds to go. Concordia’s last gasp went awry with six seconds left, and Gattis tacked on one final insurance free throw to ice the game with three seconds remaining.
HPU closes its five-game home stand at 5:30 p.m. Thursday against Hardin-Simmons (6-10, 6-7).