BARBOURVILLE, Ky. - Union rallied down the stretch to cap the regular-season with a 66-60 Appalachian Athletic Conference victory over visiting Bryan (Tenn.) on Saturday.
The win improves the Lady Bulldogs to 19-9 overall and 12-6 in conference play, locking up the No. 3 seed for next week's league tournament. Bryan falls to 17-11 overall and 11-7 in the AAC and will be the fifth-seeded team.
The AAC Tournament begins Wednesday with the championship game set for Saturday, Feb. 23. The four-day event will be held at the MeadowView Marriott Conference Resort & Convention Center in Kingsport, Tenn. The official seedings and bracket will be announced Sunday.
Union led by as much as 10 points in the first half, but Bryan used a 20-12 spurt to cut the margin to 34-32 at the break. Play was tight to open the second half as the lead changed hands five times was was tied three times during the first 6:29 of the period.
Down 44-43, the Lady Lions reeled off eight straight points to claim a 51-44 cushion with 9:24 to play. Union battled back using 3-pointers from Alyson Roberts and Haley Perkins to help pull the Lady Bulldogs even at 57-57 with 5:28 to play. It was Perkins' second trey of the run which knotted the score for the sixth and final time.
A bucket by Lydia Nash and a 3-pointer from Laura Perkins pushed Union ahead 62-57 with 3:22 remaining. Kelsey Brooks hit a 3-pointer, brining Bryan within two with 2:57 to play. However, Lindsey Waters and Amber Taylor both hit two free throws in the winding moments to seal the 66-60 Lady Bulldog victory.
Waters led Union with her league-leading, 11th double-double of the season. The senior center scored 16 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. She also had six steals, four blocks and four assists. Taylor was the only other Lady Bulldog to score in double figures, finishing with 12 points.
For Bryan, Morgan Burdette led the way with 16 points and 11 rebounds with Kilgore and Jenna Ray each contributing 12 points.
Prior to the game, Union honored its three senior players as they played their final home game of their career. The three are Waters, Laura Perkins and Jennifer Thomas.