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Women's Hoops Eliminates Eastern Michigan, 58-56

Kathrin Hess shoots over Eastern Michigan's Nikki Knapp to score the game-winning basket.

Kathrin Hess shoots over Eastern Michigan's Nikki Knapp to score the game-winning basket.

March 20, 2004

NCAA First Round - March 20, 2004
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AP Sports Writer

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Kathrin Ress made a backdoor layup with 12 seconds left and Boston College hung on to beat Eastern Michigan 58-56 Saturday in an NCAA women's first-round game.

Third-seeded Boston College (26-6), the Big East tournament champion, will meet Ohio State (21-9) in the second round on Monday night. The sixth-seeded Buckeyes beat West Virginia 73-67 in the opening game at their own St. John Arena.

With the score tied and only 15 seconds left, Ress took a pass and banked a shot off the backboard, the ball hesitating on the back of the iron for an instant before falling through.

After a timeout, 14th-seeded Eastern Michigan (22-8) - playing its first game ever in the NCAA tournament - got the ball to Ryan Coleman with 4 seconds left. Her hurried 3-point shot from the top of the key at the buzzer was wide.

Ress led Boston College with 16 points, Amber Jacobs had 13, and Clare Droesch added 11 points, 11 rebounds and five assists.

Coleman scored 15 points and Melis Ulker had 12 before fouling out for Eastern Michigan, the Mid-American Conference tournament champions.

Boston College broke out to a 22-4 lead in the opening 5:13, hitting its first nine shots including all four 3-point tries. The Eagles didn't miss a shot until Jessalyn Deveny misfired on a 3-pointer from the right corner at 14:16 mark. They followed that with a jumper by Brooke Queenan that pushed the lead to 20.

Jacobs made three shots from behind the arc during the early surge, and all five players scored.

Stunned by the early flurry, Eastern Michigan regrouped but the Eagles came right back with a 13-0 run of their own. Like Boston College, five players contributed with Marion Crandall, Erika Ford and Sarah VanMetre each hitting 3s to cut the lead to 24-17 by the 9:13 mark.

BC led 34-24 at the half and expanded that to 42-29 in the opening 5? minutes.

Once again, Eastern Michigan roared back. A 10-0 run was capped by Coleman's two free throws with 4:49 left that cut the lead to 51-50. After Ress made a rebound follow, Eastern Michigan took the lead for the first time on baskets by Ford and Coleman.

Deveny's 3-pointer with 3:02 left put BC ahead 56-54, with Nikki Knapp tying it with 40 seconds left on a short shot off an assist from VanMetre.

BC has won eight straight and 12 of 13. The Eagles are in the NCAA tournament for the third consecutive year.

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