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Providence women top Cumberlands in NAIA opening round

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Posted at 6:09 PM, Mar 12, 2021

OMAHA, Neb. -- The University of Providence women's basketball team is now one step closer to getting to the Round of 16 of the NAIA national tournament after knocking off the University of the Cumberlands Patriots 83-72 on Friday.

The Argos were red hot to open the game and kept the Patriots relatively stifled, building a 13-point, 20-7 lead through the first quarter.

The second quarter was much kinder to the Patriots as they were able to narrow the gap slightly to enter the half trailing 40-31.

The Argos recorded only 20 points in the paint on Saturday but were able to shoot 39% from beyond the arc for 36 of their 83 points. Emilee Maldonado led the way, making 5 of 9 3-point attempts en route to a game-high 22 points. She added five rebounds and four assists in the win. Reed Hazard made three 3s and scored 10 points, and Brooklyn Harn sank two more 3s and finished with nine points.

Parker Esary scored 21 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the floor for the Argos, who outscored Cumberlands 20-19 in the third quarter and 23-22 in the fourth to preserve the win.

The Patriots got a team-high 17 points from Carla Covane, who made 9 of 12 free throw attempts.

Providence will play Dakota State (S.D.) at 4 p.m. (MT) on Saturday, with the winner clinching a spot in the Round of 16 in Sioux City, Iowa, where the remainder of the tournament will unfold March 18-23.