ST. JOSEPH, Mo. - Franklin Pierce University, led by two-time Division II national player of the year Johannah Leedham
and her 34 points, rolled past Arkansas Tech
77-62 on Tuesday, setting up a Final Four matchup with Fort Lewis College at 5 p.m. MDT today.
The Ravens led by 20 or more points for the better part of the second half, until a 15-4 run pulled the Golden Suns as
close as 64-53 with seven minutes to play.
Leedham, however, answered that run with a momentum-killing 3, and Franklin Pierce ballooned the lead back into the 20s
before letting its reserves finish off the last minute of the contest.
Aside from Leedham, Jewel White had 17 points and 14 rebounds, and Marielle Giroud also had a double-double with 12
points and 13 rebounds.
Natalia Santos and Ashley Chism led Arkansas Tech with 17 points apiece.
Leedham, this year's national player of the year and only the second player to win the honor twice, is the division's
all-time leading scorer. The Ellesmere Port, England, native is fifth all-time in all-classifications scoring with more
than 3,000 points.
FLC knows Leedham, a 5-11 senior guard/forward, will have to be the focus of their defensive attention, but Skyhawks
coach Mark Kellogg said his squad is well aware that the second-ranked Ravens have more players in the nest.
I think they play really good around her, though," he said. It's not at all a one-woman or one-player show. They have
quality pieces in place around her."
FPU coach Steve Hancock said his team will need to be strong with the ball and work to get into its halfcourt sets in
order to be successful against the relentless press of Fort Lewis.
They're really aggressive," Hancock said of Fort Lewis. They're going to pressure, and they're going to be a constant
pain in the butt.
They're very active out of their 2-3 zone. They cover a lot of territory. We're going to have to handle the pressure.
If we can get the ball up the court and get into our halfcourt offense, we might be OK," he said.