Hempstead, N.Y. - Old Dominion's Jackie Cook made a layup with 2.7 seconds left to break a tie and propel the Monarchs to an 81-79 victory over Hofstra in a Colonial Athletic Association matchup on Sunday afternoon at the Mack Sports Complex.
Junior forward Shante Evans paced Hofstra's offense with her 13th double-double of the season and scored 16 of her 31 points in the second half, but the Pride couldn't prevent Cook from banking a shot off the glass in the final moments. Freshman guard Andreana Thomas' desperation three-pointer before the buzzer didn't touch the rim as time expired.
Hofstra, which erased a 19-point second half deficit in the final minute, fell to 16-6 and 8-3. Evans grabbed 10 rebounds whiles notching her first 30-point game of the season. Senior guard Nicole Capurso registered 19 points and tallied six assists as the Pride split the regular-season series with ODU.
Four ODU players scored in double figures to help the Monarchs improve to 8-15 and 5-6.
Mairi Buchan scored a career-high 20 points and ODU received complementary scoring from Crook (15 points), Tia Lewis (15), and Ashley Betz-White (11) led the Monarchs.
Senior guard Candice Bellocchio finished with nine points and six rebounds and senior center Marie Malone scored 10 points, including a crucial late basket. Evans scored in double figures for the team-leading 21st time this season, shooting 11-of-16 from the field.
Hofstra, which trailed as much 19 just 1:43 into the second stanza, tied it in the final minute. After junior forward Candace Bond, who hauled in six rebounds for the Pride, fouled out with 3:55 left, Hofstra mounted a late run on Evans' put-back off the glass. After a defensive stop, Thomas hit a left-elbow mid-range jump shot to cut it 77-74 and prompting ODU to use its last time out with 2:08 left.
On the next trip down, Bellocchio grabbed the rebound on the defensive end and helped set up another, Thomas driving layup for an 8-0 Hofstra run with 1:48 left. Lewis then hit a jumper to give ODU a 79-76, though Hofstra stormed right back with an Evans layup with 1:02 on the clock.
Down by one, Hofstra generated another crucial defensive stop. Junior Deven Green came up with the most important rebound of the game and drew the foul when Cook was called for the foul after forcing Green out of bounds with 27 seconds left.
Green missed the first free throw but hit the second to tie it at 79, setting up Cook's dramatic basket to clinch the outcome.
Despite going down by double digits, the Pride kept chipping at the lead, mounting a 9-0 run capped by Thomas' layup to cut the Pride's deficit to 73-66 with just more than seven minutes to go. ODU used its second-to-last timeout and the respite worked to the visitors advantage when Buchan drew a foul and hit both free throws to make it a three-possession game again at 75-66.
ODU rode a strong start throughout the course of the game. The Monarchs connected on its first four three-point attempts to help fuel a 14-0 run capped by Tia Lewis' three-point play for a 21-8 edge just six minutes in.
A separate 9-0 run, capped by Hall's layup, propelled ODU to an 18-point first-half lead. Capurso and Bellocchio added back-to-back layups before Hall drove for another basket , sending Hofstra into the locker room trailing 48-32.
Buchan, who scored 14 of her total points in the opening half, connected on her first four three-point attempts for a career high. Evans also gave Hofstra a formidable threat on the low blocks, nearly accounting for half of the Pride's total first-half offense with 15 points and five rebounds.
With her first basket 1:54 in, Evans became just the 10th player in Hofstra history to eclipse 1,400 career points for the Hofstra program. With 1,429 career points, she moved past Betsy Lange (1989-92)for the ninth-most points in team history.
Bellocchio also reached a milestone, playing in her 124th career game to move into sole possession of second place on the team's all-time list. She needs just two more to tie Cigi McCollin's record, which was set in 2007.
Hofstra will embark on a two-game Virginia-based road trip, starting Thursday with a 7 p.m. contest at VCU.