Kennesaw State basketball is officially over. The fourth-seeded Owls were no match for No. 1 seeded Stetson University, falling 78-48 on Wednesday, March 8 in the conference tournament.
KSU fell behind early to 12-0 to start the game. The Owls couldn’t get into a rhythm, scoring only seven points in the first quarter and trailing 41-24 at halftime. Kennesaw finished the half shooting 32 percent from inside the arc and scoring only nine field goals on 28 attempts.
The third quarter was no different, with Stetson outscoring KSU 24-9. The Hatters shot 53 percent from the field and held the Owls to just two field goals in the period.
KSU’s only high point of the game came with less than eight minutes left in the fourth quarter when senior guard Deandrea Sawyers became the program’s all-time leading scorer during its Division I era. Sawyers holds the scoring title with 1,380 total points.
“I thought Deandrea did a great job for us during the second half of the season,” said head coach Agnus Berenato. “She started to understand myself and my staff, and we started to understand her. I’m really proud that Deandrea broke the school record.”
“She came in and re-wrote the history book,” Berenato said.
Sawyers also led all scorers with 20 points, shooting 35 percent on the night. Redshirt junior guard Kelly Dulkoski was the only other Owl scoring double digits with 10 points.
Stetson won the rebounding battle by a 49-28 margin and outscored the Owls 42-12 in the paint while shooting 45 percent from the field. The Hatters’ defense also played a key role in their victory, limiting Kennesaw to just 27 percent shooting. The Hatters will host Florida Gulf Coast University in Sunday’s championship game.
“Stetson is a really good team,” Berenato said. “We were really excited as an organization to be here in the semifinals and to represent Kennesaw State in the ASUN Championship.”
In Beranato’s first season coaching the Owls, she has led KSU to a five-game winning streak in the conference, earning the team its highest ASUN Championship seed.