Last Second Trey Gives Chattanooga Escape Win
“It was a great game tonight. It was college basketball at its best and both teams played extremely well,” said head coach Rusty Cram. “We came out and made them play the game we wanted them to play and they in turn made us play the game they wanted us to play. I’m proud of the team and their performance tonight.”
The last second loss dropped Georgia Southern to an even 7-7 on the year and 2-3 in league play. Chattanooga improved to 10-6 overall and 5-2 in SoCon action with the escape win.
Georgia Southern came out strong, pressuring the Lady Mocs and forcing an early UTC timeout in the opening frame at 17:11. Carolyn Whitney (Dublin, Ga.) nailed a long trey to put the Lady Eagles ahead 3-2 at the Moc break. Whitney nailed her second trey following one from Megan Rollins as the teams traded the advantage five times through the first media timeout. Candice Ivy (Roswell, Ga.) ignited the floor draining three consecutive buckets pushing GS in front 12-11 at the 13:47 marker.
Despite pulling down 15 rebounds through 12 minutes, UTC was held to 40.0 percent shooting at the third media timeout with both teams knotted at 20-apiece. Using a 6-3 run to the fourth media, Georgia Southern pulled out in front 26-23, holding the largest lead by either team of five points at 26-21 in the midst. The Eagles continued the run adding another five unanswered following the timeout for a 31-23 edge. Erin Helton snapped a two-minute Moc scoring drought with a three-pointer with 1:15 left. Helton’s trey would close out the half with Georgia Southern holding a 31-26 halftime lead.
GS’s intensive defense forced eight UTC turnovers while keeping the Lady Mocs to 32 percent shooting from the floor at half. Shanara Hollinquest held the throne with eight points and seven rebounds, while Whitney led all scorers with 10 points.
Picking up two fouls early in the game, J'Lisia Ogburn (Dublin, Ga.) returned to the floor to start the second half and quickly put in four points to give GS a nine-point control at 35-26. Four minutes of scoreless play from the floor was ended with a Hollinquest bucket that pulled UTC to within five points, 37-32. Kayla Christopher hit a jumper drawing the score to 43-39 as Samantha Williams (Kingsport, Tenn.) connected on a trey.
Christopher came on fire in the second half putting in 11 points for the Lady Mocs tying the score at 51-51 with 7:06 on the clock. An Ogburn jumper put the Eagles back on top but a Tenisha Townsend ‘3’ quickly returned control to the Lady Mocs, 54-53.
With 2:48 on the clock, Tate hit one in the paint for a 55-54 GS lead. A key turnover by the Mocs gave GS possession but the Lady Eagles could not connect. With a missed field goal on UTC, the ball was tossed around on Chattanooga’s side before Christopher hit her fourth trey of the half with 3.3 seconds on the clock to put UTC in front, 57-55.
The Mocs keyed in on Whitney after the first half and held strong against her. She remained the Eagles’ leading scorer with 10 points to close the game, but added four assists in the final 20 minutes. Williams scored nine points off three treys.
The leading scorer in the Southern Conference, Hollinquest drained 19 points as Christopher was close behind with 18 points off four three-pointers. With the defense, Georgia Southern forced 14 Chattanooga turnovers converting for 13 points. The Eagles scored 21 points off the bench, but UTC put in 22 points in the paint.
“Looking ahead, we are playing College of Charleston next and they are tied for first place in the conference right now. We found out tonight that we can play with the best,” stated Cram. “We need to get refocused with our day off tomorrow and come out ready to play on Saturday.”
The Georgia Southern Lady Eagles return to Statesboro, January 9 to play host to College of Charleston on a double-header day with the men’s team challenging Western Carolina later in the afternoon. Tip-off for the Lady Eagles is slated for 1 p.m. and the men take the court at 3:30 p.m. on Dollar Day in Hanner Fieldhouse.
- Category: Women's Basketball
- Published on Monday, 04 January 2010 21:12