Western Carolina Ekes Out Win at SoCon Tournament
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - The Georgia Southern Women's Basketball Team held Western Carolina to 22 percent shooting and only five baskets in the second half, but the Catamounts eked out the win, 48-42, in the first game of the 2011 Southern Conference Tournament. The Lady Eagles finish their season at 12-18 and with a 9-11 mark in the SoCon.
Meredyth Frye (Fredericksburg, Va.) and Krista Tate (Atlanta, Ga.) both scored 13 in the contest with Samantha Williams (Kingsport, Tenn.) picking up six rebounds for the share of the game high. WCU's Emily Clarke scored 12 of her game-high 14 points in the first half and Kaila'Shea Menendez finished the game with 11 points.
Georgia Southern pulled within three points, 45-42, as Williams, who had scored her 500th career point early in the second half, hit a short jumper from the lane with 23.1 seconds remaining. Three Western Carolina free throws in the last 17 seconds provided the final margin.
"They did a good job defensively, and we never did get into a rhythm," said Lady Eagles Head Coach Rusty Cram. "We took what they gave us in the first half instead of creating, and that was frustrating. We never got to the rim. In the second half, we started to get to the rim, but we got into foul trouble quickly. We didn't have consistency and we didn't have different people scoring today."
The Lady Eagles made four of their first six shots from the floor in the second half with Tate scoring six of Georgia Southern's first nine points after the intermission. Tate had 10 second-half points and her layup at 15:55 tied the game at 28 all. All-SoCon Freshman team selection MiMi DuBose (Jefferson, Ga.) hit her first basket for the sixth tie of the game at 32-32 and Georgia Southern took its first lead of the second half when DuBose hit another layup at the 10:55 mark for a 34-33 score.
The lead would change four more times over the next six minutes with neither team taking more than a one-point lead during that time frame. After a Tate jumper for a 38-37 GSU lead, a jump ball was awarded to Georgia Southern with 5:29 left in the game, but a turnover gave the ball back to Western Carolina.
On that possession, the Catamounts battled on the offensive glass for the second-chance points and a Lady Eagle foul sent WCU to the line. The first free throw by Catamount Alex Abraham tied the game for the eighth time at 38 all, and her second would give WCU a 39-38 lead. Turnovers on the next five possessions allowed Western Carolina to run off six straight points and the Catamounts held off the Georgia Southern with nine made free throws in the final 3:32. The Catamounts went to the line 22 times in the second half, converting 14 while the Lady Eagles made good on two of four trips to the line in that period.
Georgia Southern shot only 22 percent from the field in the first half, but relied on Frye's seven points from the free throw line and 11 in the first half to stay within striking distance. Neither team shot the ball particularly well in the first 10 minutes of the first half. Georgia Southern improved to 30 percent and WCU to 33 percent after a rough start. After the first media timeout, the Catamounts went 8-11 from the field to build a seven-point lead and had six more baskets than GSU at the break.
In the early going, Jamie Navarro (Naples, Fla.) gave the Lady Eagles a 9-6 lead at the 13:39 mark with a three-pointer from dead center. Tate put GSU back up by three, 11-8, with a runner in the lane as the shot clock was about to expire. The Catamounts' Kaila'Shea answered with a bank shot to give WCU a lead it would hold for the rest of the half.
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- Category: Women's Basketball
- Published on Thursday, 03 March 2011 18:28