Women's Hoops Stifles College of Charleston, 64-56
GREENSBORO, N.C. – The UNCG women’s basketball team limited former Southern Conference rival College of Charleston to 29-percent shooting from the field on the way to a 64-56 non-conference victory over the Cougars Saturday afternoon at Fleming Gymnasium. The win was the 200th for the program inside the facility.
“I am extremely happy with the intensity with which we played today,” head coach Wendy Palmer said. “We had a great few days of practice and it showed in this game. It was an exciting way to kick off the homestand.”
The victory marks the third straight for the Spartans (3-2), representing the first such winning streak for the program since the 2010-11 season. UNCG also held an opponent under 60 points and under 30-percent shooting for the first time this campaign.
Senior forward Janae’ Stevenson (Columbia, S.C./Eau Claire) notched her third-straight double-double, posting 10 points and 10 rebounds while sophomore guard Lucy Mason (Stone Mountain, Ga./Chamblee Charter) filled up the stat sheet to the tune of a game-high 18 points, eight free throws made, four assists and two steals. Senior guard Breonna Patterson (Greensboro, N.C./Dudley) also reached double figures offensively with 10 points in 25 minutes of playing time. Freshman forward Jade Scaife (Ft. Washington, Md./Archbishop Spalding) was a factor on the glass – racking up nine rebounds to go along with six points.
The Blue and Gold did an excellent job in the rebounding battle, out-dueling the Cougars (2-3) 48-42 as every Spartan who played secured at least one rebound. UNCG finished at 37 percent from the field – knocking down 19 of their 51 attempts – while the visitors hit just 21 of their 73 shots to end up at 29 percent. Both teams struggled to take care of the basketball, committing a combined 53 turnovers of which 29 were credited to the Spartans. However, UNCG managed to score 24 points off of College of Charleston’s miscues. The Blue and Gold also posted 22 points in the paint to the Cougars’ 16.
The Cougars scored the first four points of the contest thanks to a pair of layups by Deidre Ramer, but freshman guard Bailey Williams (Harrisonburg, Va./Spotswood) hit a three-point field goal at the 18:10 mark to make it a one-point game. College of Charleston would go up by as many as eight after a three-pointer by Alyssa Frye with 12:49 on the clock, but a layup by Stevenson cut the lead to 15-13 with 10:57 remaining in the half.
A pair of foul shots by Afreyea Tolbert pushed the Cougar advantage to nine at 23-14 – the biggest of the half – at the 8:57 mark, but the rest of the period belonged to the Spartans. An 11-2 run by UNCG was capped off by two free throws by Patterson that tied the score at 25 with 2:57 left to go before layups by sophomore guard Jazmine Missouri (Kensington, Md./Academy of the Holy Cross) and Scaife allowed the Blue and Gold to go into the locker room with a 29-25 halftime cushion. In all, UNCG held Charleston scoreless for the final 5:18 of the stanza.
Scaife scored five points and corralled six rebounds in the first 20 minutes to lead the Spartans while Frye had eight for the Cougars. A pair of Charleston players pulled down six rebounds. The Cougars shot just 26 percent in the period (10-of-39) while UNCG fired at a 38-percent clip (12-of-32). The teams combined for 31 turnovers in the half.
College of Charleston quickly tied the game at 30 early in the second half as the Cougars began to press on defense. A pair of free throws by Stevenson put UNCG back in front briefly before a layup by Ramer knotted the score with 17:40 on the clock. Mason tallied a steal and subsequently hit a triple to make it 35-32, but Erin Hall answered with one of her own to deadlock the score once more.
The Spartans began to make a move, clamping down on defense and holding the Cougars scoreless for the next four minutes. Meanwhile, four different UNCG players scored as part of a 10-0 run which put the Blue and Gold in front 45-35 with 12:54 to play. A layup by Stevenson at the 8:54 mark afforded the Spartans their largest edge of the game at 49-37, but Charleston began to rally.
An 11-2 run over the next five or so minutes, capped off by a Breanna Bolden layup, made things interesting as the Cougars drew within 51-48 with 4:14 remaining. Mason would hit two foul shots on two separate occasions at the line to make it 53-48, but a three-point play by Frye kept College of Charleston close – trailing just 53-51 at the 3:02 mark.
The Cougars would ultimately be unable to complete the comeback as UNCG kept Charleston off the scoreboard via some solid defense and hit four free throws to extend its lead to 57-51 with only 1:16 left in the contest. Mason and Missouri salted the game away for the Spartans at the line – stretching the advantage all the way to 63-53 with 18 seconds to play – before Hall hit a prayer of a three-pointer and Mason added a free throw to account for the final score.
UNCG continues its seven-game homestand Wednesday, Nov. 27, with a non-conference game against VCU. Tipoff at Fleming Gymnasium is slated for 1 p.m.