Spartans' six-game winning streak ends with 72-63 loss at Chattanooga
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – UNCG put four players in double figures and hung with defending Southern Conference champion Chattanooga, but the Lady Mocs got the big shots to fall when they needed them in handing the Spartans their first league loss of the season, 72-63 on Saturday.
The loss snapped a six-game winning streak for the Spartans, who fall to 8-6 overall and 5-1 in the league. Chattanooga improved to 7-6 overall and 4-2 in the SoCon with its fourth straight win. Even with the loss, UNCG remains alone in first place in the SoCon.
For the Lady Mocs, Whitney Hood led the way with 18 points and 13 rebounds for the game's lone double-double. Kylie Lambert had 14 points and Kayla Christopher and Tenisha Townsend had 12 each. Townsend dished off a career-high eight assists and hit four 3-pointers.
The Spartans stayed within striking distance throughout the game but could never get a prolonged run going. Down 54-41 with 9:45 left, UNCG turned in a quick 6-0 spurt to get it back to a more manageable seven-point deficit with just over 8 minutes to play. The Spartans would eventually cut it to five points on a pair of Leigh free throws with 4:38 to go, but a couple of Christopher free throws and a Bailey Dewart 3-pointer put the Lady Mocs back up by 10.
UTC would eventually stretch it out to 12 points at 67-55 with 2:25 left, but a Leigh 3-pointer and a Floyd free throw made it an eight-point game with just under 2 minutes to go. Chattanooga again had the answer, as Lambert hit the last of the Lady Mocs' 11 3s for the dagger.
That was the theme most of the evening, as it seemed that every time UNCG got close, Chattanooga got the crucial shot it needed to maintain some distance.
Smith hit a 3-pointer for the game's first basket just 23 seconds in, but the Lady Mocs answered with a 14-1 run to open up some early breathing room. Richbow got a bucket to fall at the 13:37 mark to break a 6-minuute field goal drought, and the Spartans clawed their way back into it from there.
UNCG got it down to five points on Leigh's driving layup with 5:55 to go in the first, setting up a frenetic 3-minute stretch in which the teams combined for five 3-pointers. Christopher answered Leigh's layup with a 3, but Leigh hit one on the other end to make it a six-point game again. Meghan Downes drained a long 3 on Chattanooga's next possession, but Smith countered with a jumper. Townsend hit the Lady Mocs' third straight 3 on the other end, but UNCG again had an answer, with Smith canning her second triple of the game to keep the Spartans within striking distance.
Chattanooga would briefly bump its lead back up to double digits at 37-27, but the Spartans closed the half with buckets from Floyd and Janae' Stevenson and held the Lady Mocs without a field goal for the final 2:42 to get within six at the break, 37-31.
The Lady Mocs opened the second half with five straight points and UNCG went scoreless for nearly 3 minutes as UTC again got its lead into double digits. The Spartans would get no closer than five points the rest of the way.
UNCG had a season-low seven turnovers and had more field goals than the Lady Mocs (27-26), but the 11 3s were the difference for Chattanooga. UNCG hit five.
The Spartans are back on the floor Monday at Samford to wrap up its stretch of five games in 11 days. Opening tip is set for 1 p.m. Eastern time.
NOTE: Floyd scored her 900th career point on a jumper with 1:06 left in the contest. She finished at 903 and needs just 97 to become to 22nd 1,000-point scorer in school history.
CHATTANOOGA 72, UNCG 63
UNCG (8-6, 5-1 SoCon)
Amanda Leigh 4-13 2-2 12; Dayshaun Richbow 5-9 1-2 11; Monique Floyd 5-11 1-4 11; Kendra Smith 4-11 0-0 10; Janae' Stevenson 3-7 0-0 6; Sidnei Harmon 2-4 0-0 4; Jazz Weaver 2-4 0-0 4; Breonna Patterson 1-3 0-0 3; Nneka Awuruonye 1-3 0-1 2; Sarah Folwell 0-2 0-0 0; Brey Dorsett 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 27-69 4-9 63.
CHATTANOOGA (7-8, 4-2 SoCon)
HOOD, Whitney 7-17 4-4 18; LAMBERT, Kylie 5-10 3-4 14; TOWNSEND, Tenisha 4-7 0-0 12; CHRISTOPHER, Kayla 4-12 2-4 12; DEWART, Bailey 3-7 0-0 9; HALL, Taylor 2-3 0-0 4; DOWNES, Meghan 1-3 0-0 3; BRAMBLETT, Destiny 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 26-59 9-12 72.
UNCG.......................... 31 32 - 63
Chattanooga................... 37 35 - 72
3-point goals--UNCG 5-17 (Amanda Leigh 2-7; Kendra Smith 2-6; Breonna Patterson 1-1; Brey Dorsett 0-1; Monique Floyd 0-1; Dayshaun Richbow 0-1), Chattanooga 11-23 (TOWNSEND, Tenisha 4-7; DEWART, Bailey 3-6; CHRISTOPHER, Kayla 2-4; DOWNES, Meghan 1-2; LAMBERT, Kylie 1-4). Fouled out--UNCG-None, Chattanooga-None. Rebounds--UNCG 38 (Monique Floyd 7), Chattanooga 42 (HOOD, Whitney 13). Assists--UNCG 12 (Dayshaun Richbow 5), Chattanooga 18 (TOWNSEND, Tenisha 8). Total fouls--UNCG 12, Chattanooga 8. Technical fouls--UNCG-None, Chattanooga-None. A-1685
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