Furman's 3-pointer with 2.5 seconds left completes rally past UNCG
For UNCG coach Wendy Palmer's postgame comments, click here.
GREENSBORO, N.C. – UNCG's Breonna Patterson hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 33.7 seconds left, but Furman's Raegan Thompson answered with a long 3-pointer of her own with just 2.5 seconds left to lift the visiting Paladins to a 66-64 win over the Spartans at Fleming Gymnasium on Saturday.
On the ensuing inbounds play, UNCG (3-14, 2-7 Southern Conference) got the ball into the hands of Patterson, its leading scorer, but the sophomore was unable to get a shot off before the final horn sounded.
Thompson's big 3 capped a wild second half that saw Furman (10-8, 6-3 SoCon) rally from a 16-point deficit.
"Very tough loss," UNCG coach Wendy Palmer said. "We played a good 20 minutes the first half. Unfortunately, the game is 40 minutes long and we got tired down the stretch and started playing outside of ourselves a little bit, doing things that we don't typically do in practice or in games. I tried to let them play through some moments, and it's just unfortunate that we came out on this end of the score, because they really played a really good half. Probably the best basketball I've seen them play this year."
UNCG led 44-28 with 16:32 left in the game before the Paladins finally got their offense in gear. A Thompson layup started a 23-5 run that saw Furman takes its first lead of the game on Kaitlin Murphy's 3-pointer with 7:06 left.
A Jarae Savage free throw and a Patterson 3 put UNCG back on top at 53-51, but Ayanna Randolph answered with a 3 from the corner of Furman's next trip down the floor to restore the Paladins' one-point lead.
The back-and-forth continued with Sidnei Harmon and Murphy trading layups before the Spartans turned in a 6-0 run and seemed to reclaim momentum. Jazz Weaver, Patterson and Harmon had consecutive buckets as UNCG grabbed a 61-56 advantage with 3:53 to go.
Furman again had an answer, reeling off seven straight points of its own to make it 63-61 with just 53 seconds left. After a timeout, UNCG found Patterson on the wing for the open 3 and Patterson drained it, giving UNCG a 64-63 advantage.
The Spartans played solid defense as Furman had one last possession, and the Paladins were forced to call a timeout with 13.2 ticks left. With time winding down, Murphy sent a low pass to Thompson at the top of the key. Thompson bobbled and dropped the pass but recovered to get off the winning shot with less than three seconds to go as Furman escaped with the unlikely win.
UNCG dominated the first half in building its big lead. Sophomore Janae' Stevenson scored the Spartans' first eight points and personally led Furman 8-2 less than five minutes in.
The Spartans continued to build their lead, holding Furman to an 0-for-14 start from the floor. Nearly 10 minutes had elapsed before a Thompson 3-pointer accounted for the Paladins' first field goal.
UNCG led comfortably for the entire first half, pushing its lead to 13 points on a Savage layup that made it 34-21 with 2:04 to go in the first. The Spartans would take that lead into halftime.
Furman was shooting just 17.2 at the break (5-for-29) but stayed in the contest on the strength of an 8-for-10 effort from the free throw line in the first half as the fouls started to mount for UNCG.
Natalie Headley took over for the Spartans to start the second half, scoring four of UNCG's first five baskets as the Spartans' lead ballooned to a game-high 16 points at 44-28 before the Paladins started to heat up.
During Furman's run, Stevenson and Dayshaun Richbow picked up their fourth fouls, forcing both to the bench.
Stevenson and Patterson shared team-high honors with 12 points each, while Headley had 11. Harmon flirted with a double-double with seven points and eight rebounds, while Savage pulled down a career-high 12 rebounds and blocked the first two shots of her career. She also added six points.
"That kid is just gutsy," Palmer said of Savage. "She continues to work hard and do anything I ask her to do. She's good at finding little things in the game that she can really excel at, and tonight, it was rebounding."
Thompson had a game-high 16 points off the bench for the Paladins, while Murphy had 13 and Brittany Hodges had 11 points and 10 rebounds.
After shooting 51.6 percent from the floor in the first half (16-for-31), UNCG was just 12-for-32 (37.5 percent) in the second half. Furman, meanwhile, shot 53.3 percent (16-for-30) after halftime.
UNCG left eight points on the table at the free throw line, as the Spartans were just 5-for-13 from the stripe (38.5 percent). Furman, which entered the game 20th nationally in free throw percentage, improved on its season mark with a 15-for-18 effort (83.3 percent).
For the second straight game, UNCG out-rebounded its opponent. The Spartans had 38 boards to Furman's 36.
UNCG hits the road for its next contest, making the short trip to Elon for a 7 p.m. tip Monday.
FURMAN 66, UNCG 64
FURMAN (10-8, 6-3 SoCon)
Raegan Thompson 6-11 0-0 16; Kaitlin Murphy 5-14 2-2 13; Brittany Hodges 3-9 5-6 11; Lashana Booker 2-5 1-2 7; Alexis Peterson 1-2 3-4 5; Teshia Griswold 2-6 0-0 5; Sarah Durdaller 1-3 2-2 4; Ayanna Randolph 1-3 0-0 3; Janice Roberts 0-5 2-2 2; Brigid Morrissey 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 21-59 15-18 66.
UNCG (3-14, 2-7 SoCon)
Janae' Stevenson 6-6 0-0 12; Breonna Patterson 5-7 0-0 12; Natalie Headley 5-11 1-3 11; Sidnei Harmon 3-7 1-2 7; Jazz Weaver 3-7 0-0 6; Jarae Savage 2-10 2-4 6; Dayshaun Richbow 2-7 1-2 5; Sarah Folwell 1-3 0-0 3; Nneka Awuruonye 1-5 0-2 2; April Carson 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 28-63 5-13 64.
Furman........................ 21 45 - 66
UNCG.......................... 34 30 - 64
3-point goals--Furman 9-20 (Raegan Thompson 4-9; Lashana Booker 2-5; Ayanna Randolph 1-1; Teshia Griswold 1-3; Kaitlin Murphy 1-2), UNCG 3-6 (Breonna Patterson 2-2; Sarah Folwell 1-3; Dayshaun Richbow 0-1). Fouled out--Furman-None, UNCG-None. Rebounds--Furman 36 (Brittany Hodges 10), UNCG 38 (Jarae Savage 12). Assists--Furman 13 (Kaitlin Murphy 8), UNCG 16 (Sidnei Harmon 3; Natalie Headley 3). Total fouls--Furman 10, UNCG 14. Technical fouls--Furman-None, UNCG-None. A-406
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