ASHEVILLE, N.C. – The Presbyterian College women’s basketball team shot 7-of-8 from the free-throw line in the final quarter to win a close game against UNC Asheville on Tuesday night at Kimmel Arena. With the win, the Blue Hose split the Big South series and improve to 8-14 on the season and 6-5 in conference play. The Bulldogs fall to 11-11, 5-6.
Players of the Game
PC was paced by Rebecca Walker’s 12 points, a season high. The senior forward shot 5-of-11 from the floor and 2-for-2 from the line. She pulled down three rebounds and added an assist.
Khaila Webb paced UNC Asheville with 11 points. The junior guard went 3-for-7 from the floor, including 1-for-1 from beyond the arc, and was a perfect 4-for-4 from the charity stripe. She just missed out on a double-double with nine boards and picked up four assists and a steal.
Stat of the Game
Both teams’ leading scorers were held to single-digit points. Chatori Major, who scored 31 points against the Blue Hose back on January 24 and entered the game averaging 16.3 points per game, finished with five points. Cortney Storey came in averaging 11.9 points per game, also totaled five points on the nights.
How It Happened
UNC Asheville started off with layups by Major and Senora Dengokl. Walker then put PC on the board with a hook shot. After Dengokl pushed the Bulldog lead to 6-2, Aianna Kelly drained a three-pointer from the right side and Allie Wagner hit a long jumper to give PC the lead. KJ Weaver converted a pair of free-throws to wrestle back control. Kacie Hall then made a trifecta from the left corner and Webb scored a late bucket as the teams ended the opening quarter tied 10-10.
The teams tied the score again at 12-12 before Hall made her second deep ball of the night early in the second quarter. The Bulldogs refused to go away, though, as the teams continued to trade the lead throughout the second 10 minutes of action. Wagner converted from long range and got a layup to fall to help the Blue Hose to a 24-19 lead at the 3:00 mark. Zip Scott closed the gap with a three-pointer late, but PC went into the locker rooms with a narrow 24-22 lead.
The Blue Hose shot 9-of-23 (39.1 percent) from the field, 4-for-12 (33.3 percent) from beyond the arc, and 2-for-2 (100.0 percent) from the line in the opening half. At the break, PC held the advantage in points off turnovers (7-5) and outscored UNCA’s bench (17-5). The teams were tied in points in the paint (8-8). The first 20 minutes featured five ties and as many lead changes.
Dengokl tied the game again, 24-24, to start the third quarter, but Walker followed with a pair of layups. Dengokl then shot 1-for-2 from the line and Webb drained a long ball from the top of the key for yet another tie. UNCA took over the lead as Webb went to the charity stripe and made both of her free shots. Bronaza Fitzgerald then capped off the 8-0 Bulldog run with a bucket and Storey ended the PC drought with her first points of the game. The junior guard earned a trip to the line and sank both of her shots to tie the game at 32-32 with 4:19 left in the quarter. Kelly knocked down a three-ball from the top of the key, kicking off a 10-0 PC run. Following a Webb jumper, Kaycie Reffner made a free-throw as PC went into the final quarter in control 43-34.
The fourth quarter started off slow, with UNCA scoring the first basket with a Jessica Wall jumper at the 7:45 mark. The score ignited a 9-0 Bulldog run that tied the game at 43-43 with 4:49 on the clock. Riley Hemm got into the scorer’s column with a 2-for-2 effort from the line, but Weaver followed a missed jumper with the put back. With :41 to play, UNCA sent Walker to the line and the senior forward made both of her shots. The Bulldogs were then forced to send Storey to the line, who went 1-for-2. After UNCA couldn’t get a look at a three-pointer and turned over the ball, Reffner again went to the line, making both shots to seal the 52-47 victory.
- Taylor Petty followed Walker in scoring with 11 points. Wagner chipped in seven points and Kelly and Hall contributed six points each.
- Kelly made her first start of the season and saw 29 minutes of action, a season high.
- PC attempted 44 field goals, tying its season low. The team attempted 44 field goals at USC Upstate on November 14 and at Gonzaga on December 3.
- The Blue Hose shot 17-of-44 (38.6 percent) from the field, 5-of-19 (26.3 percent) from deep, and 13-of-16 (81.3 percent) from the charity stripe.
- PC committed fewer turnovers (11-22) and held the advantage in steals (8-4), points off turnovers (22-5), fast-break points (2-0), and bench productivity (26-9).
PC returns to the Templeton Center this Saturday, February 11 as the Blue Hose host Liberty in the team’s annual Play4Kay game. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET.