ORANGEBURG, S.C. – The Presbyterian College women’s basketball team nearly pulled out a win on Thursday night in its road non-conference game, but the South Carolina State Bulldogs held on for a 43-41 decision in Orangeburg, S.C.

PC falls to 1-4 on the season and will take a break for the Thanksgiving holiday before returning to action on Saturday, November 30 at Virginia Tech. Tip-off is slated for 2 p.m. South Carolina State improves to 1-2.

The Blue Hose chased down a narrow SC State lead throughout the second half, eventually pulling even at 40-40 with 5:20 left in the game on a Sherece Smith (Clemson, S.C.) layup. The Bulldogs answered with a three-pointer shortly after and clung to their advantage down the stretch. With 1:28 left, a SC State foul sent Keyonna Allen (Forest Park, Ga.) to the line. The redshirt sophomore made the second to pull PC within two.

The visitors forced a turnover with 13 seconds left and called a timeout. The Blue Hose looked for a game-tying shot, but the Bulldogs’ Cabriel Duren stole the ball with two seconds left to seal the win. PC limited SC State to seven points in the game’s final 9:48 and held the home side scoreless for the final 4:49.

The two sides played an extremely evenly matched game. PC shot 34.9 percent (15-for-43) while SC State shot 34.8 percent (16-for-46) and each team grabbed 31 rebounds—nine offensive, 22 defensive.

Karlee Taylor (Asheville, N.C.) led PC in scoring with nine points, all from long distance. Allen added seven points, six rebounds and two blocks while Noelle Carter (Neptune, N.J.) chipped in six points and six rebounds.

South Carolina State raced out to 14-4 lead early before a Rebecca Walker (Snellville, Ga.) three-pointer made it 14-7. The shot came from an Aianna Kelly (Newport News, Va.) assist, one of her team-leading four on the night.

The Bulldogs answered with another three and eventually took a 12-point lead before the Blue Hose began to claw back. PC broke off a 7-0 round on points from Carter, Kelly and Kasey Hobbie (Spring Lake, N.J.). Hobbie knocked down a three-pointer to cap the run and PC went 7-for-21 from three-point range on the night.

A Walker free-throw cut South Carolina State’s lead to four and Taylor drained two straight treys to give PC a two-point lead with 3:28 left in the half. South Carolina State then responded with four straight points to take a 25-23 advantage into halftime.

The Bulldogs’ lead never grew above five in the second half as the sides swapped baskets for most of the period. Smith led PC with four points in the half but the Blue Hose had trouble containing Kourtney Williams, who scored 10 of her game-high 18 points in the final 20 minutes.