UNCG drops Holiday Classic opener to LaSalle, 63-47
ORLANDO, FL – The UNC Greensboro women’s basketball team dropped its opener in the Central Florida Holiday Classic, a 63-47 loss to LaSalle at UCF Arena on Wednesday night.
UNCG (1-9) had two players in double figures and was led by Kemena Brooks who had 13 points on 3-of-11 shooting from the floor. The Accokeek, MD native was also perfect from the free throw line going 4-for-4 from the charity stripe. Gini Grimsley was also in double-figures with the 11 points for the Spartans on 4-of-9 shooting from the field. Brooks and Grimsley both shot 50.0 percent from behind the arc. Ashley Mullins set a new career high with nine points on 3-of-7 shooting from the floor while Jasmine Dixon tied a career high with three steals.
“The game was won at the free throw line,” said head coach Lynne Agee. “We put them on the line 21 times and they were 18-of-21 and that was the game. We are a young team and are asking people to get used to new roles and with each game we are getting better. It’s a learning process and we do something better each time we step on the court and tonight was another step in our team’s development”
LaSalle (4-6) had three players in double figures and was led by Jamie Walsh who recorded a game-high 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting from the floor. Morgan Robertson tallied a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds while Margaret Elderton also added 10 points. Melanie Gibbons also had 10 rebounds in the win.
The Explorers opened the second half with a 10-6 run to take a 40-30 lead with only five minutes gone in the second stanza. LaSalle extended their lead to 45-32 behind the hot hand of Jamie Walsh who tallied eight points in the first nine minutes of the half after recording just five points in the first half.
UNCG got a spark off the bench from Sharniece Wadelington who recorded a key defensive stop and picked up a bucket midway through the half and allowed the Spartans to get back into the game with a 9-0 run to cut but the lead to 45-39 but the Explorers answered with free throws and a bucket from Elderton to keep the lead at eight points.
The teams traded buckets on the next several possessions and UNCG got the lead into single digits late in the game with a three-pointer from Brooks but several turnovers and missed shots down the stretch gave the Spartans their third consecutive loss.
In the first half UNCG connected on their first two three-pointers from Grimsley and Brooks and kept the LaSalle lead to 6-8 at the first media timeout. After the break, the Spartans got active on the defensive end and forced two crucial turnovers to take a 10-8 lead before buckets from Brittany Frazier and Grimsley gave UNCG a 15-10 lead.
With an 18-17 lead at the 7:28 mark, LaSalle used a 4-0 run to pull ahead 24-18 but two big three-pointers from Grimsley and Mullins got the Spartans right back in the game and cut the lead to 26-24 with just over three minutes remaining. The Spartans couldn’t find much offense late in the half and went into the break trailing 30-24.
UNCG shot 50.0 percent from behind the arc and won the battle of the boards by a 22-19 margin in the first stanza although the Explorers forced the Spartans into 12 first half turnovers.
The Spartans conclude action at the Central Florida Holiday Classic on Thursday when they face host, Central Florida. Tip off is set for 7:30 pm at UCF Arena.
LA SALLE 63, UNCG 47
LA SALLE (4-6, 0-0 A-10)
WALSH, Jamie 7-12 2-2 20; HIGHTOWER, Carlene 2-12 10-10 14; ROBERTSON,Morgan 5-12 0-0 10; ELDERTON, Margaret 2-9 5-7 10; MICKIEWICZ, Danielle 2-4 1-2 5; GIBBONS, Melanie 2-2 0-0 4; HOOVER, Alyse 0-2 0-0 0; AHL, Meghan 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 20-56 18-21 63.
UNCG (1-9, 0-1 SoCon)
BROOKS,Kemena 3-11 4-4 13; GRIMSLEY,Gini 4-9 0-1 11; MULLINS,Ashley 3-7 0-09; DIXON,Jasmine 3-9 0-1 6; CHAMBERLAIN,Meghan 1-2 0-0 2; WADELINGTON,S 1-3 0-0 2; FRAZIER,Brittany 1-4 0-0 2; GIRSTAUTAITE,Agne 1-1 0-0 2; SMITH,Kendra 0-1 0-0 0; LING,Ashley 0-3 0-0 0; FLOYD,Monique 0-3 0-0 0; HYSON,Lakiah 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 17-55 4-6 47.
Halftime: LaSalle 30, UNCG 24; 3-point goals--La Salle 5-16 (WALSH, Jamie 4-7; ELDERTON, Margaret 1-3;ROBERTSON, Morgan 0-2; HOOVER, Alyse 0-1; AHL, Meghan 0-1; HIGHTOWER, Carlene 0-2), UNCG 9-22 (GRIMSLEY,Gini 3-6; MULLINS,Ashley 3-7; BROOKS,Kemena 3-6; WADELINGTON,S 0-1; LING,Ashley 0-1; HYSON,Lakiah 0-1). Fouled out--La Salle-None, UNCG-None. Rebounds--La Salle 39 (ROBERTSON,Morgan 10; GIBBONS, Melanie 10), UNCG 38 (GRIMSLEY,Gini 6; DIXON,Jasmine 6; CHAMBERLAIN,Meghan 6). Assists--La Salle 13 (HIGHTOWER, Carlene 5), UNCG 9 (LING,Ashley 4). Total fouls--La Salle 12, UNCG 21. Technical fouls--LaSalle-None, UNCG-None. A-182
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