BRONX, N.Y. – Senior guard Lakiah Hyson scored a career-high 21 points, including a pair of free throws to make it a two-possession game with 21.8 seconds left, as UNC Greensboro rallied past Fordham on Saturday, 69-63, to snap a six-game losing streak.
With UNCG (2-6) nursing a two-point lead, Hyson stepped to the line and sank both attempts on a two-shot foul to make it 67-63 and eclipse her previous career best of 20 points, set last season. After a defensive stop on the other end, redshirt freshman Amy Clapper was fouled on the rebound. She hit both of her attempts with 1.3 seconds left for the final margin.
Monique Floyd and Amanda Leigh finished with 10 points each for the Spartans, while Fordham (6-4) was led by Randall Hurst's 18 points. Tiffany Stokes (13), Becky Peters (12) and Katie Vican (11) also finished in double figures for the Rams.
The Spartans trailed 50-42 with just over 11 minutes left in the game, but used an aggressive full-court press to rattle off a 15-4 run over the next five minutes to take the lead for the first time in the second half. Hyson had back-to-back buckets off Fordham turnovers to put UNCG back in front, and Agne Girstautaite capped the run with a layup, again off a Fordham turnover.
A Vican 3-pointer tied things up at 57, but Hyson answered with a 3 of her own to put the Spartans back on top for good, 60-57 with 3:27 remaining.
UNCG would stretch its lead to as many as six in the final minutes. Kendra Smith hit the front end of a one-and-one with just under three minutes to go, and 5-foot, 4-inch freshman Dayshaun Richbow snuck into the lane for the offensive rebound when Smith missed the second, getting a layup to fall to push the score to 63-57.
A Vican layup and a pair of free throws from Kristina Bell got the Rams back within a possession at 63-61, but Richbow answered with another layup to make it a four-point game with just over a minute left.
Fordham was forced to foul to stop the clock, and UNCG made the strategy work by twice missing the front end of one-and-one opportunities.
Hyson fouled Peters off her own miss with 22.3 seconds left, sending Peters to the line for a one-and-one. The sophomore made both shots, but Hyson sealed the game at the other end.
The first half was a back-and-forth affair featuring eight lead changes and seven ties. Neither team led by more than five at any point in the opening stanza, but Peters' jumper from the free throw line as time expired gave the Rams a 32-30 lead going into the break.
The first half also saw UNCG get into early foul trouble in the post, with Clapper picking up a pair of fouls just over two minutes into the game. Girstautaite came on in relief and picked up three fouls of her own in the next four minutes, while a third post player, Dee Corbett, picked up three in eight minutes after coming in for Girstautaite.
UNCG shot 54.2 percent (13-for-24) from the floor in the second half, and 46.2 percent (24-for-52) for the game.
Hyson finished 7-for-11 from the field, including a perfect 3-for-3 from 3-point range.
The Spartans' bench provided a big boost, outscoring Fordham's 20-2. Richbow and Girstautaite netted six points each for UNCG off the bench.
"We closed the game well," UNCG coach Lynne Agee said. "We got the lead late and held on and made some defensive stops. We played well down the stretch and hit our free throws and closed out like we needed to. Hyson stepped up big for us today, and we got clutch baskets from Dayshaun late."
Stokes had a game-high nine rebounds to lead the Rams, while Smith and Leigh had six each for the Spartans.
UNCG returns home to host North Carolina Central on Wednesday. Opening tip is set for 7 p.m. at Fleming Gym.
UNC GREENSBORO 69, FORDHAM 63
UNC GREENSBORO (2-6)
Lakiah Hyson 7-11 4-6 21; Monique Floyd 4-8 2-3 10; Amanda Leigh 3-9 2-2 10; Dayshaun Richbow 3-5 0-0 6; Agne Girstautaite 3-3 0-0 6; Amy Clapper 0-2 5-6 5; Sarah Folwell 1-4 0-0 3; Dee Corbett 1-2 1-2 3; Kendra Smith 1-6 1-2 3;Sidnei Harmon 1-1 0-0 2; TaShama Banner 0-0 0-0 0; Jazz Weaver 0-0 0-0 0; Brey Dorsett 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 24-52 15-21 69.
Randall Hurst 7-17 4-7 18; Tiffany Stokes 5-9 3-7 13; Becky Peters 3-7 4-4 12; Katie Vican 4-11 2-2 11; Kristina Bell 2-7 2-2 7; Kyara Weekes 1-6 0-0 2; Caitlin Shadbolt 0-0 0-0 0; Ranait Griff 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 22-57 15-22 63.
UNC Greensboro 30 39 69
Fordham 32 31 63
3-point goals--UNC Greensboro 6-18 (Lakiah Hyson 3-3; Amanda Leigh 2-8; Sarah Folwell 1-3; Amy Clapper 0-1; Kendra Smith 0-2; Brey Dorsett 0-1), Fordham 4-11 (Becky Peters 2-5; Kristina Bell 1-1; Katie Vican 1-3; Kyara Weekes 0-2). Fouled out--UNC Greensboro-Agne Girstautaite, Fordham-Kristina Bell. Rebounds--UNC Greensboro 37 (Amanda Leigh 6; Kendra Smith 6), Fordham 35 (Tiffany Stokes 9). Assists--UNC Greensboro 15 (Lakiah Hyson 4), Fordham 15 (Kristina Bell 7). Total fouls--UNC Greensboro 20, Fordham 19. Technical fouls--UNC Greensboro-None, Fordham-None. A-252
- UNCG -