GREENSBORO, N.C. – UNC Greensboro put four players in double digits with Amanda Leigh, Kendra Smith and Agne Girstautaite all notching career highs in points as the Spartans won their season-opener on Saturday, 85-68 over Morgan State.
Leigh matched her career high with 18 points, Smith added 14 and Girstautaite matched her career best with 12 points as the Spartans (1-0) got a balanced effort in winning their season-opener for the 10th time in the last 12 seasons. Monique Floyd added 15 points, a team-high seven rebounds and a career-high eight assists for UNCG, which just missed putting all five starters in double figures. Lakiah Hyson finished with nine points. Sophomore Sarah Folwell also had a career-high eight points and matched her career best with five rebounds.
Morgan State's Corin Adams, the MEAC's Preseason Player of the Year, scored a game-high 31 points, matching the Fleming Gym scoring record set on Jan. 19, 1990, by Lincoln Memorial's Debbie Hoskins. Georgien Williams had a game-high eight rebounds for the Lady Bears (0-1).
UNCG held just a six-point halftime lead but opened the second half on a 7-0 run to stretch its advantage to 13 points, its largest of the game at that point. The Lady Bears refused to go down quietly, however, putting together an 8-1 run to cut it back to six at 53-47 with 12:58 to play.
One possession later, Floyd converted a three-point play that seemed to re-awaken UNCG's offense. Floyd's layup and free throw ignited a 12-4 run, which Smith punctuated with a jumper off a Floyd assist to make it 65-51 with 8:49 to play.
UNCG would stretch its lead to as many as 22 at 85-63 with just under a minute to play before Adams hit a pair of free throws and Phylicia Jones nailed a 3-pointer for the final margin.
Adams nearly single-handedly kept the Lady Bears in the game in the first half, as she had 18 of Morgan State's 33 points in the opening frame.
After a Mahala Thomas jumper pulled Morgan State to within one point at 18-17 with 10:07 left before intermission, Adams streaked in for a fast-break layup to give the Lady Bears their first lead since holding a 7-6 advantage.
Smith hit one of her two 3-pointers to put the Spartans back on top, but Adams answered with a 3 of her own – one of her four on the afternoon – to give MSU its final lead of the day.
Hyson quickly answered with a 3 on the other end to put UNCG up 24-22 with 8:44 to play, and freshmen Amy Clapper and Dayshaun Richbow added a layup and a pair of free throws, respectively, to make it 28-22 just over seven minutes left in the opening frame.
MSU never got closer than five points the rest of the way.
Leigh hit four 3-pointers on the day, with her first giving the Spartans their first lead of the day at 6-5. After a pair of Adams free throws and back-to-back buckets from Smith, Leigh hit another 3 to push UNCG's lead to six.
UNCG dished off 23 assists Saturday, its most since having 24 against Elon on Jan. 27, 2007.
The Spartans have little time to savor the win, as they return to action Tuesday at Liberty. Opening tip is set for 7 p.m. in Lynchburg, Va.
NOTES: UNCG's 85 points were its most in a season-opener since an 89-86 loss at Virginia Tech on Nov. 21, 1996. … The Spartans did not block a shot in the game, snapping a streak of 79 straight games with at least one block. Prior to Saturday, the last time UNCG did not block a shot was Jan. 2, 2007, in a 71-68 win over Chattanooga. … UNCG improved to 2-0 against Morgan State and 19-8 against MEAC teams all-time.
Morgan State vs UNC Greensboro
11/14/09 3:00 at Greensboro, N.C.
UNC GREENSBORO 85, MORGAN STATE 68
MORGAN STATE (0-1)
Corin Adams 8-17 11-15 31; Erin Hawkins 2-8 4-5 9; Tireion Turner 3-9 1-2 7; Mahala Thomas 3-6 0-0 6; Georgien Williams 2-3 2-3 6; Theresa Davis 1-5 2-2 4; Phylicis Jones 1-2 0-0 3; Kristina Rosario 0-2 2-5 2; DeKeisha Mathis 0-0 0-0 0; Briana Coardes 0-0 0-0 0; Abby Diagne 0-1 0-0 0; Brittany Noel 0-5 0-0 0; Danielle Pettis 0-0 0-0 0; Tevonia Williams 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 20-59 22-32 68.
UNC GREENSBORO (1-0)
Amanda Leigh 7-19 0-0 18; Monique Floyd 6-10 3-6 15; Kendra Smith 5-9 2-2 14; Agne Girstautaite 5-8 2-5 12; Lakiah Hyson 3-7 2-3 9; Sarah Folwell 3-4 1-2 8; Dayshaun Richbow 1-1 2-2 4; Amy Clapper 1-4 0-0 2; Brey Dorsett 1-1 0-0 2; TaShama Banner 0-1 1-3 1; Sidnei Harmon 0-1 0-0 0; Agneta Morkunaite 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 32-65 13-23 85.
Morgan State 33 35 68
UNC Greensboro 39 46 85
3-point goals--Morgan State 6-23 (Corin Adams 4-8; Phylicis Jones 1-1; Erin Hawkins 1-4; Georgien Williams 0-1; Theresa Davis 0-2; Brittany Noel 0-2; Mahala Thomas 0-1; Tireion Turner 0-4), UNC Greensboro 8-22 (Amanda Leigh 4-14; Kendra Smith 2-4; Sarah Folwell 1-1; Lakiah Hyson 1-2; TaShama Banner 0-1). Fouled out--Morgan State-None, UNC Greensboro-None. Rebounds—Morgan State 37 (Georgien Williams 8), UNC Greensboro 49 (Monique Floyd 7). Assists--Morgan State 6 (Erin Hawkins 3), UNC Greensboro 23 (Monique Floyd 8). Total fouls--Morgan State 22, UNC Greensboro 25. Technical fouls—Morgan State-None, UNC Greensboro-None. A-234
- UNCG -