A late second half surge propelled the Lee women's basketball team to victory over Virginia-Wise Friday night in the opening game of the Jack Souther Classic at Walker Arena.
The Cavaliers looked to spoil the party for Lee pulling within two with 4:12 remaining in the second half.
The Lady Flames wouldn't be denied however, scoring timely buckets and making big stops down the stretch to secure a 59-48 victory.
The Lady Flames were led by junior guard Hollie German. German led all scorers with 22 points on 6-of-15 shooting from the field and was a perfect 7 for 7 from the free-throw line. The nativeof Benton, Tenn. also added five boards and five assists. Julia Zimmeran chipped in nine points and Brooke Hamby tossed in eight points to complete the victory for Lee.
Both teams struggled from the field in the first half. Lee shot just 29 pecent while Virginia-Wise shot 30 percent. Buckets were easier to come by in the second half, Lee finished 19-of 54 (35 percent) from the field. The Cavaliers were 18-of-49 from the field, good for 37 percent.
"Give Wise credit they are well coached and a really tough minded team. They played extremely hard and dictated tempo most of the game" explained Coach Marty Rowe.
The Cavaliers held a slight advantage in the rebounding category. Virginia-Wise pulled down 38 boards while the Lady Flames secured 34 .
Rowe added, "We have to do a better job of rebounding the basketball on both ends of the court. That's a toughness issue that we will address immediately."
Lee protected the basketball comitting just eight turnovers in the game. UVa.-Wise was guilty of 16 turnovers leading to 11 Lady Flame points. The Lady Flames made the most of 17 foul shots, cashing in on 14 of them. The Cavaliers struggled from the charity stripe converting just 11-of-21.
Virginia-Wise finished with two players in double figures. Christine Nyobe registered a double-double with 17 points and 13 rebounds. Makenzie Cluesman addded 14 points in the losing effort.
"Tomorrow's game against Evangel will be important to see how we respond to tonight's game." concluded Rowe.
In game two Auburn-Montgomery topped Evangel University, 52-47.
The Jack Souther Classic continues tomorrow at Walker Arena. Lee will matchup with Evangel University (Mo.) at 3 p.m. UVa.-Wise will take on Auburn-Montgomery in the opening game at 1 p.m.