DAVIDSON, N.C. --- Four University of Tennessee at Chattanooga players combined for 46 points to lead the Lady Mocs to a 60-56 win over Davidson. Chattanooga improves to 13-3 overall and 6-1 in Southern Conference women’s basketball action while the Wildcats’ even out its record at 8-8 and suffer their first league loss to move to 5-1.
Junior Faith Dupree (Knoxville, Tn.) made her return to the lineup and scored 11 points in 14 minutes making 3-of-10 from the field and 5-of-6 from the free throw line. She started the game with eight of Chattanooga’s first 10 points going 2-of-2 from the field and 4-for-4 from the charity stripe.
Seniors Kayla Christopher (Oliver Springs, Tn.) and Kylie Lambert (Etowah, Tn.) led Chattanooga with 12 points each. Lambert had five rebounds, two assists and two steals and Christopher was 2-of-4 from the 3-point line. Junior Alex Black (Memphis, Tenn.) chipped in 11 points and grabbed six rebounds and classmate Ashlen Dewart went 4-of-9 from the floor with nine points.
After getting down 8-2 at the 17:20 mark of the first half, Dupree entered the game and hit both of her shots to make it a 10-6 with 16:18 to play in the opening half. Over the next 1:18, Dupree was fouled twice in the act of shooting and sank all four free throws to tie it up 10-10 at the 15:00 mark.
Davidson got back out to a 15-10 lead a short time later, but Chattanooga mounted a comeback to tie it up 15-15 on a 3-pointer from Lambert with 11:59 left in the half. The two teams battled back and forth, tying it up four more times over the half. The Lady Mocs went 6-for-6 over the final six minutes of the half and outscored 11-0 over the final 2:09 to lead 35-27 at the break.
The Lady Mocs pushed its lead up to 43-31 on a jumper from junior Meghan Downes (Newnan, Ga.) at the 16:14 mark, their largest of the game. However, the Wildcats gained the momentum, scoring 11 straight points over a 3:21 period to cut the lead to 43-42 with 8:47 to play.
After a scoring drought of 6:47 and a near loss of the lead, Christopher scored eight straight points, including both of her 3-pointers to shift the wave back to Chattanooga pushing the lead to 51-45 with 6:16 to play.
The Lady Mocs never lost the lead and went out front by eight, 55-47 with 3:10 to play, but the Wildcats managed to get back to within one with just 1:38 to play. Katrin Cheimeka nailed a 3-pointer then followed that with fastbreak layup after a turnover by UTC to make it 55-52. Barbara Sitton then hit a jumper to make it 55-54.
Davidson’s Cheimeka missed a pair of free throws that would have given the Wildcats’ the lead. Christopher grabbed the rebound and was fouled by Cheimeka.
After making 6-of-8 free throws over the majority of the game, the Lady Mocs shooting woes at the charity stripe returned making just 3-of-6. Christopher hit the first of her two to give UTC a slim 56-54 lead with 48 seconds to play.
Davidson grabbed the rebound, but Cheimeka missed her 3-point attempt and fouled Black on the rebound. Black made the first of her two free throws to make it a 57-54 game with 24.5 seconds to play. After missing the second free throw, the ball was knocked out of bounds by Davidson and Chattanooga had the ball underneath.
A quick inbounds play from Black to Lambert made it 59-54 with seven seconds on the clock. Davidson missed a jumper on the other end by Laura Murray and she fouled Christopher on the rebound. Christopher made the first of her two free throws for the final score, 60-54.
Davidson’s Sophia Aleksandravicius had a game-high 16 points and just missed a double-double with nine rebounds. She had two assists, four steals and two blocked shots. Murray scored nine points and had five rebounds along with three assists and three steals. Hannah Early chipped in nine points for the Wildcats and Sitton had eight points, four rebounds, three assists and two steals.
Chattanooga outrebounded Davidson 35-31 led by Hall’s team-best seven. UTC was 22-52 (42.3%) from the field and 7-of-13 (53.8%) from the 3-point line. Davidson outscored Chattanooga 28-22 in the paint and 16-13 off the bench. However, Chattanooga held an 11-4 advantage on second chance points getting 10 offensive rebounds to the Wildcats’ eight. UTC scored 17 points off 15 Davidson turnovers and the Wildcats had 16 off 16 Chattanooga miscues.
The Lady Mocs return to action Sunday at 2 p.m. at Western Carolina. The game will be carried live on ESPN 105.1 FM. Live stats and streaming video will be available at the women’s basketball schedule page or at Gameday Central at GoMocs.com.
- Photo2 by Tim Evearitt