Sunday, November 24, 2013
- by B.B. Branton
In a both ends of the court effort turned victory, the Chattanooga Lady Mocs defeated visiting Auburn, 80-52, Sunday afternoon at McKenzie Arena in a women’s college basketball game and put a smile on UTC coach Jim Foster’s face.
Pure and simple it was vintage UTC women's basketball. A well-oiled machine hitting on all cylinders.
“We did a good job of taking care of the ball and our effort was good,” said a pleased Foster whose team is 4-1 and now takes to the road for eight games in 23 days, not returning home until Jan.4.
On an afternoon with temperature's outside in the 30s and the Lady Mocs ironically seeking their 30th straight home win over two plus seasons, the triumphant Blue and Gold used a balanced attack to defeat the Southeastern Conference Tigers foe for the third time in 13 meetings and the first time since 2005.
Eleven Mocs had their name in the scoring column, led by Meghan Downes with a game and season-high 17, followed by Alex Black and Ashlen Dewart, both with 13. Taylor Hall had another balanced game with eight rebounds and points, seven assists and five steals.
Leading by 11 at intermission having shot 46.4% from the field and a perfect 7-7 from the line, UTC (4-1) used a 15-5 run in the first five minutes of the second half to go up by 21 at 50-29 and never looked back.
But it only got better as the Blue and Gold pushed that lead to a game-high 29 points two minutes later at 58-29, as Black buried her third and final 3-pointer of the afternoon on an assist from Faith Dupree.
The Mocs seemingly could do little wrong whether it was smooth as glass, basket-producing give-and-go's with seniors Dewart and Hall to long range assisted 3s from Black (3-3) and Downes (2-7).
UTC had the advantage in assists (18-11), steals (11-4) and turnovers (Auburn led 22-7).
"Everything was clicking today,” said Downes who has 58 career 3s.
“Meghan (3-3 from 3-point land) stepped up huge,” stated Dewart.
Auburn (3-2) was led by Tra’Cee Tanner with 14 points and eight rebounds and Kiani Parker with 10 points.
Quick Mocs Start: UTC opened with a 14-0 run at 15:35 with Downes leading the way with eight points. Auburn went on a 7-0 run of its own to trail 14-7 at 13:25 on a 3-pointer from Brandy Montgomery.
The Tigers pulled within three at 23-20 on a Montgomery free throw, but the Mocs re-grouped for a 10-0 of its own, led by Ka'Vonne Towns with 4 points, for a 33-20 advantage.
Second Half: The Mocs opened the second 20 minutes strong as they did in the opening half with a 10-3 run to lead by 18 at 45-27 at 16:06. Less than four minutes later the lead was 29 (58-29, 12:38).
Tribute to Taylor Hall - Fast Company: "I have been doing this (coaching) for 36 years, and something I haven’t coached is a great passing front-court player.
If you look at great basketball teams in history, the (Boston) Celtics’ Larry Bird was a great half-court passer ... Dave DeBusschere and Bill Bradley (New York Knicks) were greats passers as forwards.
Really significant basketball teams have had that dimension and that’s what Taylor Hall is. She is really a power forward who had seven assists and zero turnovers. If you look at her assists-turnover ratio at her position, it is kind of amazing.
Philly Cheesesteaks and More Smiles: While the team's effort put a smile on the face of coach Foster, being able to find a genuine Philly Cheese Steak in the greater Chattanooga area would be smile No.2.
A Philadelphia native and Chattanooga area resident said Sunday afternoon one difficulty is finding the right type of bread and not cutting the meat too thick.
Home Win Streak- 30 in a row ...nation's second longest current home streak in D-I women's basketball.
Frosh Five: Coach Foster had the future on the court at one time as Five Freshmen - Jasmine Joiner, Whitney Hartlage, Moses Johnson, Chelsey Shumpert and Aryanna Gilbert - played the final minute together ... Gilbert had 2 points and Johnson buried a 3.
CHATTANOOGA 80, AUBURN 52 Nov. 24, 2013 - McKenzie Arena
Tanner, Tra'Cee 5-6 4-5 14; Parker, Kiani 4-6 2-2 10; Montgomery, Brandy 3-6
1-3 8; Tanner, Tyrese 4-11 0-0 8; Frerking, Katie 1-3 4-6 7; Dieng, Khady
1-3 0-0 3; Davis, Peyton 1-3 0-0 2; Capers, Cabriana 0-2 0-0 0; Brimfield,
Melinda 0-1 0-2 0; Starr, Allina 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 19-43 11-18 52.
DOWNES, Meghan 6-14 3-3 17; DEWART, Ashlen 5-8 2-2 13; BLACK, Alex 5-6 0-0
13; TOWNS, Ka'Vonne 2-4 5-5 9; HALL, Taylor 4-10 0-0 8; DUPREE, Faith 3-5
0-2 6; JACKSON, Tatianna 1-4 2-2 4; JOHNSON, Moses 1-1 0-0 3; PAYNE, Alicia
1-2 1-3 3; GILBERT, Aryanna 1-1 0-0 2; HARTLAGE, Whitney 0-2 2-2 2;
SHUMPERT, Chelsey 0-0 0-0 0; JOYNER, Jasmine 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 29-57 15-19
Auburn........................ 24 28 - 52
Chattanooga................... 35 45 - 80
3-point goals--Auburn 3-8 (Frerking, Katie 1-2; Dieng, Khady 1-2;
Montgomery, Brandy 1-2; Starr, Allina 0-1; Tanner, Tyrese 0-1), Chattanooga
7-16 (BLACK, Alex 3-3; DOWNES, Meghan 2-7; DEWART, Ashlen 1-1; JOHNSON,
Moses 1-1; JACKSON, Tatianna 0-1; HARTLAGE, Whitney 0-2; HALL, Taylor 0-1).
Fouled out--Auburn-Tanner, Tyrese, Chattanooga-None. Rebounds--Auburn 34
(Tanner, Tra'Cee 8), Chattanooga 24 (HALL, Taylor 8). Assists--Auburn 11
(Starr, Allina 5), Chattanooga 18 (HALL, Taylor 7). Total fouls--Auburn 21,
Chattanooga 17. Technical fouls--Auburn-None, Chattanooga-None. A-2069
Next Games: Nov. 29 vs. Minnesota at he Univ. of Hawaii Tournament ... Mocs also play Hawaii (Nov.30) and Colorado State (Dec 1)
contact B.B. Branton at William.firstname.lastname@example.org
Tatianna Jackson launches a three-point shot.
- Photo2 by Tim Evearitt