The Covenant women's basketball team battled to climb back into the game in the second half, but could not overcome No. 3 West seed Maryville in a 73-56 loss in the first round of the USA South Tournament on Wednesday night.
Covenant ends the season with a 10-16 record. Maryville moves on to the quarterfinal round of the tournament and will face No. 2 East seed N.C. Wesleyan on Saturday at 3 p.m.
Ruthie Moore had 21 points, 18 of which came in the second half, while Hannah Monday tallied a third straight double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds in the loss.
Margo Koby wrapped up her basketball career with six points and eight rebounds. Koby and Monday had two blocks each, while Koby added three assists.
Down 30-16 at the half, Covenant had its most efficient quarter in the third to stay in the contest. The Scots hit 57 percent from the field in the period, including four 3-pointers, and Moore had 10 points to help keep Covenant within range. Covenant hit 3-pointers on three straight possessions from Michaela Price, Cosette Kirsch, and Moore.
Despite the hot shooting, Covenant entered the fourth quarter still down by 14 (53-39).
With five minutes remaining in the fourth, Covenant trimmed the deficit to 10 after a Moore jumper and 3-pointer on consecutive possessions to make it 63-53. Maryville (19-7) finished the game on a 10-3 run to secure the win.
Covenant finished the night shooting 34.5 percent (20-of-58) from the floor with nine 3-pointers. Kirsch dished out a game-high five assists as the Scots totaled 10 on the night.
Four players scored in double figures for Maryville led by 18 points apiece from Kelley Wandell and Klaire Varney. Courtney Carruthers had 15 points and Abbi Joseph had 10 points off the bench. The host Scots connected on 49.1 percent (26-of-53) for the game and made 19-of-26 at the free throw line.
Covenant was making its fourth straight appearance in the USA South Tournament.