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Jacksonville State (2-8)
12/14/2013 | Jacksonville, Ala.-Pete Mathews Coliseum | Attendance: 372
Saturday, December 14, 2013
JACKSONVILLE, Ala. - In dominating fashion, the Lipscomb women’s basketball team looked sharp from the start en route to an 86-76 win over Jacksonville State Tuesday night at Pete Mathews Coliseum.
“It was a good win and the way we look at it, we are 1-0,” Lipscomb head coach Greg Brown said. “This is our new team that we are taking forward. With the addition of Danay (Fothergill) and Chandler (Cooper), this was the first time we have had this group together.”
With the win, Lipscomb (2-5) has won consecutive road games for the first time in Brown’s tenure.
The two teams traded buckets to begin the game before Jacksonville State went on a 7-1 run to take the lead at 9-4 just three minutes into the game. It did not take long for the Lady Bisons to start connecting by hitting seven of the next 10 shots to go on a 14-2 run and take the lead for good at 18-11.
Western Kentucky transfer Danay Fothergill, playing in her first game of the season, provided a spark for Lipscomb in the first half. She drained a 3-point basket on her first shot in Purple and Gold and finished the game with 19 points, four assists, three rebounds and two steals in 33 minutes of play.
“Danay was nervous and excited all at the same time tonight,” Brown said. “I thought she played very poised. She is so strong and athletic that she can help us in a lot of different ways.”
Lipscomb pressured the Gamecocks from the tip and forced 18 turnovers, a season high for the Bisons.
Behind 54-percent shooting, the Purple and Gold scored the most first half points of the season to lead 44-41 at the intermission.
“No doubt, it was our most complete game of season,” Brown said. “And the good news is that we certainly haven’t peaked. These last two weeks off were good for us. I thought our defensive energy and communication was very good tonight.”
Cooper was perfect in the second half and hit all five of her shots, including four from 3-point land. She finished the game with a career-high 27 points on 9-of-12 shooting and 7-of-9 on three’s. Her .750 shooting percentage was the highest single-game percentage in school history with at least eight made shots.
“Cooper’s teammates did a good job of finding her off the penetration tonight,” Brown said. “Most of her shots were good rhythm three’s and she can knock them down when stepping into the shot.”
With Lipscomb leading 64-50, Jacksonville State (2-8) began to chip away at its deficit. The three headed monster of Destany McLin, Miranda Cantrell and Candace Morton scored the next 15 points for the Gamecocks and bring them to within four.
Cooper then answered with back-to-back three’s to push Lipscomb’s lead back to 10. The Lady Bisons hot shooting was too much for the Gamecocks to overcome and Lipscomb left Jacksonville with an 86-76 win. It was the highest point total of the season for the Lady Bisons.
Coming into Saturday night’s game as the fourth best rebounder in the nation, sophomore Ashley Southern continued her double-double streak with 14 points and 13 boards. She now has double-doubles in three consecutive games to give her six for the season.
“I think the key tonight was that we were taking good shots,” Brown said. “They were inside-out three’s and we shot those at a very high percentage. We have good shooters and we recruit them to be good shooters, so we knew this could happen.”
For the night, Lipscomb hit 28-of-55 shots from the field and a season high 51-percent shooting. Brown’s squad knocked down 13 from beyond the arc, the fourth most in school history.
McLin led the Gamecocks with 21 points on 8-of-13 shooting. Morton finished with 19 points and seven rebounds. Cantrell finished with a double-double at 12 points and 11 rebounds.
The Lady Bisons have a quick turnaround with a trip to Athens, Ga. to take on the No. 16 Georgia Bulldogs at 6 p.m. Tuesday night.
“We have had tough matchups before so it won’t be anything new for us,” Brown said. “You just go in there and play as hard as you can possibly play. When you play good teams like that you have to knock down shots to give yourself a chance to win. We have two days of work and two days of film to get ready. It will be exciting for our team.”