BANNER ELK, N.C. --- Freshman Alexis Ammons exploded for 18 points, but the Lees-McRae women's basketball team dropped a hard fought battle to Belmont Abbey, 82-61, in a Conference Carolinas tilt Wednesday evening at Williams Gymnasium in Banner Elk, N.C.
The Crusaders (3-3, 2-0 CC) used an impressive performance from Gabrielle Bethel (16 points, 15 rebounds) while Alex Busch led all scorers with 23 points. The Bobcats (0-6, 0-2) amassed 27 points off of turnovers.
Ammons (Asheville, N.C.) stuffed the stat book with a season- and career-high 18 points, seven rebounds, three blocks, an assist and steal.
LMC's Brea Forbes (Freeport, Bahamas) sparked an 8-2 run in the first 1:20 of action with a pair of assists and a deep three.
BAC responded with a 10-0 run, capped off by a three from Briana Grier.
Grier shot an impressive 7-of-8 from the field and amassed 17 points.
The Crusaders pushed the lead to eight, 19-11, after an Alexius Hampton triple.
Bobcat senior Tayler Collins (Fayetteville, N.C.) knocked down a pair of jumpers before LMC's offense fell mum for the final 3:05 of the first quarter.
Bethel and Grier took control in the second quarter while the visitors stretched its lead to 19, 37-18.
Both teams hit a trio of triples in the first half.
Forbes ignited a quick 7-0 run to open the third while the Bobcats shaved the deficit to 11, 47-36.
LMC kept the pressure up after a pair of Ammons layups, 53-43.
The Crusaders' Busch and Hampton thwarted the rally by combining for nine points while pushing the lead back to 18, 66-47.
BAC held the Bobcats without a field goal for the first 3:14 of the fourth before a bucket from Ammons ended the drought.
Sophomore Mackenzie Blankenship (Elizabethton, Tenn.) led the squad with five assists while Ammons had a team-high seven rebounds.
The Bobcats trek to Pfeiffer Saturday, Dec. 5 at 5:30 p.m. for a conference battle in Misenheimer, N.C.
- LMC -