Photo Courtesy of Seth Lowther
WILSON, N.C. – The Barton College Bulldogs out-rebounded the Lees-McRae College women's basketball team 45-29 on its way to a 71-60 victory over the Bobcats Tuesday evening in Wilson, N.C. The loss moves LMC's record to 4-23 overall and 4-17 in conference action, while the Bulldogs improve to 17-10 overall and 14-7 in league play with the win.
LMC jumped out on the Bulldogs early as it got out to a 17-11 lead after just one quarter. Anna Hairgrove scored nine of her career-high 16 points in the opening frame to pace Lees-McRae's offense. The defense for LMC also played a big part in it getting an early lead as it held the Bulldogs to 29.4 percent shooting from the field and forced eight turnovers in the opening 10 minutes.
Barton pulled almost a complete 180 on the Bobcats when the two teams returned for the second. The Bulldogs kept LMC's offense in check as it scored just eight points in the frame. Barton also forced LMC into seven turnovers in the frame as well. Because of the sudden change in momentum, the Bulldogs were able to regain the lead with about three minutes to go in the half before taking 28-25 lead into the locker room for halftime.
After mixed results offensively for both teams in the first half, the Bobcats and Bulldogs came out rolling in the second half. Both teams shot over 60 percent from the field in the third. Brea Forbes scored eight of her 10 points in the game in the third to lead LMC. Despite the effort by Forbes and the rest of the Bobcats, Barton was able to grow its lead even further. After three quarters the score read, 55-45, Barton.
Lees-McRae made its best effort to close the deficit in the fourth, but due to sharp-shooting from the free throw line by Barton (6-for-7 in the quarter) LMC could not close the gap much as it ended up falling by the 71-60 final score.
Hairgrove and Breana Hardnett led LMC with 16 points each Tuesday. Hairgrove paced LMC with three steals as well and Hardnett recorded a team-high five assists. Martha Mastin was the Bobcats' top performer on the glass grabbing seven rebounds to go along with six points.
Lees-McRae will wrap up its 2016-17 season Friday when it travels to take on King (TN) University in Bristol, Tenn. The Tornado edged the Bobcats by two points (64-62) when the two teams matched up in Banner Elk last week. Tip-off is set for 5:30 p.m.