Photo courtesy of Matt Jones
BANNER ELK, N.C. - The Lees-McRae College women's basketball team dropped a tight Conference Carolinas contest to visiting Emmanuel (Ga.) on Saturday (Jan. 12) by a score of 65-62.
Game Summary - Lees-McRae led after a low-scoring 10 minutes by a score of 13-11. Emmanuel (Ga.) would jump out to a 7-2 lead four minutes in, before a jumper from Meg Crawford and a three-pointer by Destiny Johnson tied the game at seven at the four-minute mark. The Bobcats would take an 11-7 lead after when Crawford made two free throws that Johnson followed up with a jumper on the next possession, before the Lions would score the next four points to knot the game at 11 in the final minute. A Crawford layup with 37 seconds left in the period served as the final bucket of the frame.
Emmanuel (Ga.) would win the second quarter 16-13 to take a one-point lead to the locker room. The two teams would trade scores over the first 1:50 only to be deadlocked at 17, before Emmanuel (Ga.) would cling to a 20-17 lead for the next minute and change. After another sequence left the teams tied at 20, Emmanuel (Ga.) would go on a 7-2 run over two minutes and change to go ahead 27-22 in the final minute. The Bobcats would score the only points inside the final minute, with two free throws from Brea Forbes and also a mid-range jumper from Johnson at the buzzer to send the teams to the locker room with the Lions ahead 27-26.
The Lions would seemingly take control in the third quarter, out-scoring Lees-McRae 28-19 in the frame. An early sequence left the game tied at 31, before Emmanuel (Ga.) would score the next five points to go up 36-31 three minutes into the period. The Bobcats got back to within two as the halfway point of the period passed, before Emmanuel (Ga.) would core again to get back up by five. After Lees-McRae got within just three again around the halfway point, Emmanuel (Ga.) went on a run over a minute and change that left them up by eight. The Lions would increase their lead to 10 approaching the final two minutes of the quarter, before a triple from Breanna Hardnett and a layup from Alexis Ammons cut the deficit to just five. The Lions would cushion their lead back up to 10 points, and take a 55-45 lead to the fourth.
Lees-McRae would win the fourth quarter 17-10, but come up just short in their comeback effort. A Markia Stacey layup and a three-pointer from Forbes were the first two buckets of the fourth that cut the deficit back to just five, forcing a Lions timeout four minutes in. Coming out of the stoppage, the Bobcats were able to get back within one possession thanks to an old-fashioned three-point play from Forbes. Emmanuel (Ga.) would take a five-point lead into the final four minutes, before Johnson would knock down another three-pointer to get Lees-McRae back within two. With 2:41 to play, Forbes sunk two free throws to tie the game at 58. The Lions would re-gain their five-point lead in a matter of 45 seconds, before back-to-back Forbes jumpers would get the Bobcats back within one possession in the final minute. A layup by Lochlain Corliss with 10 seconds left would serve as the final bucket in the game, as a last attempt at a shot for the Bobcats was contested.
Stats Rundown - Lees-McRae shot 33.3 percent (22-66) from the floor, 22.7 percent (5-22) from long range and 72.2 percent (13-18) from the foul line. Forbes scored in double figures for the fifth straight outing, leading the team with 20 points. Johnson also added 18, while Crawford contributed 10 points on the afternoon. Lees-McRae pulled down 34 total rebounds in the contest, including 10 on the offensive end and 24 on the defensive end. Crawford's team-high 10 boards helped her complete her fourth double-double of the season. Her three blocks were also a team-high, while Stacey dished out five assists on the afternoon.
Up Next - The Bobcats (7-9, 4-5 Conference Carolinas) look to end the skid at home on Wednesday (Jan. 16) when they host King (Tenn.) for a 5:30 p.m. tip-off.