ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Junior Gracie Brunel scored a game-high 19 points and freshman Britney Chavez tallied a personal-best 14 points and shot 4 of 4 from the 3-point line for the LaGrange College women's basketball team during a 77-73 win over Bridgewater State Sunday in McArthur Center at Eckerd College.
Junior Breonna Glover finished with her third collegiate double-double with 11 points and a game-leading 11 rebounds for the Panthers (7-4, 2-1 USA South). She shot 5 of 7 from the field and corralled five offensive rebounds, as the Panthers won their fourth consecutive regular season game, dating back to Dec. 1.
Freshman Ema Turner tied a career-high 10 points and shot 2 of 5 on 3-pointers, while Brunel registered a game and career-high six steals. Senior Jalaya Lewis finished with 10 points and six boards, as LC shot 9 of 20 on 3-point shots.
"I am proud of the team for the performance today," said LaGrange College Women's Basketball Head Coach Jasen Jonus. "We shot 45.0% on 3-pointers and played as a cohesive unit. Glover and senior Jada Brown were huge off the bench and our starters set the tone. We are starting to find our rhythm. We need to keep improving one day at a time."
Destiny Fitzgerald posted a team-high 16 points on 8-of-11 shooting from the field for the Bears (8-4). Sydney Bradbury finished with a double-double with 11 points and a team-best 10 boards. Sunday marked the first-ever meeting between the Panthers and Bears.
The Panthers raced out to an 8-3 advantage 1:55 into the first quarter on a three-ball by Turner. LaGrange embarked on a 15-2 run, taking a 23-7 lead on another 3-pointer by Turner off a feed by Chavez with 4:10 left in the first. LC received a combined 18 points in the opening 10 minutes from Chavez, Turner and Brunel, as they shot 6 of 8 on treys.
LC ended the second quarter on a 5-0 surge, as an old-fashioned 3-point play by Turner and a jumper by Brown sent the unit into halftime with a 48-33 cushion. Chavez and Turner combined for 20 first-half points.
Back-to-back made field goals by Brunel gave LC a 54-39 lead with 6:34 remaining in the third quarter. Brunel set junior Jada Strickland up for a layup with 20 seconds on the clock, sending the Panthers into the fourth with a 64-51 cushion. Brunel scored 10 points on 5-for-7 shooting from the field in the third.
A trey by Chavez extended LC's advantage to 69-55 with 7:44 left in regulation. The Bears cut the Panthers' lead down to four three times in the final five minutes, but LaGrange did not allow Bridgewater State to get any closer.
LaGrange led the steals' category, 11-7, and held a 21-13 lead in points off turnovers. The Panthers shot 44.9% from the field (31 for 69) and limited the Bears to 21.1% shooting from beyond the arc (4 of 19).
The Panthers compete against DePauw at 11 a.m. Monday in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Assistant Sports Informtion Director Trevor Wenners can be reached at email@example.com.