Piedmont pulled away for a 69-52 win over LaGrange in a USA South game Wednesday night in Mariotti Gym. The loss dropped the Panthers to 13-9 overall and 8-5 in conference play.
The game was tied after three quarters, but Piedmont (20-3, 13-1 USA South) outscored the Panthers 23-6 in the final period. The Lady Lions moved into a tie for first in the West Division with Berea. The two teams play Saturday to determine the division's top seed for the upcoming USA South Tournament.
The Panthers are a half-game ahead of Brevard for third in the division. LC closes out its conference regular season at Covenant on Saturday and home Sunday against Huntingdon.
Coach Jasen Jonus
"It was a combination of their depth and our lack of execution of our half-court game. It is tough to win any game with 25 turnovers, we were coming off two games where we had less than 15 in each game. We did a real good job in the defensive end in the first half and through the third period when we tied the game. We have two more games and hope to finish strong heading into the conference tournament."
The two teams battled on even terms through three quarters. The Panthers opened the game with three quick layups for a 6-0 lead. Piedmont came back to lead 18-14 by the end of the first period. The Lady Lions stretched their lead to nine, 32-23, with 2:34 left in the half. Lewis got the Panthers within four at the break with a steal and a layup followed by a 3-pointer to make it 32-28.
Piedmont held a 42-36 lead midway through the third period. The Panthers went on a 10-0 run to retake the lead. Jada Brown started the run by completing a three-point play. Brunel had back-to-back layups following Piedmont turnovers, the second putting LC up 43-42. Britney Chavez's 3-pointer finished the run for a 46-42 lead with 2:55 left in the period.
The Panthers went scoreless the rest of the quarter and almost six minutes into the fourth period. Piedmont scored the last four points of the third period and the first 11 of the fourth to take a 60-49 lead. Megan English's three-point play snapped the scoring drought with 4:07 remaining in the game. Skinner answered English's play with a 3-pointer to push Piedmont's lead back to 11 and the Panthers never got closer than nine points the rest of the way.