By Joshua J. Darling, Sports Information Director
MONTGOMERY, Ala. – A pair of impressive rebounding efforts and timely scoring helped fuel LaGrange's (9-4, 3-1 CCS) 64-51 victory at Huntingdon (2-9, 0-3 CCS) in an NCAA Division III women's basketball game on Wednesday, January 11.
Freshman forward Skylar Edwards (Canton, Ga.) just missed a double-double, yanking down 12 boards to go with nine points and a pair of blocks while her fellow first-year frontcourt running mate Amanda McLendon (Orlando, Fla.) hauled in a game-high 14 caroms to go along with six points.
Senior guard Gracie Brunel (Broxton, Ga.) dropped 18 points behind 7-of-10 shooting from the foul line and added four rebounds and three steals and senior forward Breonna Glover (Macon, Ga.) added clutch scoring of her own. She would finish with 15 points, nearly half of that to start the second quarter, and grab eight boards to round out the top performances.
The Hawks would jump out to the early 6-3 lead behind three different scorers before LC asserted its will over the final seven minutes of the opening period. Sparked by a tying triple from Brunel, the Panthers scored 11 straight as part of a commanding 14-2 run that left them with a 17-8 advantage at the quarter break.
It would be the Glover show to start the second as she scored LaGrange's first seven points to extend to a 24-10 lead, and overall 21-4 stretch, by the 6:57 mark. Back-to-back buckets by Briana McGruder then finally stemmed the tide and brought it to a 10-point deficit with just under six minutes to play in the opening half.
A pair of Brunel free throws would push it back to 12 before four different scorers engineered an 8-0 run in a span of 1:35 to narrow the gap to just 26-22 with 3:45 on the clock. From there, however, it would be fairly even as the clubs combined for seven points to head into the half with the Panthers holding a narrow 28-27 lead.
HC would come out of the break scoring five of the first nine points to deadlock at 32-32 by the 7:14 mark only to see five straight points from Brunel key an 8-0 run to retake the lead at 40-32 with 3:13 on the clock. Nearly two minutes of scoreless play would then be broken by the teams trading buckets, Kinstin Davis for Huntingdon and sophomore guard Kendra Roberts (Warner Robins, Ga.) for LC, before heading to the fourth with a 44-34 margin.
The Panthers pushed that lead to 48-36 over the first two minutes of the final period before HC got the margin back under double-digits, 50-41, but it would be the last time until less than three minutes showed on the clock. That 59-50 margin with 2:43 remaining would wind up with LaGrange salting away the 64-51 victory minutes later.
Alina Shoemake just missed a double-double of her own for the Hawks as she finished with seven points and team-high 10 caroms along with three steals with Kinstin Davis not far behind at 10 points and nine boards. A.B. Davis led the way with 13 points to go with six rebounds and McGruder chipped in with nine points, six caroms and a pair of blocks.
The Panthers are right back in action on Saturday, January 14 as they travel to Belhaven. Tip-off is set 3 p.m. EST in Jackson, Mississippi.