Aggies Break Away Late For 56-47 Victory
Courtesy: UNCW Athletic Communications
WILMINGTON, North Carolina - North Carolina A&T broke open a close game by scoring the final nine points over a three-minute span to knock off UNCW, 56-47, in a collegiate women's basketball afternoon game Thursday at Trask Coliseum.
The Aggies won their third game in four outings to improve to 8-5 overall and took their second straight over the Seahawks. UNCW dropped its seventh straight to fall to 1-9.
The matchup of instate teams was the annual "Seahawks Tomorrow" game drawing elementary school children from the Wilmington area. The crowd of 4,788 was the second largest to watch a women's game at Trask Coliseum.
Senior forward JaQuayla Berry scored 15 points and grabbed seven rebounds to pace the Aggies, who shot 40.7 percent in the contest. Sophomore guard Adriana Nazario added 10 points.
Junior guard Jessica Freeman paced UNCW with 14 points, while senior forward Karneshia Garrett had a double-double of 11 points and 14 boards. Senior center Chelsea McGowen also grabbed 11 rebounds for the Seahawks.
N.C. A&T, playing its first game of the New Year, forged out to a slim 26-25 edge at intermission and was still clinging to a 41-40 lead with 10:16 remaining after Garrett converted a layup inside.
Tracy King's layup then pushed the margin back to 48-42 at 4:48 before the Seahawks rallied to chop the deficit to 48-47 on Jessica Freeman's nifty layup with 2:55 showing.
But the Aggies scored the final nine points of the contest when Nazario drained a triple, Amber Calvin canned a jumper and Berry made a field goal and free throw. A&T wound up outscoring UNCW, 15-7, over the last 10 minutes of the contest.
UNCW raced out to an early 8-0 lead, knocking down three of its first four field goal attempts to build an early advantage.
A free throw and back-to-back layups by A&T ended the opening rally and make it an 8-5 contest, but UNCW used a pair of baskets by Freeman and a free throw by freshman Dana Brown to regain an eight-point cushion, 13-5, at 13:05 of the opening period.
The Seahawks maintained the lead over the next seven minutes before a jumper by Berry at the 6:12 mark keyed a 15-6 spurt that gave the Aggies a slim 26-25 advantage at intermission.
The Aggies stretched the halftime margin to four points early in the second half, opening the frame with a three-pointer from Nazario and back-to-back baskets by Berry to take a 33-29 edge with 15:10 showing on the clock.
A&T kept the one-possession lead over the next six minutes as the two sides traded baskets before Tarrell Robinson's club finished strong to pull out the road win.
Both teams return to action Jan. 6. UNCW opens Colonial Athletic Association play with a 2 p.m. matinee against James Madison, while N.A. A&T entertains George Washington in a 6 p.m. tip.
GAME NOTES: The Seahawks outrebounded the Aggies, 41-29...Sophomore playmaker Kelva Atkins had four assists for the Seahawks...UNCW committed 21 turnovers...The Seahawks shot 34.0 percent from the floor...The two teams combined for 8-of-33 behind the arc...UNCW had 16 offensive rebounds...There were five ties and seven lead changes in the contest...UNCW's starting lineup scored 43 of the team's 47 points...Each team played eight players.... The attendance record for a women's game at Trask is 5,263, set against Charleston Southern on Dec. 17, 2010.