Seahawks Fall To Rams In CAA Road Opener
Courtesy: UNCW Athletic Communications
RICHMOND, Virginia - VCU closed the game on a 16-4 run to break a 49-all tie and defeat UNCW, 65-53, in Colonial Athletic Association women's basketball action Sunday at the Siegel Center.
The Rams halted a two-game losing skid with the victory as they improved to 9-5 overall and 2-1 in CAA play. The Seahawks dropped to 8-6 and 1-2 with the setback as their three-game winning streak came to an end.
"I was disappointed with how we played over the final six minutes," said UNCW Head Coach Cynthia Cooper-Dyke. "After tying the game at 49-all, VCU responded to the challenge and we failed to play with the same passion and purpose we had played with prior to that point. This is an experience we are going to need to learn and grow from if we are going to be successful in the CAA this season."
Senior Andrea Barbour scored eight of her game-high 23 points during the decisive stretch that saw the Rams knock down seven of its final 11 field goal attempts and force the Seahawks into six turnovers over the final 6:42 of the contest.
Senior Courtney Hurt, ranked among the top 10 in the nation in both scoring and rebounding, joined Barbour in double figures with 21 points and a game-best 15 rebounds to post her eighth double-double of the season.
Junior Tawanna Lee scored 14 points to lead three UNCW players in double figures as junior Karneshia Garrett notched 13 and sophomore Alisha Andrews finished with 10 points and a game-high eight assists.
After a conventional three-point play by Garrett at the 7:59 mark knotted the score at 49-all, Barbour and Hurt combined for back-to-back baskets on Seahawk turnovers to give the Rams a 53-49 edge.
A free-throw by Andrews and a turnaround jumper by junior Ayoola Weaver countered a basket by VCU freshman Aprill McRae to pull the Seahawks within three, 55-52, with just over four minutes to play.
Barbour and Hurt would keep the Seahawks from drawing any closer, however, scoring VCU's final 10 points over a span of 2:41 to give the Rams their largest lead of the game, 65-52, with 1:07 remaining. A free-throw by Garrett with 40 second remaining determined the final margin.
The two teams exchanged runs to open the game as the Rams started the contest on a 9-2 spurt, only to see the Seahawks counter with seven answered points to level the score at 9-all.
The two sides traded baskets over the next eight minutes until Barbour rattled off eight straight points on a pair of baskets and four free throws to spark the Rams to a 20-6 stretch and a 37-26 cushion with 18:01 remaining.
A jumper by Garrett ended the Rams run and started a 10-2 stretch for the Seahawks that trimmed the VCU advantage to three, 39-36. The Rams would maintain a two-possession advantage over the next five minutes before UNCW used a 6-2 stretch, capped by Garrett's three-point play, to tie the game and set up the Rams final run.
UNCW returns to action Thursday when they travel to No. 21 Delaware for a 7 p.m. contest at the Bob Carpenter Center. VCU is back on the floor Wednesday when it hosts Old Dominion in a 7 p.m. tip.
2 - Tawanna Lee
4 - Alisha Andrews
10 - Abria Trice
40 - Karneshia Garrett