No. 13 Carson-Newman Defeats Mars Hill, 88-80, On The Road Saturday
MARS HILL, N.C. – The No. 13
Carson-Newman Lady Eagles remained perfect on the season Saturday,
defeating Mars Hill, 88-80, in South Atlantic Conference action at
Stanford Arena. C-N moves to 13-0 on the year with a 3-0 mark in
league play while the Lady Lions are 4-10 overall and 1-2 in the
“Mars Hill came out and played hard,” said ninth-year Head Coach Dean Walsh. “They play people really tough at home and they brought it today. They are a battle tested team as well and have played some really tough teams like Florida Tech and Fort Valley State tight this year.”
The homestanding Lady Lions got out to an 8-2 lead before Carson-Newman tied the contest at 10 with 13:42 to go in the first half. Mars Hill pushed their lead to six points twice more in the first half, but C-N was able to reel them back in to tie the score at 35 apiece with less than a minute left before the break. A layup by Beth Miller (Burlington, N.C.) with three seconds to go gave the Lady Lions the 37-35 advantage going into the locker room.
“I was disappointed with our rebounding effort and our free throw percentage but that’s something we are going to work on,” added Walsh. “The bottom line is that we got a conference win on the road and that we’re 13-0. We know what we have to work on before Wednesday.”
The second half was as back-and-forth as the first featuring seven ties and five lead changes. Carson-Newman took the lead for good with 6:34 remaining on a three-pointer from freshman guard Candis Clear (Memphis, Tenn.).
Neither team led by more than six until the 3:25 mark when the Lady Eagles went up by seven on a mid-range jumper by junior guard Mandy Mendenhall (Kingston Springs, Tenn.). After that, Mars Hill would not get any closer than five points as C-N held on for the 88-80 victory.
Lady Eagle senior guard Ashley Kyle (Jefferson City, Tenn.) led all scorers with 23 points and added four rebounds, four assists and three steals, going 10-for-15 from the charity stripe.
Mendenhall finished the night with 19 points and added seven assists and three blocks for C-N, while senior forward Shari Buford (Hampton, Ga.) registered her third double-double in five contests (16 points, 14 rebounds) and added three blocks as well.
Brittini Young (Ramseur, N.C.) paced the Lady Lions with 18 points, three rebounds and three assists and Krystal Moore (Summerfield, N.C.) picked up 12 points off the bench for Mars Hill.
Carson-Newman outshot Mars Hill by a 46.8 percent (29-for-62) to 41.9 percent (31-for-74) clip. The Lady Eagles dominated from the free throw line, going 25-for-38 from the stripe compared to just 11-for-15 by the Lady Lions.
“We did a great job being aggressive and attacking in the second half. Thirty-five of our free throw attempts came after the break and that was one of the things that propelled us to win,” continued Walsh.
Carson-Newman will return home for just the second time in nearly two months on Wednesday when it plays host to the Wingate Bulldogs in SAC action. The contest is set for a 6:00 p.m. tip.
“They are a clone of us,” Walsh added of Wingate. “They are going to run and push and press. Coach (Barbara) Nelson going to throw 13 players at us and that’s going to include one of the best players in the league in Kurie Washington.”
-Joe Matthews, C-N Sports Information