Reigning region titleholders set to visit Holt

C-N Game Notes

JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Sporting a flawless record No. 19 Carson-Newman welcomes the 2016-17 Southeast Region champions, Columbus State, to Holt Fieldhouse Sunday afternoon for a 1 p.m. tip.

"They had a very talented squad last year," Carson-Newman coach Mike Mincey said. "We lost by 10 down there [last year]. We know what kind of basketball team's rolling into Holt Fieldhouse on Sunday. That's why we scheduled them. We feel like we have a really good team and we want to schedule really good teams to come in here and play. We look forward to the challenge of trying to get a win back on them. We are going to have to play really well to get a win on Columbus State."

Carson-Newman (6-0) is looking to score 90 or more points in a fourth straight game and match a program record since doing so four straight outings from Jan. 10-21, 2009. It is the fourth time in 39 seasons the school has done it thrice.

While Columbus State (2-1) leads the all-time series 7-4, the Lady Eagles have won three of the four contests played in Jefferson City including each of the last three. The only win for the Cougars at Holt Fieldhouse is also the widest margin of victory for either side of a 96-44 win for Columbus State on Nov. 26, 1999.

C-N's four wins have come by a total of 14 points in the series with the last time the Cougars visited Mossy Creek being a narrow 70-68 win for the Lady Eagles against a sixth-ranked Columbus State unit. Katie Stubblefield (Alcoa, Tenn.) made a pair of foul shots with under four seconds to play to seal the win.

Last season, Columbus State never trailed as the Cougars forced 23 turnovers and scored 44 points in the paint to win 85-75 at the Frank G. Lumpkin Jr. Center.

Mika Wester (Newport, Tenn.) led the way in the end with 20 points, nine rebounds and four assists. Briana Smith (Nashville, Tenn.) registered 16 points five assists and four rebounds. The duo of Alexis Carter and Ashley Asouzu each recorded a double-double as Carter finished with a game-high 23 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks while Asouzu had 19 points and 12 rebounds.

Columbus State is coming off of a 31-2 season that saw the Cougars earn the top seed in the Southeast Region as the club cruised to three double-digit wins before falling to No. 18 Virginia Union 78-73 in the National Quarterfinals.

From that team, Anita Howard is trying to replace third-team All-American Carter and all-region pick Asouzu and a pair of starters. Carter registered 16.6 points and 10.5 rebounds, both of which rank among the top 10 single-season totals in program history. The post player finished with a program-record 105 blocks. Asouzu finished just shy of 1,000 rebounds for her career while crossing the four-digit mark in points. She averaged over 14 points and nearly 10 boards per night.

Howard returns five players from 2016-17 and brought in 11 newcomers for a unit projected to finish second behind Lander in the Peach Belt. Machala Raymonville is one of the key fresh faces and a preseason All-PBC selection after making the move from Armstrong State's now defunct program. The senior ranked seventh in the PBC in scoring with 16.3 points per game. She is the squad's leading scorer through three games with 18.3 points per night scoring a season-high 24 against West Florida in the season opener.

The only other player averaging double figures is junior Tatiana Wayne at 16.3 posting double digits in every game this season.

Columbus St. is averaging nearly seven blocks per game this season led by seven from Jasmine Herndon and six from Chrisalyn Boston. The same duo has 21 offensive rebounds for a unit recording 20 per night on the year to rank fourth in the country in the early stages of the year.

The Cougars are turning the ball over nearly 20 times per game having committed at least 17 in all three games on the year and are shooting 35 percent as a team having not crested 40 on the year.

Broadcast coverage starts at 12:45 p.m. on the Eagle Sports regionally on 106.3 (WPFT-FM, Sevierville) and around the world with audio and video streams available on with "The Appalachian Electric Cooperative Countdown to Tip-Off".

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