JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Fifth-ranked Carson-Newman shot 50 percent from the floor against the third-best field-goal percentage defense in America in a 99-61 South Atlantic Conference victory at Holt Fieldhouse Wednesday evening.
"I'm just proud of our kids," Carson-Newman coach Mike Mincey stated. "I was upset at the half but at the end of the game I was smiling. Anderson is a very good team. The score is not indicative of how good of a team they actually are. They are a good defensive team. They are a good rebounding team. The stat line looks good across the board for Carson-Newman and I couldn't be happier as a coach."
With the triumph, Carson-Newman (21-1, 13-1) clinches a regular-season sweep of Anderson (13-8, 7-6) for the third time (2011-12 and 2015-16). The Lady Eagles have won 17 straight home games, the 10th-longest active string in Division II.
After the two sides traded baskets to open the game, the Lady Eagles reeled off nine unanswered points over a 1:17 period to gain separation. Anderson cut the deficit to seven with 3:49 before a 7-1 sequence stretched the lead to double figures. The lead after a frame was 12 at 27-15 thanks to 50 percent shooting from the floor for C-N.
To open the second stanza, Mincey's club came out firing making seven of their first 11 shot attempts. An 8-0 run over a 1:39 segment pushed the lead to a half-high 21 points at 42-21 with five minutes to go before halftime.
It would be the final time that C-N scored in the first half as Anderson closed the gap to 11 thanks to a 10-0 run to make it 42-31 at the break. The Lady Eagles missed their final seven shot attempts of the half.
The two sides were even for the first five minutes of the third stanza as Anderson trailed by 10 at 52-42. An 8-2 sequence for the home group pushed the margin to 16 points. C-N forced nine turnovers scoring 13 points on those giveaways in the quarter. Kelci Marosites (Elizabethton, Tenn.) went on a personal 9-0 scoring run with three triples in the span of 34 seconds to close the third and make it a 73-49 game going to the final frame.
"I was just happy to push that lead up with the help of my teammates," Marosites said. "I knew we were going to wear them down and eventually get that lead to extend."
Carson-Newman opened the fourth quarter with the first seven points as the scoring run tallied to 16-0 spanning the third and fourth periods. Anderson went without points over a 5:34 stretch. The Lady Eagles shot 61 percent from the floor in the stanza to put a bow on the win.
C-N forced 26 turnovers overall in the contest and scored 37 points off of those giveaways. Anderson entered the game fourth in the country in rebound margin at plus-11 but the Lady Eagles got the better on the glass at 40-31 scoring 19 second-chance points.
Four players notched double-digit scoring outings for the fifth-ranked team in the country. Haris Price (Gatlinburg, Tenn.) ended the night with 20 points, seven assists, five rebounds and four steals going 10-for-14 from the floor.
Off of the bench, Kelci Marosites scored a career-high 19 points going 5-for-8 from long range in 20 minutes of playing time. She added three caroms, two assists and two steals.
Anderson was led in scoring by Cassie Ketchum's 16 points, a career-high. Alexis Dillard had 12 points and five boards and Alex Mollenhauer had 11 points and nine caroms while turning the ball over seven times.
Mincey's team takes to the road for a Saturday matinee outing against Lenoir-Rhyne to open February at 2 p.m. from Hickory, N.C. Radio coverage starts at 1:45 p.m. on 106.3 (WPFT-FM, Sevierville) and cneagles.com/live on the Eagle Sports Network.
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