Advantageous Eagles use fourth frame to down No. 25 Newberry

VIDEO: Game Highlights

VIDEO: Mike Mincey Interview

VIDEO: Briana Smith Interview

JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Carson-Newman scored 29 points off of turnovers and scored the first 13 points of the fourth quarter to upend 25th-ranked Newberry 71-55 and move into third place in the South Atlantic Conference standings Saturday afternoon at Holt Fieldhouse.

"We came out in the fourth quarter [in the press]," Carson-Newman coach Mike Mincey said. "Our guys picked up their energy, picked up some steals and got some stuff in transition. There for a moment, it looked like the Carson-Newman basketball of old. It went from up [six] to boom a 14-point cushion early in the fourth quarter."

Winners of six straight in the series, Carson-Newman (14-4, 7-3) has won five of those games by double figures and 10 of the last 12 over Newberry (11-4, 5-3). The Lady Eagles led for 38:12 of the contest.

Trading buckets in the opening moments saw the score tied at five before C-N rattled off nine of 13 to go on top 14-9 on a jumper from Haris Price (Gatlinburg, Tenn.) six minutes into the game. The Wolves failed to score over the final 2:34 of the first frame as C-N scored the final six points to take a 23-16 lead into the second stanza.

Spanning the break, C-N used a 9-0 burst and a 13-2 spurt to make it a 30-18 advantage on a jumper from Addison Byrd (Nashville, Tenn.) two minutes into the second stanza. The lead swelled to 13 and was a dozen with 1:53 to go in the half. Meg Essex made four foul shots and despite not making a field goal over the final 3:32 Newberry went into the locker room down 41-33.

The Wolves made 12 of their 14 attempts from inside the arc in the first half while going 1-for-12 from long range. C-N had 14 points off of 10 Newberry giveaways.

Newberry scored the first six points of the second half to cut the deficit to two at 41-39 as Carson-Newman's scoring drought reached four minutes before finding the bucket. The Lady Eagles used a 9-2 run to get the margin back to nine. Each side went cold to close the quarter as the home group went 4-for-18 from the field but held a 53-47 edge with 10 minutes to go.

Mincey's crew started the fourth frame by scoring the first 13 points of the final period as a triple from Kelci Marosites (Elizabethton, Tenn.) stretched the bulge to 19 at 66-47 with 4:50 to play. Newberry's first bucket came 30 seconds later as the team went 3-for-13 overall in the stanza.

Price led the way for the Lady Eagles with 18 points and three steals as she moved up to 14th on the school's scoring list passing Data Caldwell and Ashley Kyle on the way.

Despite playing her second-fewest minutes of the year, Kayla Marosites racked up her 12th double-double of the year with 11 points and 11 boards.

Briana Smith (Nashville, Tenn.) stuffed the stat sheet with 11 points, five rebounds, three assists and three steals while Byrd finished with 10 points and six boards.

"We were stressing pressure on their better guys," Smith said. "Our offense comes from our defense. In the third quarter we got out of our press and our offense got stagnant. He put us back in it in the fourth quarter. We turned up our defense which led us to easy offense."

Essex led the charge for the visitors finished with 19 points of six of 10 shooting adding 10 rebounds and seven rejections over 29 minutes. She was the only player in double digits as Shelby Britten added nine points and seven assists.

"They have some talented players," Mincey said. "We knew if we had a chance, we couldn't allow Essex to continue to score. We couldn't allow Britten to get hot. We didn't let their best players get going. We wanted to make sure we did a good job defensively."

The Lady Eagles get the midweek off after completing the first half of the league slate with the next game coming on Jan. 26 when Wingate arrives at Mossy Creek for a 2 p.m. opening tip.

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