The UNCP woman’s basketball team returned home to take on the Mountain Lions of Young Harris College, after a debilitating road loss to Augusta, on Feb. 10 during alumni weekend.
The Braves remained in contention for the final spot in the Peach Belt Conference playoff seating by allowing a season-low 50 points to the Mountain Lions, which included allowing just 13 points to be scored by the visitors in the second half alone.
“I told our girls we couldn’t control how they shot it, but we could control when they shot contested shots, and I felt we did a decent job with contested shots,” Head coach John Haskins said.
The home team jumped out to an early 6-4 lead with just over five minutes in the opening period, but Young Harris responded with a 13-2 run to take a 17-8 lead into the second quarter. The visitors would hold a nine-point lead half way through the second period until the Braves went on a 13-4 scoring run and the teams went into the locker room tied up 34-34 at the half.
Coming out of the break in action, the Black and Gold defense tightened up and limited the Mountain Lions to just nine points in the entire third period. The Braves outscored their opponent 22-9 and held them to just 3-15 shooting and a whopping 0-8 from the perimeter to build a 56-43 lead heading into the final quarter of play.
The defense would continue their second half dominance by allowing just seven more points and holding Young Harris to a measly 2-17 shooting in the final period to secure a nearly 20-point margin of victory.
“I thought the big thing in the second and third quarters was that we were very aggressive offensively. We were able to score, we got the ball inside, we made some shots from the perimeter,” Haskins said. “I thought our offense was very aggressive at attacking, I thought late in the game we kind of held on and then backed off. We were aggressive, but we also wanted to kill some clock.”
Seniors Nyla Allen tied fellow senior Ebone Stevens for the team lead in scoring on the night with a dozen a piece. This marked not only Allen’s 17th-straight contest scoring double digit points, but she also recorded her fifth double-double of the season and third in the last Braves’ last five contests.
Sophomore Aliyah Farmer and Junior Alecia Hardy both corralled 10 rebounds each and they both fell a few buckets shy of notching double-doubles of their own.