MISENHEIMER, N.C.– Barton College closed its Conference Carolinas clash at Pfeiffer University on a 23-11 run to rally for an 86-74 women’s basketball victory on Wednesday evening in Merner Gym. Junior guard Brittany Cox scored a game-high 34 points including six bombs from behind the arc.
Junior guard Faith Hunter scored a team-high 23 points, junior forward Shante Neal just missed her second straight doube-double with 20 points and nine rebounds, and sophomore Nyeshea Willie bucketed 19 points as Barton rose to 10-5 overall and 5-1 in the league. Hunter and Willie pulled down seven boards and Hunter swatted a game-high four blocks. The Lady Falcons connected on 11 three-pointers but were outrebounded by 19 (50-31) to fall to 8-7 and 3-3.
After a Cox free throw provided Pfeiffer its only lead of the first half at 1-0, Barton scored the game’s first four baskets to jump out to a quick 8-1 lead.
The Lady Bulldog defense held the Falcons without a field goal for the first six minutes to build up an early 10-2 advantage before freshman Haley Grimsley finally scored the hosts first hoop on the teams 10th shot attempt at the 13:59 mark.
A Grimsley trey pulled Pfeiffer to within three at 12-9 before Barton pulled out to its first double digit lead with the next eight points. A junior Jolanda Mitchell fastbreak layup capped the run as the Bulldogs led 20-9.
A Jadda Jefferies three-pointer extended the Bulldogs advantage to 14 (31-17) before the Falcons closed the half with a 9-4 run to narrow the halftime deficit to nine at 35-26. Cox kept the Falcons in striking distance with over half the squad’s points at 14.
Neal and Hunter, who missed the last four games due to a concussion, led Barton into locker room with 10 and nine points, respectively. Neal and Willie helped BC dominate the first half backboards, 30-19, with six rebounds apiece.
The Lady Falcons used the three-ball to rally back to start the second half. A pair of canned three-pointers by Falcon sharpshooters junior Kellie Rhoney and freshman Jodie Lemons in the first 90 seconds started the Pfeiffer comeback.
Cox closed out the 13-4 second half start by the Falcons with the final five points to deadlock the score for the first time at 39-39.
Barton continued to cling to a slim lead until Pfeiffer made its eighth 3-pointer with 14:01 left off the hand of Lemons put the Falcons ahead for the first time since 1-0 at 46-45. The game stayed close for the next eight minutes with Pfeiffer taking its largest lead at 58-53 on another trifecta by Cox at the 9:39 mark.
The Bulldogs trailed 65-63 with six and a half minutes left before racing ahead with a game-changing, 10-nil outburst that was highlighted by a Willie trey and a Hunter three-point play. Barton maintained at least a three-possession lead for the final four minutes.
Both teams shot 41.5% from the floor. Pfeiffer sizzled the nets from long range going 11-of-26 (42.3%) from deep compared to just 4-of-13 (30.8%) by Barton but the Lady Bulldogs took advantage of 21 more free throw attempts. BC canned 28-of-33 (84.8%) from the charity stripe in comparison to 9-of-12 (75%) by the Falcons.
Mitchell finished with 10 points and senior Jannetta Robinson tallied eight as Barton’s starting five scored 80 of the team’s 86 points. Robinson snatched a game-high 10 rebounds and dished out a team-high four assists. Lemons totaled 11 points for Pfeiffer. Rhoney flirted with a double-double with nine points and a game-high nine assists.