MOUNT OLIVE – Behind a season-high 21 assists, the Trojans pulled away in the second half to secure a 67-50 win over Mars Hill in non-conference action at Kornegay Arena Dec. 6.
With the win, the University of Mount Olive women’s basketball team improved to 4-4 overall and holds a 3-1 record this season at home. This also marks the first meeting between the sides in recent program history. Meanwhile, the Lions dropped to 3-4 this year.
Senior Laila Harris finished with a team-high 13 points on six of 14 shooting while adding six rebounds, two assists and two blocks in 25 minutes of action. Fellow senior Makayla Kimble tallied 12 points on five of 12 from the field with eight rebounds (three offensive), five assists and two steals in 29 minutes.
Junior Reagan Hune also reached double figures with 11 points on five of 10 shots while collecting five rebounds (four offensive), one block and one steal in 19 minutes off the bench. Sophomore Tiandria Tucker produced eight points, seven rebounds and one steal in 17 minutes.
In the first quarter, the Trojans held an 8-6 advantage before Mount Olive mounted a 10-2 run to stretch the lead to 18-8 with 1:29 left in the quarter. The Lions scored four of the final five points of the first to trail 19-12.
Mars Hill caught fire early in the second, using a 13-2 run to take a 25-21 lead. Mount Olive responded with back-to-back baskets to tie the contest before the Lions took a 31-28 lead with 3:21 left before the break. UMO closed the quarter with 12 unanswered points, led by Kimble with eight, to take a 40-31 lead at halftime.
The Trojans carried their run into the second half by scoring nine of the next 10 points to extend the advantage to 49-32 with just over seven minutes left in the third. The Trojans continued to press the advantage and led 59-37 after three. The Trojans finished the third quarter with 10 forced turnovers.
After a UMO layup to begin the fourth, the Lions chipped away at the lead with 12 straight points over six minutes to cut the deficit to 61-49 with 2:43 left. The Trojans controlled possession down the stretch and closed the contest with a 6-1 run.
Mount Olive finished the game shooting 41.4 percent (29 of 70) from the floor while converting five of 11 (45.4
percent) from three-point range. Meanwhile, the Lions shot at a 27.1 percent clip (16 of 59) from the field and made just six of 25 (24 percent) from beyond the arc. Mars Hill finished with a slight 43-42 rebounding advantage and scored 13 second-chance points. UMO tallied 40 points in the paint and 24 points off turnovers.
— From University of Mount Olive Athletics