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April 17, 2024 5:26 am

UMO falls short against Barton

MOUNT OLIVE – The Trojans were unable to overcome a fourth-quarter surge from Barton on Feb. 1 in a 71-65 loss in Conference Carolinas play at Kornegay Arena.

With the loss, the University of Mount Olive women’s basketball team fell to 11-12 overall with a 7-8 mark in conference action. The rivals split the season series for the first time since 2018 with both road teams winning this season. Meanwhile, Barton improved to 6-14 this year behind a 6-7 record in league play.

Freshman Laila Anderson led the team with a career-high 25 points on nine of 17 attempts while making five of six from the free-throw line. She also matched her career-high with six steals and added two rebounds while playing all 40 minutes. The Burlington School product has started the last five games for the Trojans and is averaging 13.4 points per game in that span.

Senior Makayla Kimble scored in double-figures with 10 points while tallying three rebounds, four assists, two steals and one block in 33 minutes. Junior Reagan Hune finished with 10 points on five of eight from the field with eight rebounds, two assists and one steal in 33 minutes. Sophomore Tiandria Tucker posted nine points on four of four shooting while totaling two rebounds, three assists, one steal and one block in 23 minutes.

In the first quarter, the Bulldogs raced out to a 7-3 advantage in the opening two-plus minutes after knocking down three of five from the floor. Over the next four minutes, Mount Olive rallied off a 16-4 run, led by Anderson with seven points, to establish a 19-11 lead with 2:09 left in the quarter. Barton responded by scoring five of the final seven points, as the Trojans led 21-16 after one.

Anderson nailed a huge three-pointer to begin the second quarter, but the Bulldogs quickly closed the gap and took the lead with an 11-2 rally. UMO regained the advantage with six consecutive points with under three minutes to go before tallying six more points in the final 1:27 to take a 38-30 lead into the halftime break.

Mount Olive stretched the advantage to double digits early in the third before Barton countered with a 10-2 run to trim the deficit to 42-40 with 5:43 remaining. The Trojans were able to maintain the lead over the next five minutes and took a 55-49 advantage into the final quarter.

The Bulldogs mounted a 13-0 run over the opening five-plus minutes of the fourth, while UMO went scoreless from the field during that stretch. With Barton holding a 62-55 lead, the Trojans managed to reclaim the advantage at 63-62 with 2:14 left after eight unanswered points. The Bulldogs ultimately flipped the script in the final two minutes after converting seven of nine from the line to escape with a 71-65 victory.

The Trojans finished the game shooting 45.3 percent (24 of 53) from the floor while converting 12 of 13 (92.3 percent) from the free-throw line. Meanwhile, the Bulldogs shot at a 43.9 percent clip (25 of 57) from the field and made 16 of 21 (76.2 percent) from the charity stripe. Barton finished with a 39-24 rebounding advantage and scored 32 points in the paint, while UMO finished with 21 points off 23 forced turnovers.

— From University of Mount Olive Athletics