HIGH POINT, N.C. The Coastal Carolina University womens basketball team (13-7, 4-3 Big South) could not overcome a sluggish first half in a 65-52 loss to High Point (12-8, 5-1 Big South) Feb. 3 in High Point, N.C. Coastal cut the lead to two points with 11 minutes in the game, but the Panthers would cut multiple Coastal runs with big baskets in the second period. The loss ended Coastals winning streak at four games.
Junior C.J. Ware (Decatur, Ga./Lakeside) hit two free throws on the games first possession, but it would be the last lead for Coastal in the contest. High Point scored the next eight points, capped by a three from Candyce Sellars. A layup from freshman Lacey Lyons (Beverly Hills, Fla./Crystal River) cut the lead to 9-5 at 13:10, but High Point went on a 7-0 run to take a 16-5 lead at 10:49. Coastal continued to struggle from the field as High Point took a 30-15 lead with 1:29 left on a three pointer from Ayanna Thompson. Senior Alisha Dill (Johnson City, Tenn./Science Hill) came back and hit a jumper with 1:09 left. High Points Amber Manuel and junior Victoria Blanchard (Eutawville, S.C./Walters State C.C.) traded baskets at the end of the half as the Panthers led 32-19 at the break.
Dill led the team with 10 points, going 6-of-6 from the free-throw line. Senior Vanessa Laug (Cincinnati, Ohio/Oak Hills) had five rebounds, while Lyons added four. High Point was led by Leslie Cooks six points. High Point outrebounded Coastal 26-19 in the first half and held the Chants to just 5-of-26 shooting from the floor.
Coastal started its comeback with a 6-0 run that featured a three-point play from Laug and a Dill jumper. Katie Ralls answered for the Panthers with a jumper at 17:58, but senior Calisha Yates (Columbus, Ind./Chattanooga State C.C.) drilled a three to make it 34-29. Wares two free throws at 16:23 cut the lead to three, but High Point scored the next five points, capped by a Cook three, to stretch it to 39-31 HPU. Down 43-34 at 13:05, Coastal would make another run. Yates hit a three, Dill made 1-of-2 free throws and Lyons hit one free throw, grabbed her own rebound and scored. After all of that, Coastal was down only 43-41 with 11 minutes left. Coastal then played great defense on the next possession, but Leslie Cook nailed a 30-footer with time running out on the shot clock. Andrea Tucker scored on High Points next time down the court, as the Panthers had a 48-41 lead with 9:44 left. Four points from Dill made it 48-45 with 8:50 left, but Coastal would not score another point for 3:43. In that time, High Point got seven points from Manuel, giving the Panthers a 55-45 lead. The Coastal deficit would never get closer than seven points as the Lady Chanticleers fell to 13-7 on the year.
Dill scored 26 points on 7-of-19 shooting from the field. She also was 11-of-14 from the line. Yates added seven points in the loss and had six rebounds. Laug led the way in the rebounding category with seven. Coastal shot 30.6 percent from the field and were 19-of-27 from the free-throw line.
High Point had three players in double figures, led by Manuel and Cook with 14 points apiece. Sellars added 11. Manuel had eight rebounds for the Panthers, while Caitlin Thys added eight points and seven rebounds.
High Point outrebounded Coastal 41-35 The Panthers were 12-of-14 from the free-throw line and forced 12 Coastal turnovers.
Coastal ends its three-game roadtrip with a non-conference affair against Savannah State Monday, Feb. 5. Game time is at 7 p.m.