CONWAY, S.C. -- The Coastal Carolina women's basketball team opened its season Saturday night at home against Coker College, and demonstrated what life is like with and without Nikki Reddick.
Reddick, who redshirted last season after a spectacular debut as a freshman, had a miserable first half, committing three turnovers without scoring a point as the Lady Chanticleers struggled to a 22-21 halftime lead. The second 20 minutes was significantly improved however, as Reddick poured in 28 points, including eight straight when Coastal took a three point lead, and extended it to 38-27 midway through the second half as the Lady Chants rolled to a 57-37 win. The victory moves Coastal to a perfect 27-0 all-time against Coker.
The Cobras (0-1) jumped out quickly, taking a 14-5 lead 12:18 into the game on Shamae Hemingway's free throws, but the presence of senior Michelle Rodriguez coming off the bench helped spark CCU's comeback. Rodriguez, a normal starter who is nursing a foot injury, buried a 3-pointer to begin the run, before assisting on Rebekah Ingle's layup and scoring one of her own to cut the lead to two points in under two minutes of playing time. Back-to-back three's by Rodriguez and Whitney Shearer gave Coastal its first lead of the game, 19-17 at the 5:20 mark, as CCU escaped with the one-point lead at the break.
From there on it was all Reddick, as she scored a career-high on 8-of-17 shooting, including three 3-pointers, and 9-of-11 from the line, adding five steals.
Rodriguez was second in scoring for Coastal with eight points, adding four rebounds and three assists, while freshman Courtney Brown pulled down a game-high 10 rebounds in her collegiate debut. Selena Davis led Coker with 11 points, while Hemingway finished with eight points and 10 boards.
The Lady Chants will play their next four games on the road, before hosting Brevard December 12.