Saints surge past Bobcats, 71-45

Box score

GAFFNEY, S.C. --- The Limestone College women's basketball team utilized a strong first half performance on Thursday afternoon en route to a 71-45 win over Lees-McRae College in Conference Carolinas play.

Limestone (9-4, 3-0 CC) shot an even 50 percent from the floor on Thursday night, holding Lees-McRae (5-3, 1-1 CC) to a 33.9 percent clip while winning the battle on the glass by a decisive 49-25 margin, including a 36-17 advantage on the defensive boards. The Saints converted 21 Bobcat turnovers into 23 points, while outscoring LMC by a 36-28 margin in the paint.

Icey Patterson (Seneca, S.C.) paced the Bobcats with 14 points on 7-of-16 shooting, while DeAnna Waters (Upper Marlboro, Md.) and Kerri Belcher (Roanoke, Va.) added nine and six markers, respectively. Chloe Parker (Chicago, Ill.) chipped in a team-high six rebounds, while Patterson posted a contest-best five steals.

Maria Young led the way for Limestone with a game-high 15 points, while Kaileigh West added a double-double with 12 markers and a contest-best 11 rebounds. Ashley Robinson chipped in 10 points and six boards, while Stephanie Hayes posted a game-high five steals.

Limestone never trailed in the game, opening an early 14-4 lead on a pair of Young freebies before the Bobcats responded with an 11-4 run, cutting the margin to 18-15 on a layup by Natalija Cakarevic (Belgrade, Serbia) at the 7:41 mark. The Saints would respond with a 21-9 surge to close out the half, taking a 39-24 lead into the intermission following a late jumper by Young.

The Saints carried the momentum into the second half, pushing the lead to 53-30 with a 14-6 spurt over the first six minutes of the period. Limestone would hold on from there, widening the margin to as many as 29 points down the stretch.

Lees-McRae returns to the court on Saturday when the Bobcats host Pfeiffer University to continue their conference slate. Tip-off is slated for 2 p.m. in Williams Gymnasium.

- LMC -