Basketball (W)

Late Rally Give Women's Basketball Win in Opener

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SALISBURY, N.C. -- Catawba erased a 13-point deficit in the final five minutes to post an opening win at the South Atlantic Conference/Conference Carolinas Women’s Basketball Challenge on Friday night at Goodman Gym.  Terri Rogers (Burlington, N.C./E. Alamance), with 29 points, and Bri Johnson (Statesville, N.C./N. Iredell/Belmont Abbey), with 19 points, paced the Catawba Indians to the victory.

The Lady Indians trailed 68-55 with just over four minutes to play.  Baskets by Marshauna Butler (Bowie, Md./Bowie/Stony Brook) and Serena Brown (Ft. Washington, Md./Bowie) was followed by a Johnson three-pointer to close the gap to 68-62 with 3:11 left.  Johnson added four more points to cap an 11-0 run the pulled Catawba within 68-66 with 1:57 remaining.

Felecity Havens stopped the run for Mount Olive with a jumper from the top of the key with 1:39 to go.  Johnson answered with a jumper and a put-back by Rogers with 1:01 left tied the game at 70.  After a Trojan turnover, Rogers scored off an inbounds play with 40 seconds remaining to give Catawba its first lead since holding a 42-40 edge midway through the third quarter.

Mount Olive had two shots to tie in the final 30 seconds, but Morgan Franklin (Charlotte, N.C./Charlotte Christian) rebounded the second miss and Butler hit two free throws with 10 ticks on the clock for the final margin.

Johnson scored all 19 of her points in the second half, including nine in the final 3:11.  Rogers nearly posted a double-double in the first half with 20 points and eight rebounds.  She finished with the 29 points on 13-of-19 shooting and grabbed 15 rebounds.  Butler also posted a double-double with 11 points and 10 boards.

Catawba never trailed in the opening quarter, building as much as a nine-point lead.  The Lady Indians stretched the lead to a dozen early in the second quarter before the Trojans used a 14-2 run to close the half to take a 36-33 lead to the break.

Havens led Mount Olive with 16 points.  Ni’Ya Styles followed with 11 points and Kiara Jones collected a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. 

Catawba hosts Barton on Saturday at 4 pm in the final game of the Challenge.  Queens faces Mount Olive at 2 pm.

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