Basketball (W)

Indians Earn 66-59 Road Win

BANNER ELK, N.C. – Sophomore center Talia Barnes helped Catawba outlast Lees-McRae in a defensive slugfest inside Williams Gym Monday.

Barnes, the 6-0 Durham, N.C. native, registered a double-double with 21 points and 12 boards. She was 13-of-19 from the free-throw line.

“Talia was awesome tonight,” Head Coach Terrence Baxter said. “She put us on her back and carried us. She is always on even keel – never too high or too low.“

Both teams struggled from the field but the difference in the game came at the charity stripe.

Catawba put pressure on all night, driving to the bucket and getting Lees-McRae in foul trouble early and often. The Bobcats were whistled for 36 personal fouls, resulting in 51 free-throw opportunities for the Lady Indians. They made 32, while Lees-McRae was just 9-of-16 at the line, which was the difference in the game.

Knotted at 48-48 after three quarters of play, The Lady Indians outscored their opponent 18-11 in the final frame, securing a 66-59 victory. They improved to 2-2 on the season, while the Bobcats fell to 2-2.

Catawba slowly built its lead through the final stanza, grabbing a five-point lead at 58-53 when Keyotta Garris converted a lay-up with 3:34 remaining. Lakitia Basnight’s jumper with two and a half minutes remaining trimmed Lee’s-McRae’s deficit back to three.

The Indians extended their lead to 64-55 with 37 seconds remaining, converting six consecutive free throws.The Bobcats made two field goals, while the Indians added two more points at the charity stripe for the final tally.

Taisha DeShazo added eight points for the Lady Indians, including a perfect 6-for-6 at the free-throw line. She grabbed eight rebounds.

Markia Stacey tallied a team-high 17 points for the Bobcats and Destiny Johnson added 11. Brea Forbes led her side with eight boards.

The game was tied 12 times and saw 16 lead changes, with the largest lead of nine coming with 37 seconds remaining by Catawba. Lees-McRae snagged its largest advantage at the 3:10 mark of the first quarter, when Meg Crawford’s lay-up made it 18-11.

Her squad held a 23-18 lead after the first 10 minutes of action, but it disappeared in the second quarter with a 12-7 advantage by Catawba. After the break, both teams netted 18 points in the third quarter, setting up the final frame.

Inside the Numbers:
- Catawba was 16-of-52 (30.8 percent) from the field, including 2-of-12 (16.7 percent) from the 3-point line.
- Lees-McRae shot 32.4 percent (22-68) from the field, including 37.5 percent (6-16) from downtown.
- The Indians outrebound the Bobcats 58-41, including a 20-12 advantage on the offensive glass.
- Brown, who is in his first season, bested Lee’s-McRae’s Head Coach Keith Jennings, who is in his second season as a head coach.

Up Next:
Catawba steps away from competition for the Thanksgiving Holiday. The Indians open South Atlantic Conference play Nov. 28 at Newberry at 6 p.m.

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