Nov 24, 2012
Greenville, N.C. — The Campbell women's basketball team fell Saturday night to Appalachian State, 69-54, on the opening day of the ECU Pirate Thanksgiving Tournament inside Williams Arena at Minges Coliseum. Campbell had a one-point, 49-48 lead with 10:21 left, and knotted the Mountaineers at 54 at 7:50 before going cold offensively as Appalachian State scored the final 15 points.
It was the first loss of the season for the Lady Camels, who drop to 4-1, while the Mountaineers improved to 3-1. There were four ties and eight lead changes during the contest.
Senior guard Tonisha Baker (High Point, N.C.) led the offense with 13 points followed by nine points, all in the second half, by junior forward Ashley James (Round Rock, Texas).
Pulling down a team-best eight boards was Baker. James along with sophomore forward Kiera Gaines (Mechanicsville, Va.) grabbed seven rebounds each. All of the boards for James were on the offensive end.
Also registering a career-high four assists was James as the Lady Camels worked the ball down low before distributing it to open teammates. Freshman guard RaeChaun Edwards (Spring Grove, Va.) added four assists, a new personal best.
Campbell had numerous opportunities against the Mountaineers, but shot .317 pct. from the field and .250 from behind the arc. Every time that the Lady Camels made a run it seemed Appalachian State had an answer with a momentum changing three as App went 6-of-14 from three-point range.
Anna Freeman and Raven Gary paced the contest with 17 points each. Chipping in 13 points was Maryah Sydnor. A. Freeman had a game-high 12 rebounds, six on each end. The Mountaineers shot at a .433 rate during the contest and notched 20 points off turnovers.
Campbell, although it gave a couple of inches in height to the Appalachian State starters, won the battle in the paint, 26-24, and came up just short in the rebounding margin, 38-40.
Both teams opened the first half at a blistering pace as a jumper by junior guard Monique Spry (Wilson, N.C.) provided the Lady Camels with a 9-8 lead at 16:56. Appalachian State made the first run with a 17-11 lead before a three from Edwards and layup by Baker knotted the contest at 17 with 9:19 left in the half.
The Mountaineers next raced to an 11 point advantage, 30-19 at 4:13, before Campbell made a charge before halftime. Freshman guard Zena Lovette (High Point, N.C.) drained a three and Edwards made four shots from the charity stripe to cut the Mountaineers advantage to six, 32-26.
App played at a quick pace that tends to speed up an opponent's offense and defense. The Lady Camels adjusted well towards the end of the first half as the team grabbed nine offensive boards and turned the ball over just nine times in the frame.
Just when it appeared that Appalachian State with an eight-point lead might survive a couple of early costly mistakes, which could have led to points, by the Lady Camels, James stepped up and knocked in consecutive jumpers to the left of the basket, putting Campbell within four, 38-34 with 15:26 left.
Another instance when the Mountaineers appeared to ready to extend their lead to double-figures, 44-36, Baker nailed a three-pointer. That shot led to diligent rally by the Lady Camels as sophomore guard Roslyn Presley (Petersburg, Va.), Baker and Cooper hit shots to cut the deficit to one, 46-45 with 11:21 remaining.
Following a made jumper and a sequential foul shot by James, back-to-back made free throws from Baker provided Campbell with a 49-48 advantage, its only lead of the half, to complete a 13-4 run at 10:21.
One of the biggest shots of the game came on the next possession as A. Freeman drained a three-point field goal from the top of the arc to stop the momentum. Campbell did fight back to knot the game, 54-54, with 7:50 on the clock.
Appalachian State took control from there as it scored the last 15 points of the game. The Lady Camels did have four or five good looks during that final stretch, but were unsuccessful in the comeback.
The Lady Camels complete the ECU Pirate Thanksgiving Tournament on Sunday with a 4:30 p.m. start against East Carolina. Campbell begins the Big South slate on Saturday with a 2 p.m. contest at UNC Asheville.
Education Day for Campbell is set for Dec. 3 at 11:45 a.m. against Columbia (S.C.) inside Gore Arena/John W. Pope, Convocation Center. The Lady Camels welcome local elementary schools to attend the contest and have set attendance records the past three seasons at the event.