Game 9: #2 Appalachian State 77, #3 Chattanooga 52
SoCon Tournament Central
ASHEVILLE, N.C. - No. 2 seed Appalachian State dominated the second half beating No. 3 Chattanooga 77-52 Sunday afternoon. The Mountaineers and No. 4 Samford square off for the Southern Conference Women's Basketball Championship Monday.
Maryah Sydnor had a career-high 30 points while grabbing 10 rebounds for the Mountaineers. Courtney Freeman added 15 points and seven rebounds.
Taylor Hall led Chattanooga with 14 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks. Kylie Lambert contributed 13 points as the Lady Mocs struggled to shoot the ball hitting a meager 28.6 percent from the floor (16-56) including 28.1 percent (9-32) from three-point range.
The Mountaineers led for a majority of the game. They were up nine, 49-40, after UTC's Tenisha Townsend drained a three-pointer at 14:14. It would be nearly five-and-a-half minutes before Chattanooga's next field goal.
ASU went on an 11-0 run to extend the lead to 20, 60-40, on a Sydnor layup at 9:43. Whitney Hood's free throw at 7:01 got the Lady Mocs back to within 14, 64-50, but that's as close as the Mountaineers allowed it to get.
ASU scored 13 unanswered points, methodically building its largest lead of the contest, 27 at 77-50, on a three-point play by Courtney Freeman with 58 ticks left. UTC did not score a field goal in the final seven minutes as the final ended at 77-52.
Chakeitha Weldon had 14 points and five assists while Anna Freeman chipped in 12 points and nine rebounds. The Mountaineers out-scored the Lady Mocs 42-14 in the paint for the game. ASU scored 20 of its points off 17 UTC turnovers as its constant pressure limited its opposition offensively.
ASU surged to a 24-12 lead on Weldon's layup at 8:01. Chattanooga started one of nine from three-point range but found its range down 12. Lambert, Hall and then Lambert again nailed treys on consecutive possessions to whittle the lead to five, 26-21, with 6:11 to play in the half.
The Lady Mocs tied the score at 28 on Hood's free throw at 3:14 capping a 16-4 run. But the Mountaineers were up to the task scoring the final five points of the half for a 33-28 halftime cushion.
The championship game airs at 5 p.m. on SoCon Sports Network and ESPN3.com. It is a rematch of last year's final that Samford won 57-54 in Chattanooga.