No. 2 Furman, No. 7 Samford 52
ASHEVILLE, N.C. – No. 2 Furman’s middle was better than No. 7 Samford’s start and finish in the quarterfinals of the Ingles Southern Conference Women’s Basketball Championship presented by General Shale. The Paladins turned the tables in a 67-52 triumph.
The Bulldogs were in prime position through 10 minutes, leading 20-10. Furman outscored the Bulldogs 42-14 in second and third quarters to surge into the lead and never look back.
It was a 13-point deficit after Cassidy Williams’ 3-pointer when Furman made its move. Le’Jzae Davidson started a 20-4 run to the break. The Paladins allowed just two scoring possessions over the last 8:30 of half.
It was more of the same in the third period. The Paladins extended to the run to 40-9, winning the third 20-5. For 18:44 of clock time, the Paladins limited their opposition to just four made baskets. Natalie Armstrong got the Bulldogs some momentum starting the fourth.
Her scores started and ended an 18-7 run, cutting an 18-point Paladin advantage to seven. Her 3 with 2:25 to go gave the Bulldogs hope down 59-52.
They forced a turnover but could not get the ball to fall on the ensuing possession. Furman made nine of 10 free throws down the stretch to earn the 15-point victory.
Tierra Hodges came off the bench to lead the Paladins with 17 points and 13 rebounds. Davidson chipped in 15. Armstrong paced the Bulldogs with 17 points, six rebounds and three blocks.
No. 2 Furman 18-12 | No. 7 Samford 10-20
3 Notes to Know
- Furman swept the season series 3-0. It allowed just 77 total points in the regular season, 43.0 points per game for the three combined.
- The Bulldogs were limited to 39.2-percent shooting, which was their best mark this year against Furman. Shot 32.9 percent (47-143) over the three games.
- The Paladins are making their first trip to the semifinals since 2016. They avenged last year’s 59-58 quarterfinal loss to the Bulldogs.
3 Stats to Know
- Samford held a 38-25 advantage in the first and fourth period, while the Paladins as mentioned above dominated the middle quarters 42-14.
- The Paladins took advantage of nearly every Samford turnover. They tallied 21 points on the 12 miscues, 1.75 points per mistake.
- Another area in Furman’s favor was second-chance points, where it held a 13-2 advantage. The Paladins only granted three offensive boards to the Bulldogs, dominating the defensive glass with a 90.3 defensive-rebound percentage.
No. 3 Chattanooga 72, No. 6 UNCG 62
ASHEVILLE, N.C. – No. 3 Chattanooga held off a late charge by No. 6 UNCG in a 72-62 win in the U.S. Cellular Center. The contest was the final quarterfinal matchup of the Ingles Southern Conference Women’s Basketball Championship presented by General Shale.
The Mocs got off to a strong start and were in firm control leading 60-46 with 4:29 to play on a nice move at the basket by Lakelyn Bouldin. The Spartans made a game of it.
Cece Crudup started it with a 3-pointer on the ensuing possession. Eboni Williams made the second of two free throws to get the lead back to 12. Aja Boyd and Alexus Willey layups book-ended a defensive stop to cut the margin to eight, 61-53, as the clock ticked inside three minutes.
Turnovers plagued the Mocs, but their opponent could not take advantage. Arianne Whitaker got the lead to 10, 63-53, a little over a minute later. The Spartans were not shaken.
Nadine Soliman and Crudup sandwiched another turnover with five quick points. The lead was just five, 63-58, with 1:19 to play. Chattanooga settled in from there. It went 9-10 from the free throw line down the stretch to offset the UNCG scoring on three of its next four possessions before the Mocs pulled away.
Bouldin led all scorers with 20 points adding eight rebounds. Whitaker chipped in 13 points and 17 boards. Soliman paced the Spartans with 19, 11 coming in the final 7:45.
The Mocs advance to the semifinals to meet No. 2 Furman. The two square off Friday at 1:15 p.m., on ESPN+
No. 3 Chattanooga 14-16 | No. 6 UNCG 12-18
3 Notes to Know
- Chattanooga avenged a 70-66 double overtime loss to the Spartans in last year’s quarterfinals.
- Spartans junior G Nadine Soliman ends her junior season with 1,559 points. She’s 348 points shy of Lucy Mason’s school record 1,907.
- The Mocs are making their 28th semifinal appearance, which is by far the most in the league. Former member Appalachian State is second with 16. UTC advanced to the final 18 times.
3 Stats to Know
- Mocs F Arianne Whitaker tied her career high of 17 boards with 14 coming on the defensive end. It’s the 16th double-figure rebounding game of her three-year career.
- UNCG scored 27 of its 62 points in the fourth quarter. Shot 57.1 percent (12-21) from the field in the fourth, 25.5 percent (13-51) over the first 30 minutes.
- Chattanooga was +4 on the glass but still yielded 17 offensive rebounds which matched the Spartans top number vs. a SoCon opponent in 2018-19 (at Wofford, Jan. 12).
2019 Ingles Southern Conference Women’s Basketball Championship presented by General Shale schedule
Thursday, March 7
Game 1 – No. 1 Mercer 55, No. 8 Western Carolina 32
Game 2 – No. 5 Wofford 75, No. 4 ETSU 66
Game 3 – No. 2 Furman 67, No. 7 Samford 52
Game 4 – No. 3 Chattanooga 72, No. 6 UNCG 62
^ - Denotes approximate game time. The first game on March 7 will have a firm start time. Each game thereafter will start 30 minutes following the conclusion of the preceding game but will not start prior to the listed time.
Friday, March 8
Game 5 – No. 1 Mercer vs. No. 5 Wofford, 11 a.m.
Game 6 – No. 2 Furman vs. No. 3 Chattanooga, 1:15 p.m.
Sunday, March 10
Game 7 – Game 5 winner vs. Game 6 winner, 12 p.m.
NOTE: All times Eastern. All games to be broadcast on ESPN+. Sunday’s championship game will air on select Nexstar affiliates