February 11, 2012

Lady Saints Come Up Short Against No. 4 Clayton State

Contact: Steve Cunha, sjcunh2033@northgeorgia.edu

DAHLONEGA, GA – The North Georgia women's basketball team ran out of gas against Clayton State on Saturday afternoon falling 65-59 in Memorial Hall.

The Lady Saints (11-11, 5-8 PBC) suffered their second straight home conference loss, while the No. 4 ranked Lakers (22-2, 12-1) won their fourth straight Peach belt Conference game.

Coach Buffie Burson's squad came out gunning, jumping out to an early 9-4 lead through the first five and a half minutes of the game.

Throughout much of the opening half the Lady Saints handled the full court pressure of the Lakers quite well.

Over the next five minutes Clayton State clawed their way back into the game thanks to senior Tanisha Woodard, who provided a spark with her stout defense.

The Lady Saints would respond strong and with just under nine minutes to play, sophomore Jaymee Carnes knocked down a jumper to give North Georgia the 17-15 lead and it would prove to be the last lead they would hold all afternoon as the Lakers responded as they have done all year. 

Clayton State would answer with a 21-3 run over the next seven minutes capped by a layup by Brandice Howard to take the wind out of the Lady Saints' sails as the Lakers would take a 36-25 advantage heading into the break.

The Lakers and Lady Saints would trade baskets over the first ten minutes of the second half before North Georgia stormed back into the game on a 7-0 run capped by a Stephanie Huffman jumper with 8:10 remaining to cut the Clayton State lead to just two points at 49-47.

Over the next few minutes the two squads would trade baskets again and the Lakers built their lead back up to six points at 59-53 with just under two to play when Kayla Mobley made a layup.

The Lady Saints weren't able to muster any offense down the stretch and the Lakers escaped with the road win.

The loss was the tenth straight for the Lady Saints against the Lakers in the series.

Burson's team showed much heart playing the No. 4 ranked Lakers much tougher than in their first meeting when they lost by nearly 30 points.

Offensively, North Georgia was led once again by Carnes who scored a game-high 23 points and grabbed 11 boards. Huffman continued to impress scoring 17 and pulling down seven rebounds.

The Lakers had three players in double figures and Woodard led the way, nearly registering a quadruple-double scoring 15 points, grabbing 11 boards, dishing out eight assists and recording seven steals.

The Lady Saints return to the hardwood on Wednesday, February 15, when they travel to Milledgeville to take on Georgia College.