Tigerville, S.C.—The North Greenville women's basketball team dropped its first conference matchup of the season on Tuesday night, as the Emmanuel College Lions used a late second half surge to take a 71-66 decision over the Crusaders.
Timisty Nelson was NGU's only player in double-digits, scoring 10 points while also surpassing the 1000-point mark for her career. Tyler Powers finished the night with nine points, while going 2-7 from three-point range, while Alisha Hope, Cameron Carter, and Cortney Williams also finished with nine points.
The Crusaders led for most of the first half, falling behind only once when the Lions earned a 24-23 advantage with 6:43 left in the first period. NGU regained its lead and took a six-point lead into intermission. NGU put together its best offensive half of the season during Tuesday's opening frame, shooting 53.3 percent from the field while the Lions shot just 35.1 percent.
The Crusaders continued to lead by a formidable margin for much of the second half, leading by as many 11 points. Emmanuel finally went on the offensive with 11:53 on the clock, going on a 14-4 run to even the tally at 60-60. Emmanuel then took its second lead of the game after each team suffered through a short scoring drought, as two free throws gave the Lions a 62-60 lead.
North Greenville which struggled offensively in the second half, scored their first points in more than four minutes with 2:21 left on the clock to pull to within four of EC. Tyler Powers would later pull North Greenville to within three, with NGU getting the chance to tie at 67 after an Emmanuel Turnover, but The Crusaders would give the ball right back and the Lions would hit a pair of free throws to go back up by two possessions (69-64).
NGU would finally run out of answers, as the clocked ticked down to zero, as the Lions completed the comeback to remain undefeated with a 2-0 record in Conference Carolinas play. North Greenville was a completely different team offensively in the second half, shooting just 32.1 percent from the floor while the Lions improved to 40 percent. Emmanuel also out rebounded NGU 46-33, the first time NGU had been outrebounded by more than five, this season. The Crusaders held a slight 33-28 advantage in points in the paint, while the teams were close to even in points off of turnovers as EC had just one more than NGU which had 16.
The Crusaders will return from thanksgiving break on Friday and hit the road for a non-conference matchup with Carson Newman College on the 29th. NGU will return to conference play on December 2nd on the road at Pfeiffer University before a December 3rd exhibition with Western Carolina. NGU and Carson Newman will tip off at 2pm in Jefferson City, Tennessee.