Spartanburg, S.C. – North Greenville locked up the fifth seed in the Conference Carolinas playoffs on Friday night with an 84-73 win over Converse College.
Karen Donehew put the Crusaders on her back on Friday scoring 32-points to lead all scorers by a wide margin. She knocked down four three pointers and was 11 of 14 from the field. Donehew also led the team with eight total rebounds. Divonnie Powell pocketed 16-points and dished out eight assists. Ciara Suggs also had a big night with1 3-points going three of five from deep.
The Crusaders started slowly but quickly gained control, taking a 40-32 lead into halftime. The Valkyries opened the game on a 5-0 run but NGU settled in, eventually taking its first lead of the game with 3:30 left when Donehew’s jumper made the score 10-8. North Greenville led by as many as 13-points in the first half but the Valkyries closed the second quarter on another 5-0 run to cut the gap to eight.
Converse would further chip away at North Greenville’s lead in the opening minutes of the second half. A layup from Keocia Walker made the score 50-44, pulling Converse to within six points, its lowest deficit since the end of the first quarter. Ciara Suggs would answer with a three-ball to extend the lead to nine-points while Donehew would add a few free throws and a layup to extend NGU’s lead to 59-47 with 2:54 left in the third.
North Greenville would carry a 10-point edge into the final quarter, a lead which was quickly cut to eight points by the Valkyries just nine-seconds into the final frame. Converse would continue to chip away, eventually cutting NGU’s lead to seven points, but the Crusaders, who shot over 50-percent on the night responded each time, preventing a comeback from the Valkyries.
The Crusaders finished the game with 34-points in the paint while turning 22-converse turnovers into 21-points. The Crusaders improved to 14-14 overall and 11-11 in league play. North Greenville locked up the fifth seed in the tournament by winning its final five league games, and seven of its last 10-contests.
North Greenville will travel to Wilson, North Carolina on Monday night to take on the Barton Bulldogs at 7pm. The Crusaders were 0-2 versus Barton in the regular season with the second game being decided by three-points.