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Knight scores 24, Eagles win

Knight scores 24, Eagles win

Knight scores 24, Eagles win

Georgia Southern guard Anna Claire Kn...

    Anna Claire Knight dominated the first half of the game and MiMi Dubose finished with six straight free throws as Georgia Southern knocked off visiting UNC Greensboro 74-71 in Hanner Fieldhouse on Saturday.
    Knight led all scorers with 24 points and DuBose added 18.
    The Spartans never led in the game, but tied the score at 49-49 on a 3 by Bailey Williams with 10:48 remaining. The Eagles answered with a pair of free throws by Knight and a jumpers by Sierra Kirkland and Briana Jones that sparked a 14-4 run.
    “We talked about this UNCG team at halftime, how they were going to just keep coming at us and coming at us,” GSU coach Chris Vozab said. “We know we had to stay sharp and aggressive. I thought we got a little bit frantic and tried to play at a pace that wasn’t our pace and that hurt us. But we got back to being us and I was so proud of our kids.”
    UNCG cut the GSU lead back to four when back-to-back 3s by Williams and Lucy Mason made it 65-61, and after the teams traded buckets Williams drilled another 3 to cut it to 67-66.
    DuBose made four-straight free throws while Jarae Savage missed both on the other end, all but assuring the GSU victory.
    “We’re used to pressure situations, and being an upperclassman, me and (Knight) and Lacie Dowling are used to it,” DuBose said. “I have confidence in myself and I did what I had to do.”
    Savage scored off of an offensive rebound on the next UNCG possession, but DuBose all but sealed the deal with two more freebies. Jessica Collins hit one last 3 with 0.4 seconds on the clock, and a Lacie Dowling free throw after an immediate foul was good for the final margin.
    Knight dominated the first half from the tip, drilling a 3 off an assist by Dowling in the opening seconds.
    The Eagles broke the game wide open midway through the first half when they went on a 15-2 run featuring nine Knight points that put them ahead 35-21.
    “I was feeling it in the first half, just trying to attack them,” Knight said. “There seemed like there were a lot of open lanes so I just tried to take them.”
Knight finished the half with 17 and GSU led 37-27 at the break on 15 of 33 shooting from the floor including, 3 of 8 from 3-point distance.
    Jones added 10 points and 7 rebounds for the Eagles.
    UNCG was led by forward Janae Stevenson, who finished with 13 points and 9 rebounds. Savage added 10 points and Mason and Collins each added 10.
    GSU is back in action on Monday against Elon at 7 p.m.
NOTES: DuBose, who crossed the career 1,000-point threshold against Chattanooga on the road on Jan. 4, was presented with a commemorative ball before Saturday’s game. With her pair of 3-pointers against the Spartans, DuBose now trails former Eagle Svetlana Trjeskal in career 3s at GSU by five. … The Statesboro High School marching band was in attendance for both of Saturday’s games. … It was alumni day for GSU’s women’s basketball program. In attendance were Briana Scott (2013), Concella Henry (07), Lee DuBose Economos (05), Sharon Mitchell-Coleman (01), Tara Anderson-Bracewell and Janice Johnson (95), Monique McClelland and Gwenda Smith-Johnson (93) and Regina Days-Bryan (88).

    Matt Yogus may be reached at (912) 489-9408.

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