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Lady Eagles can't keep up with UTC

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — A 35-22 first-half scoring deficit proved too much for the Georgia Southern Lady Eagles to overcome in a 67-52 loss to the Chattanooga Lady Mocs. GSU trailed by two points in the second-half scoring but was unable to erase a 24-point UTC lead.

"We had some progress tonight, and I thought we did some good things," said Head Coach Rusty Cram. "That was the best game from our post collectively all year. Their post was the difference in the ballgame. They are good and we knew that going in."

Jordi Cook set a career high with 12 points on two treys and four-of-six shooting for Georgia Southern (3-18, 1-13). Meredyth Frye joined her with 12 points, the most she has scored in seven contests. Frye connected on four field goals and pulled down a team-high six rebounds. Two other Lady Eagles pulled down six rebounds, but the Lady Mocs out-rebounded them 42-33.

"Jordi grew up some tonight and did a good job out there. She is going to be a good player for us down the stretch," said Cram. "She had 80 people on the pass list tonight if that tells you anything about the pressure she might have been under."

Taylor Hall led Chattanooga (18-7, 13-3) with a double-double of 19 points and 15 rebounds. Whitney Hood joined Hall in double figures with 17 points on seven-of-16 shooting. Kayla Christopher powered the offense with five assists in 30 minutes of action. The Lady Mocs shot 41.3% from the floor in the game and connected on nearly half of their shots in the first half.

Georgia Southern kept Chattanooga within arm's reach for most of the first half, trailing by four after MiMi DuBose (Jefferson, Ga.) hit a three with 12:49 remaining. A free throw from Frye kept the Lady Eagles within five points with just over seven minutes remaining, but GSU would score only one other basket in the period. The Lady Mocs finished the half with an 11-2 run over nearly five minutes to take a 35-22 halftime lead.

Chattanooga opened the second half with a 7-2 run and jumped ahead 42-24 with a basket by Whitney Hood. Georgia Southern was unable to keep pace and trailed 50-26 after a trey from Taylor Hall. The Lady Eagles responded with a 12-4 to pull within 16 points with 7:33 remaining. Frye drove into the paint and drained a layup to pull GSU within 11 points. Georgia Southern trailed by just nine with 3:38 to play but could not get any closer.

The Lady Eagles return home for their final two games at Hanner Fieldhouse. The two-game homestand begins Saturday against Elon at 5 p.m. and wraps up with Senior Day on Monday against UNCG at 7 p.m.