NEWBERRY — Double digit scoring from three players was not enough for the Newberry women’s basketball team as the Lenoir-Rhyne Bears held off the Wolves 56-50 inside of Eleazer Arena on Wednesday night.
Newberry (8-5, 4-5 SAC) opened the scoring against the Bears (11-3, 6-3 SAC), before Lenoir-Rhyne took a lead that they were unable to hold comfortably early in the evening. Newberry tied the game on multiple occasions, as a 3-pointer with 13:23 remaining in the first half by junior Zara Pearson knotted the game at 11-11.
Pearson again tied things up at the 11:55 mark with a pair of free throws to make the game 13-13. Newberry regained the lead as redshirt sophomore Emily Perry hit a free throw to make things 14-13 in Newberry’s favor.
The two sides exchanged leads over the next few minutes until Jazmine Charles recovered the Bears’ lead with 2:41 remaining on a pair of free throw makes. Charles’ makes spurred the Bears to a run that would see Lenoir-Rhyne head to halftime with a nine-point advantage.
Lenoir-Rhyne extended its lead to double digits early in the second period, before Pearson’s jumper with 18:20 pulled the Wolves back within single digits. Newberry cut the L-R advantage down to three points three times in the final ten minutes of regulation, and saw the deficit shrink to only one when Pearson assisted junior Haylee Lepaio to put the score at 46-45.
The Bears scored seven straight to see their lead reach eight points with 2:32 remaining. Perry hit a three to pull the Wolves back within five, before four straight Lenoir-Rhyne points put the game out of reach of the Wolves as the Bears escaped with a 56-50 victory.
Pearson led the Wolves with 14 points, while Lepaio finished with 11 and Perry notched 10 points. Lepaio led the Wolves with seven rebounds, as Pearson snagged six. Sophomore Kirsten Dunsmore and senior Tasia Holdorf tallied six boards of their own on the evening.
Senior Ellie Gleeson added to her career assist total with five on the night, pushing her to 280 in her career. Gleeson sits four assists from Kim Poston’s 284 career assists at No. 6 in the Newberry record books.
The Wolves return to Eleazer Arena at 2 p.m. on Saturday, as Newberry plays host to Brevard.