COLUMBIA — Despite a close first quarter, the Newberry College women’s basketball team dropped to No. 2 University of South Carolina, 93-49. The game was the first recorded meeting between Newberry and South Carolina in women’s basketball action.
Meg Essex scored the Wolves first two points by sinking a jumper two minutes into the game. With six minutes left in the first quarter Emily Perry got Newberry on the board again with a jumper. Perry drained a three-pointer not even two minutes later to decrease the Gamecocks lead to 11-7. With four minutes left, Nicola Handreck was fouled going up sending her to the foul line where she sank two foul shots.
Hannah Lepaio scored her first bucket of the game off a free throw at the 2:51 mark in the first quarter. Newberry was down just four points with 2:15 left when Colleen Leung made a three-pointer. Perry followed closely after with another bucket from the arch with under two minutes left in the first quarter. In the last 45 seconds Tiffany Mitchell scored five points for the Gamecocks for a 23-16 lead. Handreck lessened the gap for Newberry with a layup.
Leaving the first quarter, the University of South Carolina only had a five point lead (23-18).
Newberry only scored eight points in the second quarter compared to USC’s 22. The Wolves scored back-to-back fast break layups two minutes in, with the first one from Leung and the second one from Perry. Kirsten Dunsmore scored her first two points of the game off two free throws with 2:55 left until the half.
Going into the third quarter, Perry led the Wolves offensively with 10 points. Leung scored five points and made one steal while Handreck scored four points and dished one assist.
Newberry didn’t get back on the board until the 7:55 mark when Perry sank her third three-pointer (53-29 USC). The Gamecocks scored 11 more points before the Wolves scored again. Handreck drained a shot from the arch to help lessen the 64-32 lead. Dunsmore scored her second set of free throws with 2:28 left in the third quarter.
Going into the fourth quarter, the Gamecocks were ahead 74-37. Newberry scored 12 points in the final game with Handreck making a layup first. At the 7:45 mark, Essex buried a three-pointer before she made a jumper just one minute later. With five minutes left in the game, Dunsmore finished a jumper off a fast break play. Perry scored the Wolves last three points with a free throw and a jumper in the last minute and a half.
For the game, Perry led the team in points with 16 points followed by Handreck with 11. The Wolves shot 78.6% from the free throw line compared to the Gamecocks who shot 71.4%.
The regular season starts at the Southeast Regional Classic hosted by Limestone on November 13-14. The home schedule begins with the South Atlantic Conference opener against Queens on Tuesday, November 24.
This release provided by Newberry College.