MARS HILL, N.C. (SPECIAL TO WLAF) – Lindsey Taylor went off for 33 points and 10 rebounds pacing 23rd-ranked Carson-Newman to an 87-68 victory over Mars Hill Monday night at Chambers Gymnasium extending the team’s winning streak in South Atlantic Conference regular-season games to eight.
Former Campbell High Lady Cougar Skylar Boshears tallied eight points in 29 minutes of action coming off a career high day of 26 points in Saturday’s home win over Lenoir-Rhyne. Bo chalked up six rebounds, three assists, two steals and a block.
“I hate to use the word saved us but obviously she was someone we could go to,” Carson-Newman coach Mike Mincey said. “We had a good matchup with her inside. She was finishing around the rim. When they were trying to put her at the free-throw line, she stepped up big by making her free throws.”
Carson-Newman (5-0, 5-0) has won 12 of the last 13 conference regular-season efforts beating Mars Hill (1-7, 1-7) for the ninth straight affair. In their first road game of the year, the Lady Eagles improve upon their league-best 26-6 SAC road record since 2017.
Taylor had scored 36 points this season before Monday night’s outburst going 12-for-14 from the field and making nine of 13 foul shots to produce her second double-double of the season.
“I’ve been practicing [free throws] a lot with [assistant coach Tatum Burstrom],” Taylor said. “We have been doing them in workouts so I felt like I was more comfortable. I knew I hadn’t been doing too good so I knew I needed to work on them. That’s what I’ve been doing these past couple weeks. I had to have the mindset that I needed to go into tonight confident.”
Braelyn Wyle (Greeneville, Tenn.) was the only other Eagle in double figures finishing with 17 points and five assists. Harli Smith (Jamestown, Tenn.) filled up the stat sheet with nine points, seven boards and six assists. Addison Byrd (Nashville, Tenn.) ripped down a career-high 13 rebounds adding eight points.
The Lady Eagles started 2-for-8 from the field falling behind 8-4, their largest deficit of the season, in the first three minutes of the game. C-N surged using a 21-4 scoring run spanning the quarters, the final 14 unanswered to jump ahead 25-12 less than 30 seconds into the second stanza. The Lions failed to score over the final 5:20 of the first quarter.
Mincey’s team expanded its margin to as many as 27 points in the second stanza before settling on a 57-33 at the break. The Orange and Blue shot 50 percent from the field scoring 14 points off of 14 turnovers and scoring 36 points in the paint.
Carson-Newman allowed the home crew to get back in the game in the third period turning the ball over 11 times leading to a dozen points. The Lions used a 6-0 surge during a four-minute scoring drought for the Lady Eagles to pull within 15 at 66-51 with 1:32 to go in the period.
After committing three turnovers in the first half, C-N had 20 in the second half scoring a total of 30 points after the break hovering around a 20-point lead in the final period.
“I can’t wait to go back and watch it because I know there some ill-advised passes,” Mincey said. “We got to where we were trying to force it inside a lot. Then we were trying to throw it to the bigs in transition. We work on those kind of things in practice where we throw the transition passes. They didn’t work out for us and it got us started on the wrong foot in the second half.”
De’Ja Marshall, the second-leading scorer in the league, finished the night with 27 points, eight rebounds and four steals. It was just the second time this year she didn’t have a double being held to half of her league-leading 16 boards per night.
Gabby Gianikos added 14 points and three pilfers with Selby Baughman tallying 13 points going 5-for-9 from the field.
Carson-Newman finished the game with 58 points in the paint attempting two shots from long range in the second half making three, three-pointers on the night.
In less than 48 hours, the Lady Eagles are back on the hardwood travelling to Greeneville, Tenn. to challenge 10th-ranked a 9-0 Tusculum at 5:30 p.m. The Eagle Sports Network hits the airwaves on 106.3 (WPFT-FM, Sevierville) and cneagles.com/live starting at 5:15 with “The Appalachian Electric Cooperative Countdown to Tip-Off”. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 01/19/2021-6AM)