WINGATE, N.C. - The Mars Hill women's basketball team dropped their sixth straight contest in a 91-49 loss to No. 14 Wingate Saturday afternoon in Cuddy Arena. Sheena Johnson led the Lions with 13 points.
The Lions (1-7, 0-2 SAC) held a 3-2 lead for the first three minutes of the contest off of Johnson's 3-pointer 1:22 into the frame. The teams traded baskets until the 4:11 mark of the first quarter where Morgan Simmons 3-pointer fell to give the Bulldogs a 7-6 lead. From there, Wingate would string together a 19-3 run to go into the second quarter leading 26-9. Simmons had eight points in the half to lead all players.
In the second quarter, the teams played a more tightly contested game. Wingate (6-1, 2-0 SAC) outscored the Lions 21-17 to lead 47-28 entering halftime. Mars Hill opened the half on an 8-5 run, but five straight points from Caroline Averette extended the lead to 19 points. The Lions would trail by as many as 25 with less than three minutes remaining, but closed out the half on a 7-4 run. The Bulldogs' offense was led by Averette's 13 points as she went 5-of-7 from the floor, including three made 3-pointers. Johnson paced the way for the Lions scoring eight.
The third quarter saw the Lions offense go dry, going 2-of-11 from the field. They did, however, knock down all seven free throws. Mariah Johnson had both baskets for the Lions and hit her lone free throw attempt. The Bulldogs went on a 6-3 run in the first three minutes of the quarter. Each team would exchange free throws before the Bulldogs closed out the quarter on a 10-4 run to carry a 30 point lead into the final 10 minutes. Wingate spread out the scoring with three players scoring four points each. Danasia Witherspoon, in five minutes of third quarter action, had four points, three rebounds and two steals.
Trailing 67-37, Mars Hill was doubled-up 24-12, falling by a score of 91-49. Mariah Johnson led all players with seven points in the quarter, followed by Wingate's Teliyah Jeter's six.
Averette finished the game with 16 points, 12 of which came from beyond the arc. Three other Bulldogs finished with double-figures, including Witherspoon (12), Marta Miscenko (10) and Zasha Barrett (10). Miscenko also collected a game-high eight rebounds.
The Bulldogs shot 45 percent from long distance (9-20) compared to the Lions' 30.4 (7-23). Mars Hill hit 90.9 percent (10-11) of their shots from the free throw stripe versus Wingate's 60 percent (12-20).
The Lions head to Warren Wilson on Tuesday, December 5 to take on the Owls. Tip-off is slated for a 6 p.m. start.