Mars Hill defeated by Tusculum

Mars Hill defeated by Tusculum

GREENEVILLE, Tenn. – The Mars Hill women's basketball was downed 100-39 against Tusculum on the road Wednesday evening. Mariah Johnson led the team with 14 points.

The Lions jumped out to a 9-4 lead in the first 3:58 of the contest. With 5:23 remaining in the first period, Tusculum would begin 16-0 stretch to close out the opening ten minutes, led by Sydney Wilson's nine points. The Pioneers shot 35 percent from the field compared to the Lions, who made 4-of-14 attempts from the floor.

Carrying their 16-0 run into the second period, the Pioneers added seven more points before a made jump shot by Gabby Gianikos ended the 23-0 run with 6:24 remaining in the half. The Lions trailed 29-11 with just over five minutes left in the half. Tusculum would continue to further their lead by going on a 15-2 run over the span of 2:48 to hold a 43-13 edge with just over two minutes remaining in the half. A made free throw from Gianikos began a 7-4 run for the Lions to close out the half. Jewel Walston scored four of the Lions last six points in the half.

Walston and Mariah Johnson led Mars Hill with four points each entering the half. Cierra Hampton joined Walston by collecting four rebounds apiece in the opening twenty minutes. Wilson had a game-high nine points entering the half, followed by Mia Long's eight.

Tusculum began the second half with a 47-18 advantage and remained relentless in their offensive production. Outscoring the Lions 26-11 in the third frame, the Pioneers carried a 44 point lead into the final 10 minutes. Callie Patterson, shooting 4-of-7 from the field in the period, scored 10 points for the Pioneers and added two assists. Johnson scored seven points for the Lions.

The drubbing continued in the fourth period where the Lions were outscored 27-8 in the final 10 minutes. Callie Patterson knocked down a 3-pointer with 16 seconds left in the contest to push the Pioneers into the century mark. Long exploded for 12 points to lead Tusculum in the period. Johnson and Alexus Grubbs each had three points for the Lions.

The Pioneers dominated down low, outscoring the Lions 50-12 in the paint and outrebounding Mars Hill 55-32 on the evening. Capitalizing on 24 Mars Hill turnovers, Tusculum scored 27 points compared to the Lions 7 and scored 30 of their 100 points on fast breaks.

Long and Patterson each finished with 20 points for the Pioneers while adding seven and four assists, respectively. Kasey Johnson and Yolizma Cupidan each pulled down a team-high seven rebounds.

Walston collected a game-high nine rebounds and finished the contest with six points. Sheena Johnson made her return to the Lions' lineup after missing eight of the last nine games including six straight. She chipped in with two points in 13 minutes of action.

The Lions have dropped 21 straight and fall to 1-22 (0-15 SAC) on the year. Tusculum improves to 14-6 (9-5 SAC).

Mars Hill returns to action Saturday, February 10 when they take to the road to face Lenoir-Rhyne. Tip-off is scheduled for 2 p.m.

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