MARS HILL, N.C. – The Mars Hill women's basketball team (1-15) fell to Converse (7-10) in non-conference play Monday evening inside Stanford Arena by a score of 74-54.
After giving up the first basket of the game, the Lions reeled off a 7-0 and would maintain the lead until the 4:15 mark where a Dominique Hill three-pointer gave Converse the 8-7 lead. The teams traded the lead up until the 6:57 mark where a Fajhenee Bradford three-pointer tied the game at 14 and allow the Lions to close out the half on a 9-2 run. Tatum Boggs, playing all 10 minutes of the first quarter, led the Lions with six points, hitting both three-point attempts. Converse's Ellen Nardella matched Boggs' output with two three-pointers of her own to lead the Valkyries.
The Lions 18-16 lead was quickly erased by Converse in the second quarter as the Valkyries outscored Mars Hill 13-5 in the frame, including an early 6-0 run. Following two Boggs' free throws, Converse strung together another 8-0 run. Abigail Lewis scored six of the Valkyries' points to lead all players in the half. Mariah Johnson's buzzer-beating three-pointer narrowed the deficit to seven for the Lions as they entered the half down 30-23.
Lewis led all players with 11 points in the half and pulled down nine rebounds. Boggs led the Lions with eight points while Shayla Smith pulled down a team-high five rebounds.
The third quarter saw each team score 14 points. The Valkyries, with 4:25 left in the frame, led Mars Hill by a score of 40-27 until a 9-1 Lions' run cut the margin to five points. Nardella, after Bradford's two made free throws regained the eight-point lead for the Valkyries. Bradford, with 10 seconds to go in the quarter, hit 1-of-2 free throw opportunities to enter the final frame trailing by seven. Converse was led by Nigeria Davis' eight points and four rebounds in the quarter, giving her 14 points and 10 rebounds at the end of three quarters. Johnson scored four points in the frame for the Lions.
Davis once again proved to be an offensive threat for Converse, scoring 11 of her game-high 25 points in the final frame as the Lions were outscored 30-17. Alexis Pardue scored nine of Mars Hill's 17 fourth quarter points and ended the game tied with Boggs for the team lead in points scored, each with 14 apiece. Lewis ended the contest for Converse with 19 points and 14 rebounds.
The Lions travel to Hartsville, South Carolina to take on Coker in a return to South Atlantic Conference action on Saturday, February 2nd. Tipoff is scheduled for 2 p.m.