MARS HILL, N.C. - The Mars Hill women's basketball team (1-19, 0-15 SAC) was defeated by the visiting Tusculum Pioneers (17-6, 9-6 SAC) by a score of 67-32 Wednesday evening inside of Stanford Arena.
The Pioneers opened the game hitting back-to-back three-pointers to go up 6-0. They extended their lead to 15-4 with just over five minutes remaining in the quarter. Yolizma Cupidan had five points in the run. The Lions remained down by 11 entering the second quarter, trailing 18-7. Tusculum opened the second frame on a 6-0 run, but the Lions responded by scoring four straight to remain within 13 points with just over 3:17 left in the half. Both teams scored four points apiece in the waning minutes of the first and Tusculum ended the half with a 28-15 lead.
Cupidan led all players with nine points in the half while collecting eight rebounds. Alexis Pardue paced the Lions' offense with seven points and, along with Tatum Boggs, led the team with five rebounds.
Following a layup by Pardue, the Lions conceded seven straight points and 21 of the next 23 to find themselves trailing 49-19 with 2:38 left in the third quarter. Callie Patterson hit three three-pointers in that run while Cupidan added six. The Lions trailed by 30 entering the final 10 minutes of play. The fourth quarter saw the Pioneers open on a 5-0 run to further their lead to 35 points. The Lions trailed by as many as 38 in the contest, but were able to score five of the last seven points to pull within 35 before the final buzzer.
Cupidan ended the contest with a game-high 15 points and nine rebounds. Both Patterson and Maddie Sutton added nine points for the Pioneers.
Pardue led the Lions with 11 points and eight rebounds, followed by Mariah Johnson's nine points and seven rebounds. Boggs finished the game with seven rebounds.
The Lions travel to Wingate on Saturday, February 16th to take on the Bulldogs. Tipoff is slated for 2 p.m.