Lees-McRae sophomore Alyssa Munson tallied her fifth 20-point game on the season, but LMC struggled in the first half and fell 70-55 to Limestone in Conference Carolinas action Monday evening at Williams Gymnasium in Banner Elk, N.C.



The Saints (14-5, 9-2 CC) defense suffocated LMC in the first half by allowing only five field goals while Jasmine Kearse knocked down seven three-pointers in part of a 23-point outburst. The Bobcats (9-11, 6-5 CC) lost at home for the first time this season and only saw four players score a bucket.


LC distanced itself early with a 22-9 run in the first 9:43 of the game.


Kearse nailed a pair of treys while a Celestra Warren layup jump started the Saint offense.


Senior Lauren Lewis (Concord, N.C.) drained a pair from the charity stripe to cut the deficit to nine, 24-13, with 5:11 remaining in the first half.


Kearse hit consecutive threes to push the lead to 15, but Munson (Summerfield, N.C.) bucket kept the Bobcats close while they trailed by 11 with 1:01 on the clock.


Ayshia McNeil hit a triple at the buzzer to give LC a 17-point advantage at the half.


The Saints hit eight of their first 10 shots while LMC went 5-for-19 from the floor in the half.


The Bobcats saw the deficit balloon to 21 following a McNeil layup.


However, LMC responded with an 18-7 run capped off by an Icey Patterson (Seneca, S.C.) three after Lewis scored four straight points.


The Saints offense would tally another pair of three-pointers and efficient free-throw shooting to push the lead back to 15, 68-53.


Munson capped off her impressive evening with a layup at the 1:16 mark, but the Bobcat offense was unable to muster any points for the remainder of the game.


Kearse led all scorers while McNeil finished with 17 points. Warren led the team with eight rebounds while the Saints went 12-for-25 in each half.


Munson racked up 20 points while Lewis had 17. Kerri Belcher (Roanoke, Va.) paced the Bobcats with six rebounds while LMC shot 34.1% on the game.


The Bobcats look to return to their winning ways when they host Converse Thursday at 5:30 p.m. in Williams Gymnasium.



LMC Tripped Up by Limestone, 95-84



Lees-McRae junior Raul Tutton exploded for a season-high 20 points while leading a quartet of players in double figures, but LMC fell in a shootout against Limestone, 95-84, Monday evening in Conference Carolinas at Williams Gymnasium in Banner Elk, N.C.



The Saints (14-6, 6-4 CC) shot an eye-popping 75% in the second half while three players scored at least 20 points. The Bobcats (6-14, 1-9 CC) fared well in the second half by shooting 50% while Darius Smith(Woodbridge, Va.) enjoyed a 19-point performance.


Both teams scored early and often, but a three from Tutton (Memphis, Tenn.) gave LMC an early four-point lead, 16-12.


LC's Josh Odem drained a three to cap off an 11-3 run at the 8:31 mark.


Neither team could create much breathing room until Jamal McNeill scored on a layup to give the visitors a five-point lead, 37-32.


Mike Chambers (Winston-Salem, N.C.) and Josh Gaither (Statesville, N.C.) connected on a pair of free-throws each to tie the game for the fifth time of the first half, 39-39.


Rashod Chavis hit a jumper at the buzzer to give LC the lead at intermission, 43-41.


Both squads hit six three-pointers in the first 20 minutes.


The Saints would use a 10-2 run following an and-one from Shaq Dance to take an 11-point lead, 74-63.


LMC would trail by as many as 14 after a Dance layup with 2:11 remaining in regulation.


Junior Jacquise Moore (Concord, N.C.) would slash his way to the basket for a layup and Gaither would force a turnover in an attempt to cut the deficit.


However, Odem would grab a defensive board following a missed three to seal the win.


Odem led all scorers with 24 points while Jamal McNeill had 23 and PJ Foster with 20.


LC shot 57.9% from the floor and hit 13 3's on the evening.


Tutton paced the Bobcats while Moore had 17 and Chambers finished with 12 and a team-high seven rebounds.


LMC returns to action Thursday evening at 7:30 for a nonconference tilt against Warren Wilson in Williams Gymnasium.



Photo Courtesy: Raul Tutton, LMC Athletics