The Lees-McRae women's basketball team put on an offensive show case while placing six players in double figures and led by as many as 51 in a 93-46 Conference Carolinas victory against Converse, Thursday evening at Williams Gymnasium in Banner Elk, N.C.



The Bobcats (10-11, 7-5 CC) shot an eye-popping and season-high 57.6% on the evening and picked up their largest victory since a 59-point blowout of St. Andrews (Feb. 11, 2012). The Valkyries (1-19, 1-11 CC) struggled from the floor while going 3-for-16 from long range.


LMC ran out a 19-5 lead in the first eight minutes of the game following a Natalija Cakarevic (Belgrade, Serbia) layup.


The Bobcats continued to extend the lead thanks to a 22-8 run following a triple from Lauren Lewis (Concord, N.C.)


Lewis followed up with a jumper to give LMC a 43-15 lead at the 2:48 mark.


The Bobcats shot 51.6% in the first 20 minutes while the defense held strong allowing CC to knock down only 32% of its shots.


Kabrina Truesdale (Wilmington, N.C.) and Kerri Belcher (Roanoke, Va.) chipped in on the scoring parade with buckets in the first four minutes while LMC pushed the lead to 33.


Icey Patterson (Seneca, S.C.) chipped in with four consecutive points before a Tayler Collins (Fayetteville, N.C.) jumper made it a 76-32 contest.


LMC saw its lead reach its highest peak after a pair of buckets from Kasey Haynes (Mooresville, N.C.) at the 2:50 mark.


The Bobcats shot 64.3% from the field in the second half and scored 35 points off of turnovers in the game.


Lewis paced both squads with 19 points while Truesdale had 15 and a team-high six boards. Collins and Cakarevic enjoyed season-highs in points with 12 and 11, respectively.


Belcher and Layana De Souza (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) chipped in with 10 points each.


Margo Dill paced Converse with 12 points while the Valkyries turned the ball over 28 times.


The Bobcats begin a three-game road swing with a date at Erskine in Due West, S.C. Saturday at 2 p.m. LMC won a 75-74 nailbiter against the Flying Fleet Jan. 8.



Late Bucket Buries Bobcats, 71-69



Lees-McRae senior Darius Smith and freshman Chad Hicks recorded double figures, but Warren Wilson's Ty Johnson hit a jumper with 1.3 seconds remaining to down LMC, 71-69, in nonconference action Thursday evening at Williams Gymnasium in Banner Elk, N.C.


The Owls (15-10) used a double-double from Rashad Ali (21 points, 14 rebounds) to extend their win streak to six games. The Bobcats (6-15) saw 10 different players register at least two points, but struggled from long range (2-of-14).


The game remained close as an Avery Wallis (Wilkesboro, N.C.) jumper forced the sixth tie of the first half at 22.


Ali responded with a triple to give the Owls a slim three-point advantage, 28-25.


Freshman Mike Chambers (Winston-Salem, N.C.) capped off a 7-1 run with a three at the 2:27 mark of the first half and gave LMC a 32-29 lead.


Neither team would score the rest of the half while the first 20 minutes saw nine ties.


LMC shot 41.4% from the floor while both teams attempted 10 free throws.


The second half was a duplicate of the opening period while the teams exchanged buckets for the first six minutes.


Smith (Woodbridge, Va.) scored seven consecutive points to extend the Bobcat lead to three, 41-38.


LMC's offense would go cold while not scoring a field goal for over five minutes. Freshman Josh Gaither (Statesville, N.C.) snapped the drought with a layup at the 7:22 mark.


Hicks (Winston-Salem, N.C.) and junior Jacquise Moore (Concord, N.C.) got in the mix while the Bobcats clung to a 65-62 lead.


Gaither connected on another layup to push the lead to five.


The Owls would respond while Justin Gonyea connected on a three before Ali scored four consecutive points to give WWC a 69-67 lead.


Smith was fouled and drained two free-throws with 32 ticks left on the clock to tie the game for the 18th time.


Johnson provided the heroics for Warren Wilson as he connected on the game-winner with 1.3 remaining.


Ali led all scorers while Tyler Triplett chipped in with 14 points.


The Bobcats were led by Smith (18) and Hicks (13) while LMC forced 19 turnovers, including 10 steals. Despite the loss, LMC connected on nine more free throws in the second half (17-8).


Coach Steve Hardin's squad returns to action Saturday with at trip to Due West, S.C. to battle Erskine at 4 p.m.



Photo Courtesy: Lauren Lewis, LMC Athletics