Dec. 30, 2012
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Four Blazers scored in double figures and UNCG committed 25 turnovers as the UAB women’s basketball team improved to 9-3 on the season with an 80-62 win Sunday afternoon at Bartow Arena.
The win marked the third time this season UAB has had four players score in double figures, while the Blazers forced 25 or more turnovers in a game for the sixth time in 12 contests on the year.
“I was upset at how we started,” UAB head coach Audra Smith said. “As a coaching staff, we really got into them at halftime, and they responded with a strong second half. We went to a lot of matchup zone and we were able to force turnovers and control the glass, which was key for us down the stretch.”
The Blazers, who improve to 5-1 at home this season, held onto a slim 35-30 halftime advantage after UNCG hit 14-of-29 from the field (48.3 percent) in the opening period.
UAB forced 13 turnovers during that time and held the lead for most of the frame despite 12 points and six rebounds from UNCG junior forward Janae’ Stevenson and being outscored 24-12 in the paint.
In a back-and-forth half, the lead changed hands four times, while UAB led by as many as seven on two separate occasions.
The Blazers claimed the five-point advantage at the break thanks to strong play from freshmen Chelsee Black, who scored six points in the period and knocked in a 3-point basket to give her team the lead with just over five minutes to go in the half.
“Chelsee continues to play well for us,” added Smith. “She comes off the bench and gives great effort when she is called on, and I think that is another key for us down the stretch this season.”
Following a tight game in the first half, UAB blew it open in the final 20 minutes, using a 15-0 run from the 15:36 to 11:25 mark to stake claim to a 58-38 advantage with just over 11 minutes to go.
Down by 20, UNCG clawed back in the game after a 3-point shot from freshman guard Lucy Mason and two baskets from fellow freshman Ebona Goins.
With the score at 60-48 and just under eight minutes to go, the Spartans failed to rally any closer as UAB held on for the 80-62 win.
UAB junior forward Ashley Grimes finished with 18 points and six rebounds, while Amber Jones and Karisma Chapman added 14 points each to go along with Black’s 12 on the day.
UNCG’s Stevenson led all scorers in the game with her 20 points and 10 rebounds – her first double-double of the season.
The Blazers look for win No. 10 when they host Chattanooga on Wednesday at Noon CT.