Ladies End Eight-Game Skid With 72-69 Win Over BSC
Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Shreveport—The Centenary Ladies ended the non-conference portion of their schedule in dramatic fashion on Tuesday night in the Gold Dome with a thrilling come-from-behind victory. The Ladies fought back from a 14-point deficit with 6:45 remaining to take the 72-69 win over Birmingham-Southern thanks to a near half-court three-pointer by Carly Melvin as time expired.

The game-winning 32-footer by Melvin was the climax to an exciting last six minutes as the Ladies outscored the Panthers 21-4 to close out the contest. With under three minutes left to play, Centenary senior Alexis Pettway missed four consecutive free throws that would have cut the Birmingham-Southern lead to one point. Instead the Ladies still trailed by five at 65-60. After a free throw by Ricka Spears to extend the BSC lead to six points, the visitors committed three straight turnovers and Centenary took advantage to knot the game at 66 apiece with 45 seconds left on the game clock.

Birmingham-Southern set up a shot for Lindsay Boyett but failed to convert and the Ladies took possession. Freshman Holli Wilkins then sank the biggest shot of her career to date when she netted a three-pointer from the corner to give Centenary its first lead since the 18:55 mark of the first half.

Just as Centenary could feel a win, Boyett nailed an off-balance, line drive desperation heave from 23 feet to tie the game again at 69-69 with 3.4 seconds remaining. After a Centenary timeout, the Ladies inbounded the ball to Pettway from underneath the opposing goal. Pettway quickly fed Melvin just across mid-court and the junior took one dribble and launched her shot, which banked off the backboard and in as the closing buzzer sounded.

Centenary (2-9) snapped an eight-game losing skid and will enter Mid-Con play on Saturday against Chicago State on a positive note. Four Ladies scored in double figures led by Julie Danieles’ 15-point performance. Pettway added 14 points in the win, but converted on just 4-of-13 free throw attempts. Melvin finished with 11 points and freshman Jelena Aleksic contributed ten points. Tori Alloway played 37 minutes at the point for the Ladies and only recorded one turnover as she organized the Centenary offense.

Birmingham-Southern (6-4) received 23 points from Louisiana native (Monroe, La.) Stacey Anthony. Ricka Spears recorded a double-double with a game-high 14 rebounds to go with her ten points. Boyett finished with 13 points while April Walker added 12 points in the losing effort.

The Ladies will host Chicago State in their Mid-Con opener on Saturday at the CenturyTel Center in Bossier City, La. Tip time is slated for 4:30 p.m. as the game is the first game of a doubleheader with the Centenary men’s basketball team. The Gents will host the LSU Tigers in the same facility at 7:05 p.m.