UTC Women Fall to Second Ranked Notre Dame 79-58
(gomocs.com) CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga women’s basketball team closed out its home non-conference slate Tuesday with a 79-58 loss to second-ranked Notre Dame at the McKenzie Arena in front of 3,388 fans. The Mocs are 5-8 overall and the Irish improve to 12-1 on the year.
Senior Queen Alford led the Mocs with a season-high 24 points and had a team-best seven rebounds on the night. She was 9-of-17 from the field and one of three UTC players with a trio of 3-pointers.
Freshman Lakelyn Bouldin was the only other UTC player in double figures with 11 points, making 3-of-5 from beyond the arc and senior Chelsey Shumpert had three from long range for nine points in the game and three assists.
The Irish jumped out to a quick 10-0 start and were 11-of-18 from the field in the first quarter to lead the Mocs 26-12 after 10 minutes.
“We went out there timid and had veteran players go out there and do silly things,” Chattanooga head coach Jim Foster said of his team’s slow start. “We know how to play hard in the second, third and fourth quarters. We’ve done it at Louisville, we’ve done it here, we’ve done it with Connecticut. We’ve done it with very good teams. We have to start games better and understand what that means.”
The second frame saw the Mocs play the Irish point-for-point making 50 percent of their shots (7-of-14) from the field. Chattanooga saw scoring from four different players at the start of the second period, cutting the Irish lead to nine points, 30-21, with 5:25 to play in the stanza on a layup from senior Sydney Vanlandingham. Notre Dame edged UTC 18-17 in the quarter and led 44-29 at intermission.
With senior Jasmine Joyner getting in to early foul trouble, the Mocs had to rely on the bench to cover her position.
“That position was hurting us,” Foster said. “We ran a bunch of players and finally we put a guard on Brianna Turner and she did the best job because she got down low, pushed her out and competed with her before she got position.”
Chattanooga made it a much closer game in the final half making it a 35-29 game over the last two periods. UTC was 11-of-27 in the second half and made five 3-pointers. The Mocs struggled from the free throw line making just 3-of-10, its poorest effort this season.
Notre Dame’s Lindsay Allen recorded a triple-double with 11 points, 11 rebounds and 12 assists. Brianna Turner had a team-high 24 points, making 10-of-13 from the field and added six blocked shots. Arike Ogunbowale added 13 points while Kathryn Westbeld had 11 points, eight rebounds and four assists.
The Irish outscored UTC 54-22 in the paint while the Mocs converted 13 ND miscues into 20 points compared to Notre Dame’s 16 points off 10 UTC turnovers. The Irish had 18 second chance points on 14 offensive rebounds and outdueled the Mocs 46-24 on the boards. Their bench edged the Mocs 18-12.
Chattanooga will begin a three-game road trip this week, wrapping up non-conference play at Presbyterian Friday afternoon with a 2 p.m. tip in Clinton, S.C. Next week the Mocs will open Southern Conference action at Samford on Jan. 4 and Mercer January 7.