Deans nets 18 points in home finale

BRISTOL, Tenn. - King College closed the home portion of the women's basketball season with a 72-50 win over North Greenville (S.C.) University Tuesday.

The Lady Tornado improved to 8-15 overall with a 6-5 home record this season.

Senior Ashley Deans (Greeneville, Tenn.) paced all scorers with 18 points. She finished 7-for-10 from the field with a three pointer and three free throws made. Fellow senior Jessica Tharpe (Sevierville, Tenn.) chipped in 15 points while freshman Brianna Kelly (Greeneville, Tenn.) totaled 10 points for her third double-digit scoring effort of the season.

Derika Mooney (Athens, Tenn.) might have only scored three points, but she grabbed seven rebounds with five assists and five steals.

Deans scored King's first seven points as the home team jumped out to a 7-6 lead 2:55 into the game. King built onto the lead and eventually had a 20-8 advantage with 11:57 left in the half. North Greenville battled back to get within one, 25-24, with 6:07 on the clock, but King regained control with a 10-2 run in the next five minutes. The Lady Tornado took a 41-28 lead into the halftime break.

In the second half the difference never got under 10 and King would lead by as many as 25, 61-36, with 8:43 to go. In the final moments North Greenville could only get within 18 as the Lady Tornado closed out the home portion of the season.

For the game King was 24-for-59 (40.7 percent) with six 3-pointers.  At the free throw line the Lady Tornado posted an 18-for-22 (81.8 percent) effort. North Greenville went 18-for-57 (31.6 percent) and 9-for-11 (81.8 percent) at the line. Five of North Greenville's baskets were three pointers.

The visitors barely won the rebound battle 39-38, but King forced 26 turnovers that led to 32 points. North Greenville scored eight points on King's 16 turnovers.

King did record a season high in blocks with five led by Tharpe with her two.

North Greenville, ranked No.  20 in the newest NCCAA Division I Burbridge, went to 9-12. King entered the game No. 35 in the same Burbridge rating.

Earlier in the season North Greenville won a 58-56 contest in Tigerville.

King travels to Young Harris (Ga.) College for a 2 p.m. contest Saturday. The Lady Tornado defeated Young Harris 71-55 in Bristol on Jan. 22.