TIGERVILLE, S.C. - Two free throws in the final seconds were the difference as the King College women's basketball team suffered a 58-56 loss at North Greenville (S.C.) University Wednesday.
North Greenville, now at 7-9, fought back to tie things at 56 with 80 seconds to go thanks to two free throws by Karly Stache. King missed two shots before North Greenville got the rebound with 34 seconds left. Krisceda Cotton missed a jumper and Kalen Collins (Wise, Va.) collected the rebound, but she turned it over. Cotton went to the free throw line with seven seconds on the clock and sunk two free throws for the lead. It was the first time North Greenville had the lead since King got the advantage with a Derika Mooney (Athens, Tenn.) fastbreak layup with 15:57 left. Mooney's two points put the Lady Tornado in front 35-34 at that point.
After the two free throws with seconds left, King called a time out, but Lady Tornado could not get a shot off to tie or win the game.
Ashley Deans (Greeneville, Tenn.) finished with a game-high 18 points. The senior was 7-for-10 from the field including a three pointer. She almost had a perfect night at the free throw line going 3-for-4. Deans also had a game-best eight rebounds.
Mooney added 12 points and eight rebounds for King.
A three pointer by Deans put King up 51-43 with 6:46 to go in the game. The eight-point margin was the largest King enjoyed in the game.
The home team came out and took a 13-4 lead in the opening 8:27. King eventually tied things at 28 apiece with a basket from Mikki Oliver (Hampton, Tenn.) 49 seconds before halftime. However a Brooks Walz free throw with 22 seconds on the clock put North Greenville back in front by one at halftime.Cotton's two free throws gave her 10 points in the game. Stache went onto lead North Greenville with 16 points while Christina Carlis had 14.
The Lady Tornado had more field goals than North Greenville as King was 21-for-49 (42.9 percent) compared to 18-for-45 (40.0 percent). North Greenville made two more three pointers, 6-4. The home team did enjoy an advantage at the free throw line. King was 10-for-15 (66.7 percent) and North Greenville went 16-for-27 (59.3 percent).
Turnovers hindered King with 25 in the game, seven more than North Greenville. It was the most turnovers since the team committed 33 at Wingate (N.C.) University five games ago. In the previous four games the Lady Tornado averaged 17.5 turnovers per contest. In Wednesday's game North Greenville used the turnovers for 22 points. On the other side King scored 15 points off 17 turnovers.
King, with a 5-14 record, returns home for a game against Young Harris (Ga.) College Saturday at 4 p.m.