Freshman Tia Keitt (Dallas, Ga.) led the Tornado in scoring with 13 points and added three steals to her mark. She is now the sixth different leading scorer in King's seven games this season. Allison Bosse (Knoxville, Tenn.) was the second-leading scorer, also in double figures, with 10 points.
King (0-7, 0-1) played neck-and-neck with Mars Hill for much of the first half but fell victim to a 14-2 run by the Lady Lions to close out the second half. The Tornado were two points down with 4:20 remaining before Taylor Deal scored four of the next six M-H points to begin the run. Keitt scored eight of her 11 points in the first half on 3-of-5 shooting from the field and converted both of her free throw attempts.
Down 39-25 at the half, Mars Hill extended their lead to 24 with 7:28 remaining, but King closed the gap back to the final margin scoring the final five points of the game. Brooke Johnson (Roan Mountain, Tenn.) and Bosse each scored six points in the second half to help keep pace with the Lions before the final horn sounded.
Mars Hill (4-4, 0-2 SAC) won the battle boards and the inside game, outrebounding the Tornado 50-35 and outscoring Kin gin the paint, 30-18. Fourteen Lady Lions offensive rebounds turned into 11 points. King shot 32.8 percent (19-for-58) and 6-for 19 (.316) against M-H in the loss.
Ansley Ricker (15) and Armeka Booker (12) led the Lady Lions in scoring. Booker also led M-H with eight rebounds.
King will meet Lady Lions again on Dec. 17 in Mars Hill, N.C. for a rematch of tonight's game. Before then, King will rebound for their second home game this Saturday, Dec. 10 against Lincoln Memorial University. Tipoff is set for 5:00 p.m. with the King men's basketball team following with a tentative tip scheduled for 7:00 p.m.