CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. --- Sophomore Taylor Hall (New Tazewell, Tenn.) and senior Whitney Hood (Meridian, Miss.) combined for 36 points to lead the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga to a 67-52 win over Georgia Southern at the McKenzie Arena Monday night in Southern Conference women's basketball action.
Chattanooga is now 18-7 overall and 13-3 in league play while the Eagles fall to 7-18 on the year and 3-13 in the SoCon.
Hall, with her fifth double-double of the year, poured in a career-high 19 points and matched her career-best for rebounds with 15. She was 7-of-14 from the field and had a pair of 3-pointers while pulling in five offensive boards. Hood was 7-of-16 from the floor and scored 17 points, knocking down her first 3-pointer at Chattanooga, second of her career.
After the two teams traded baskets with four lead changes to start the game, Hall sparked a 10-2 run with a short jumper from the right on an assist from Hood with 17:36 to play in the first. She capped off the scoring drive with the first of her two 3-pointers three-and-a-half minutes later to make it 14-7.
After Hood's 3-pointer, a fastbreak layup from freshman Ka'Vonne Towns (Lilburn, Ga.) gave the Lady Mocs a 22-12 lead with 9:40 to play until the half. However, Georgia Southern's Claire Knight dropped in a 3-pointer and back-to-back layups off offensive rebounds by Aishya Wofford cut that lead to 22-19 less than two minutes later.
Chattanooga battled back and held the Eagles scoreless over the final 5:13 of the first half and led 35-22 at the break.
The Lady Mocs opened the second half with a 15-4 scoring advantage to take a 50-26 lead midway through the stanza. The Eagles could not be held off as they went on a 22-7 scoring run to cut Chattanooga's lead back to single digits at 57-48 with 3:38 to play. UTC went on to outscore Georgia Southern 8-5 over the final minutes for the 13 point win.
Chattanooga and Georgia Southern were nearly evenly matched in the paint with UTC edging the Eagles 28-26. The Lady Mocs outrebounded GSU 42-15, but the Eagles made better work of their offensive rebounds outdueling Chattanooga 14-11 on second chance points. UTC had just nine turnovers, one more than the season-low, and scored 12 points off 12 Georgia Southern miscues. The Eagles bench was productive with 22 points to Chattanooga's 13.
Junior Kayla Christopher (Oliver Springs, Tenn.) went 2-of-5 from the 3-point line and tied Jan Cameron (1991-94) for fifth on Chattanooga's all-time list with 161. Hood has topped the 900-point mark at Chattanooga with 908 points in just two years with the Lady Mocs.
UTC will travel to Cullowhee, N.C., this weekend to take on Western Carolina at the Ramsey Center, Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. Larry Ward, the "Voice of the Lady Mocs" will have the call live on ESPN 105.1 FM "The Zone". Live stats will be available at GoMocs.com.