02/08/11 — Trojan women best Falcons in OT

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Trojan women best Falcons in OT

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on February 8, 2011 1:47 PM

MOUNT OLIVE -- Mount Olive just couldn't put Conference Carolinas nemesis Pfeiffer University away Monday evening.

Until the seniors stepped up in overtime.

Jasmine Whitby and Brittany Miller combined for 10 points, and the Trojans profited from a critical technical foul in a 76-69 victory inside Kornegay Arena. Whitby poured in a game-high 30 points for Mount Olive, which beat Pfeiffer for the seventh time in its last eight tries in Conference Carolinas play.

Freshman Jasmine McDonald just missed a double-double with eight points and a career-high 15 rebounds. Alyssa Luebs contributed 14 points and seven rebounds, while Laporsha Davis chipped in 10 points.

"It was a battle, we had to fight from beginning to end," said Whitby.

There were eight ties and one lead change in the game.

Mount Olive seized its biggest advantage, 38-23, early in the second half. Davis drilled a 3-pointer and Andrea Jones sank two free throws.

Pfeiffer answered with a 21-6 run, sparked by 3-pointers from Celeste Caudill and Shelley Reese, whose outside bomb tied the game at 44-44. Caudill finished with 27 points, including 18 from 3-point range.

The Falcons hit 10 3-pointers on the night.

"Our defense, we got confused a little bit," said Whitby. "Number 22 (Caudill) just made some tough, contested shots. There was nothing we could about it, so we just kept going after it and ended up getting out of the slump."

The Trojans held a 60-57 lead with 1:37 to go in regulation. After a series of timeouts and missed field goals, Caudill threw up a prayer and drew the foul on the 3-point attempt.

The sophomore guard hit all three shots to forge a 62-62 tie.

"It was a costly foul," said MOC head coach Wendy Lee. "I couldn't see it and I thought there were plenty of questionable calls tonight. The good thing was we were able to weather that, too."

Whitby's layup off Miller's assist put MOC in front, 64-62. The Falcons answered again when Miller fouled Vontenea Williams, who drained both free throws to force the extra session.

In overtime, McDonald's offensive putback off her own miss kept the Trojans in front 66-63. Caudill's sixth 3-pointer tied the game again, 66-66, with 2:09 to go.

Two possessions later, Pfeiffer head coach Jill Thomas drew a technical foul for unsportsmanlike conduct after arguing that one of her players were fouled after they lost their footing on a long rebound. Thomas used another expletive as the referee turned and walked to the Trojans' end of the court.

Whitby hit both free throws and the Falcons never threatened again.

"It was a good game for us to be able to get mentally tough and not crumble when they hit some big shots," said Lee. "We just continued to play through their push and weathered the storm. I'm proud of the group."