No. 2 High Point Defeats No. 7 CCU to Advance to Semifinals
HIGH POINT, N.C. - Erin Reynolds scored a game-high 24 points and the No. 2-seeded High Point Panthers held a double-digit lead for the entire second half to defeat No. 7 seed Coastal Carolina, 78-57, in the quarterfinals of the 2012 Advance Auto Parts Women's Basketball Championship, Friday, March 9 at Millis Center on the campus of High Point University. The Panthers (19-11) advance to Saturday's semifinals and will play the winner of No. 3 Winthrop/No. 6 Radford at 3:30pm on ESPN3 and SportSouth.
Reynolds finished the night with five steals and four assists. Cheyenne Parker and Taylor Tremblay both posted double-doubles for the Panthers. Parker tallied 14 points and 12 boards while Tremblay had 12 markers and 12 rebounds. Olivia Irick led Coastal with 19 points while Shatia Cole had 14. Kayla Cook finished with 11 rebounds for the Chanticleers. Parker's 12 boards gave her 369 rebounds on the season to set the Big South single-season standard.
Coastal Carolina (13-15) jumped out to an 8-1 lead in the first three minutes of the game before High Point closed the gap with back-to-back field goals to make it 8-5 at the 16:07 mark. The Panthers eventually tied it at 8-8 after Reynolds converted a steal and lay-up at 15:26.
Over the next four minutes, the teams traded baskets and leads. Coastal regained its lead at 10-8 and moved ahead 14-10 before the Panthers converted two field goals and a free throw to take a 15-14 advantage. The teams went back-and-forth until High Point used an 8-0 run the next two minutes to pull ahead 27-20 at the 7:25 mark. Reynolds scored seven-straight points to push High Point's lead to 37-24 with 4:30 remaining in the half before Angelica Henry cut the deficit to single-digits with a bucket in the paint. But High Point countered with a 10-footer off the glass from Parker and a three-pointer from Reynolds to take a 44-30 halftime lead.
Reynolds scored 19 first-half points to lead the Panthers. She also tallied four of HPU's 10 steals in the opening 20 minutes. A.J. Jordan and Cole led the Chanticleers with eight points apiece in the first half, while Cook grabbed eight rebounds. The Chants out-shot the Panthers from the field, 48.1 percent to 36.4 percent, but High Point scored 16 points off of 13 Coastal turnovers, compared to CCU's two points off turnovers.
High Point went up as much as 21 points in the second half and enjoyed a double-digit lead for the final 21:37 of the contest. The Panthers limited Coastal to 37.9 percent from the floor in the second stanza while shooting 45.5 percent themselves. High Point also recorded 14 steals, scored 24 points off turnovers and had 19 second-chance points.
High Point reaches the Big South Tournament Semifinals for the fifth-straight season and is the first No. 2 seed to advance since 2010.
High Point Head Coach Jennifer Hoover
"I'm just really excited about the energy and the intensity that we came out with. I think we came out a little tight for tournament time which wasn't surprising, we were a little excited and anxious. The pace of the two guards sitting next to me (Taylor and Erin) helped setting the pace for the transition.
Coastal Carolina Head Coach Alan LeForce
"We came out with energy and we held it for about 8-10 minutes. Played well but had to go to the bench a lot. We had five people with injuries. Played four freshman, three sophomores and three seniors. Sometimes our bench plays like freshman, sometimes they play like upperclassman. We had too many turnovers, you can't turn it over 21 times. You also can't get beat on the boards. Those two stats explain the outcome of the game."