JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. -- Chattanooga used a 23-7 run over the last 6:49 of the first half and the first 1:38 of the second half to break open a close game and propel the Lady Mocs to a 85-54 win over the East Tennessee State Lady Bucs Saturday afternoon from Memorial Center.
The Lady Mocs led 22-21 with 6:49 remaining in the first half after two made free throws by Lady Buc senior guard Chris Forman. It was as close as ETSU had been since Chattanooga held a 9-8 lead with 5:04 elapsed in the game. However, the Lady Mocs embarked on a 16-4 run to close the half with a 38-25 lead.
The Lady Mocs shot the ball well in the first half, nailing 50 percent of their shots (15-30), compared to the Lady Bucs' 40 percent (10-25). Chattanooga forced the Lady Bucs into 16 first-half turnovers, while ETSU pressured the Lady Mocs into six steals.
Chattanooga turned up the heat in the second half, opening the stanza on a 28-11 run to establish a 66-36 lead with 9:50 remaining in the game. After being outrebounded by the Lady Bucs 17-14 in the first half, the Lady Mocs hit the boards in the second half, outrebounding ETSU 23-11.
Both teams shot well from three-point range, with the Lady Mocs shooting 47 percent (7-15) and the Lady Bucs shooting 5-10 (.500). Chattanooga forced ETSU into 28 turnovers, while committing just 18 of their own.
The Lady Bucs were led by Forman, who scored 16 points on 5-12 shooting and 4-6 from three-point range. Freshman guard Racquel Ellis also scored in double-digits with 13 points. Freshman center Jessica Lonon led the Lady Bucs with six rebounds and Forman and freshman forward Joi Anderson each added two steals.
The Lady Bucs were without leading scorer, junior guard Erin Thurman and freshman forward Lauren Trantham. Thurman may have suffered a mild concussion following an injury in practice Friday. "It hurt us with Erin (Thurman) not being on the floor," ETSU Head Coach Karen Kemp remarked following the game. "Not having her out there took a lot away from our offense." This was Thurman's first missed game since missing a game on Dec. 11, 1999 against Louisville.
Trantham missed today's game due to mononucleosis that kept her out for eight games earlier in the season. She had a relapse of her mono symptoms following Wednesday night's game against Wofford.
Chattanooga was led by Miranda Warfield, who scored a game-high 22 points on 7-11 shooting. Nneka Irons (11), Jennifer Wilson (10) and Katie Galloway (10) also scored in double-figured for the Lady Mocs. Damita Bullock and Tishay Lewis led the Lady Mocs with six rebounds each. Irons also added a game-high four steals.
The Lady Bucs return to action Monday, Feb. 5 at 7:00 p.m., as the Georgia Southern Lady Eagles travel to Johnson City to take on ETSU in Memorial Center. The Lady Mocs now travel to College of Charleston to face the Cougars Monday night at 7:00 p.m.