Johnson City, Tenn. (Feb. 7, 2004) -- East Tennessee State trailed Davidson, 34-33, but exploded after halftime to defeat the Wildcats 83-54 in Southern Conference women's basketball action from Memorial Center Saturday.
With the win, ETSU head coach Karen Kemp surpassed Susan Yow as the school's all-time winningest head coach with 119 victories during her 10-year tenure in Johnson City. The win also snaps a three-game home losing streak for the Lady Bucs. ETSU (10-11) and Davidson (13-9) are now tied for third place in the SoCon with a 10-5 record and have split the season series.
ETSU committed 26 turnovers -- 18 in the first half -- but Davidson went cold from the floor, shooting 4-of-24 (16.4%) in the second frame. Meanwhile, the Lady Bucs shot 54.1 percent for the game. They attempted 19 shots from beyond the arc and made 11, which was a season-high. ETSU also controlled the glass by out-rebounding the Wildcats 44-24. Davidson led by as many as 11 points in the first half, and held a one-point advantage going into the intermission.
Kiya Verdell (Hartwell, Ga.) got things heated up after the break by nailing a 3-pointer seven seconds into the second half to give ETSU its first lead of the game, 36-34. Verdell's basket sparked a 20-5 run in which the Lady Bucs connected on 9-of-13 shots, including four from the perimeter.
ETSU's largest lead was 31 points with 2:02 remaining on a layup by freshman Brooke Wilhoit (Sevierville, Tenn.). Wilhoit led five Lady Bucs who scored in double figures with a game-high 18 points on 7-of-9 shooting. Wilhoit and Verdell each hit four three-point baskets and Verdell finished with 16 points. Tiffani Mayes (Sumter, S.C.) added 12 points and eight rebounds, while Lauren Trantham (Asheville, N.C.) tallied her 23rd career double-double with 12 points and 10 boards. B.J. Banjo (Baltimore, Md.) netted 10 points, as she eclipsed double figures scoring for the fifth time in her last six games.
Davidson is now 0-3 this season in games where no players score in double figures. The 'Cats leading scorer Katie Hamilton was held to just eight points, which led the team in scoring. Meghan Bryant and Ashley Hallsted each hit three field goals and finished with six points as did Tia Washington. Courtney Laird improved on her team-leading block total with three blocked shots on the afternoon.
East Tennessee State will play its last home game of the season on Monday, Feb. 9 versus Western Carolina. There will be a special presentation honoring this year's senior class prior to the 7 p.m. tip-off.
Davidson will remain on the road to take on conference frontrunner Chattanooga. The Lady Mocs are undefeated at home this season (10-0) and carry an unblemished 14-0 SoCon record into Monday's contest. The game is scheduled to begin at 5:15 p.m.