MOU's NT BERRY, Ga. - Riley Chlupacek had a career-high 25 points to help LaGrange hold off Berry 72-64 at the USA South/SAA Classic on Saturday. The Panthers stayed unbeaten at 5-0, the second best start in the program's history.
"We really had to battle for 40 minutes tonight to beat a talented Berry team," Coach Lee Buchanan said. "Both teams played hard and we just found a way to come out on top."
Chlupacek hit 7-of-10 from 3-point range and was a perfect 4-for-4 at the free throw line. Lauren Johnson added 13 points and was 7-of-8 at the line. The Panthers were 21-of-30 shooting free throws, including 12-of-14 in the fourth quarter.
"Riley C was a big difference maker on the offensive end. She shot the ball with confidence and played a real solid game," said Buchanan. "Any player that goes 7-for-10 from behind the arc has a special night. I am really proud of Riley. She has worked very hard with the hope to be able some day have a shooting night like tonight."
Chlupacek hit three of her first four treys in the first period as the Panthers jumped out to a 20-9 lead. LC never trailed in the game and led 34-24 at haltime.
Andrea Lasseigne's free throw gave the Panthers their largest lead, 61-44, with 5:22 left in the game. The Vikings (2-2) rallied, cutting the Panthers' lead to three, 63-60, with 2:25 remaining.
The Panthers put the game away at the line. Chlupacek and Johnson were 9-of-10 in the final minutes to secure the win.
The Panthers close out the tournament Sunday against Oglethorpe.