Senior captain Mykelli Taylor of the LaGrange College women's basketball team recorded a career-high 17 points on 5-of-9 shooting from 3-point range during a 67-47 win over Pensacola Christian on Saturday evening at Mariotti Gym.
Taylor tied a career high with five 3-pointers in a single game. She also reached the accomplishment during her junior campaign in a 68-64 win over Bob Jones.
"I was really pleased with our team defense and believe that led to some good offense," said Taylor. "I worked to get open and my teammates found me for open looks at 3-pointers. I was happy my shot was falling and that I was able to help the team win."
Senior captain Sarah Evans finished with a season-high 12 points on 4-for-8 shooting from the floor and a 4-for-6 performance from the foul line, to go along with three rebounds and two blocks.
"Our intensity and focus have been impressive the last two games," said Panthers head coach Lee Buchanan. "The entire team has been working diligently and we are starting to see positive results."
The Panthers (4-1) have won four games in a row, while the Eagles fell to 3-6.
- LaGrange took an early 12-8 lead with 3:22 left in the first quarter on a layup by junior forward Adreona Bowen off an offensive rebound.
- Junior forward Megan English lobbed an exceptional over-the-top pass to junior center Nadia Montour 1:15 into the second, as Montour converted the layup and gave the hosts an 18-13 advantage.
- Junior forward Charley Amissah-Reyes recorded a steal by deflecting a Pensacola Christian pass to junior guard Jahpera McEachin just over three minutes into the second period. McEachin attacked the hoop in transition, giving the Panthers a 23-16 cushion on a layup.
- Senior captain Sadie Desroches pulled down a defensive rebound with 3:42 left in the half, and then spotted Taylor in transition for a right-wing three-ball, extending LaGrange's lead to 30-18.
- McEachin leaped into the air and saved the ball from going out of bounds with just over a minute left. She then located Taylor for a wide-open 3-point shot from the right wing, giving the hosts a 37-21 advantage.
- Taylor buried two treys in the opening 2:31 of the third, with the second one giving the team a 47-25 lead.
- LaGrange opened the second half on a 14-2 run, with a mid-range jumper by McEachin giving the Panthers a 51-25 lead with 6:03 on the clock in the third.
- A mid-range jumper from the right baseline by Evans put the Panthers in front, 58-33, with 8:46 left in the fourth.
- With 3:02 remaining in the game, Desroches corralled a defensive board, and then went coast-to-coast, finishing a layup in transition for a 66-44 advantage.
- Freshman forward Breonna Glover scored three points from the foul line over the final three minutes, 12 seconds.
WHAT THEY SAID:
Panthers Head Coach Lee Buchanan: "Our defense was outstanding, and I was very excited to see how well we rebounded the basketball. It was another good team win and we got contributions from a lot of different players. Sadie was good with her energy and set the pace of the game early. Jahpera shot the ball well inside the 3-point line and Mykelli shot the ball very well behind the 3-point line. Sarah played her best game of the season, and I was happy to see her get her game going."
INSIDE THE NUMBERS:
- Montour (5 points, 7 rebounds) and Bowen (8 points, 5 rebounds) were major factors in the low-post game.
- Desroches finished with six points, five rebounds and four assists, while shooting 3-for-5 from the floor. McEachin contributed with 10 points, six boards and three assists.
- LaGrange dominated the glass, holding a 54-27 advantage, including a 16-5 lead in offensive rebounds.
- The Panthers led the points-in-the-paint category, 32-10, in addition to holding a 19-2 lead in second-chance points.
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE:
- The Panthers improved to 6-1 all time against the Eagles, as LaGrange avenged a 62-51 loss to Pensacola Christian last season.
- The Panthers won the first five meetings of the series. The two teams battled in a thriller during the 2016-17 season, with LaGrange winning, 57-54, in overtime at Mariotti.
- The rivalry goes back to the 2008-09 campaign, as the host Panthers won the first-ever meeting, 64-39.
- The Panthers will take on Berry on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. in Mariotti Gym.