Both the Bears and the Bulldogs shot over fifty percent from the floor in the first half in a to-and-fro game, but it was stifling defense as the Lenoir-Rhyne Women's Basketball Team forced two-straight turnovers and held Wingate to nine points in the fourth quarter en route to the 66-62 victory in South Atlantic Conference action on Wednesday night.
The Bears were led by freshman Madeline Hardy who was a perfect 10-for-10 from the field, putting in a career-high 23 points in the Bears' home upset. Junior Karlie Bearden was the only other Bear in double-figures with 10 to go along with two rebounds, two assists, but most importantly three steals, and a block, which arguably may have been the game-winner with a little less than 10 seconds on the clock.
There were 12 lead changes and three ties in this back-and-forth battle in Shuford Gymnasium.
Lenoir-Rhyne put in 47.1 percent of the shots they made (24-of-51) while the Bulldogs were limited to 43.1 percent (22-of-51) from the floor.
Wingate had three score in double-figures, with Jordan Quick leading the way scoring 13, Jo Snow with 12, and Caroline Averette with 11.
The Bears defense was stingy, limiting their top three scorers on the season to below their scoring average.
Lenoir-Rhyne improved its home record to 5-6 after beating the Bulldogs, who held the No. 2 spot in the SAC standings heading into the game.
LR managed to take two of the top-ranked teams in the conference to the final minutes in Anderson and Wingate in the past two games, and have come out with a 1-1 record between them.
Post play has improved in the last few games as Hardy and Bearden combined for 33 points tonight and Bearden has scored in double digits in two straight games, giving her four games scoring in double figures in the 2018-19 campaign.
The Bears improve to 12-11 overall and 7-8 in the South Atlantic Conference. L-R will hit the road and travel to Greeneville, Tenn. to take on Tusculum University on Saturday, Feb. 16 at 2 p.m.