WILMINGTON,NC (news release from UNCW) — UNCW pulled away from in-state rival East Carolina on the strength of a 12-1 second-half run to earn a 64-53 victory in women’s collegiate basketball action Sunday afternoon at Trask Coliseum.
Playing at home for the first time this season, the Seahawks boosted their mark to 1-3 overall as they picked their second straight victory over the Pirates, who saw their record leveled at 2-2.
Junior Ayoola Weaver led UNCW with a double-double in her first start in a Seahawk uniform, scoring 11 points and grabbing a game-high 11 rebounds. Sophomore Alisha Andrews was the Seahawks’ high scorer with 13 and junior Tawanna Lee added 12 as UNCW connected on a season-high 45.6 percent (26-of-57) of its tries from the floor and committed a season-low 15 turnovers.
Junior Shayla Hodges and freshman Dana Jones led the Pirates with nine points apiece as ECU was limited to just 39.2 percent (20-of-51) shooting and was charged with 24 turnovers. Senior Britny Edwards added eight points and a team-best seven rebounds.
Clinging to a 38-37 advantage with 12:46 remaining, a three-pointer from the right side by Andrews, one of five UNCW had on the night, sparked the game-changing run that gave the Seahawks a 50-38 advantage at the 9:43 mark.
UNCW coasted from that point on, never allowing ECU to cut the lead to single digits. A driving layup by Andrews at the 5:59 mark gave the Seahawks their largest lead of the game, 57-42.
In a tight first half that saw neither team would hold more than a four-point advantage, UNCW jumped out to a quick 7-3 lead with an Andrews’ three-pointer, only to see ECU come roaring back with a 9-1 run to take a 12-8 advantage.
The two sides would battle back and forth through the remainder of the opening frame until a deep two from Hodges with 44 seconds remaining gave the Pirates a slim 29-27 lead at halftime.
UNCW will take a nine-day break from competition before traveling to the Buckeye State to challenge Mid-American Conference foe Ohio Nov. 30 in an 11 a.m. matinee. The Pirates host Delaware State Saturday at 4 p.m. in the ECU Thanksgiving Tournament.