ANNAPOLIS, Md. – The High Point University women’s basketball team beat Monmouth, 81-74, in the first game of the Navy Classic at Alumni Hall in Annapolis, Md. on Friday. Redshirt-sophomore Lindsay Puckett led the team with a career-high 21 points. Redshirt-sophomore Stacia Robertson scored 17 points and had 10 rebounds.
“This was a good win because we got contributions from everyone,” said head coach DeUnna Hendrix. “Lindsay Puckett and Stacia Robertson stepped up when we needed them too. Monmouth really came out tough in the second half and made a run at us. We didn’t quit and we responded with our own run and I am really proud of that.”
High Point led by seven at the half but the Hawks opened the second half with a 15-4 run to take the lead 43-39. The Panthers answered back with a 15-1 run to open up a 10-point lead, 54-44. The Panthers held off another run by Monmouth at the end of the game to win 81-74.
Puckett led HPU with a career-high 21 points while grabbing four rebounds and two steals. She has scored double-digit points in the last three games. Robertson posted the first double-double of her HPU career with 17 points and 10 rebounds. She also had two blocks and two steals. Junior Tayler Tremblay added 13 points and tied her season-high with eight assists. Freshman Tori Cook contributed 10 points.
Chevannah Paalvast led all scorers with 22 points for the Hawks. Alysha Womack scored 19 and Abigail Martin added 15 for Monmouth.
High Point established the lead early, opening the game with a 12-2 run. Betsy Gadziala started the game with a jumper for the Hawks and the Panthers responded with 12 straight points. Puckett evened the score on a jumper from Tremblay. After Robertson hit two free throws, Cook scored on back-to-back possessions to make it an 8-2 lead. Robertson scored two in a row to cap off the 10-point run.
The Panthers took their biggest lead of the game, 29-16, on a layup by freshman Tabitha Fudge with 4:35 remaining in the half. Paalvast scored the final four points of the first half for Monmouth to cut in to HPU’s lead. High Point led by seven, 35-28, at the half.
Monmouth came out hot in the second half, tying the game 37-37. Womack gave Monmouth its biggest lead of the day, 43-39, on a jump shot with 15:32 left in the game. Robertson closed the lead to two with a made basket and High Point took the lead, 44-43, on a three-pointer from Puckett. Lexi Patterson and Cook also hit three’s to propel High Point to a 10-point lead, 54-44, with 12:28 remaining in the game.
The Hawks cut HPU’s lead to four with under a minute remaining in the game. Carly Thibault and Paalvast drained back-to-back three-pointers to make High Point’s lead 77-72. Puckett scored the next four points to push the lead back to seven, 79-72. The Panthers limited Monmouth to one field goal in the final minute of the game to secure the 81-74 win.
High Point will face the winner of the Navy/East Carolina game on Saturday. If the Panthers face Navy the game will be at 6 p.m. If East Carolina beats Navy the game will be at 3:30 p.m.