HPU WBB’s Robertson, Panthers Muscle Past Runnin¹ Bulldogs 74-58

• Redshirt-senior Stacia Robertson recorded her 13th double-double of the season with 23 points and 11 rebounds.
• Senior Ashante Richard added 10 points, a season high, plus four rebounds, four assists and three steals.
• Senior day is up next for the Panthers as they host Radford on Saturday at 4 p.m. in the Millis Center.

HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University women’s basketball team got 23 points and 11 rebounds from redshirt-senior Stacia Robertson and earned a 74-58 victory over Gardner-Webb in Porter Arena on Tuesday.

The Panthers (17-11, 13-6) and the Runnin’ Bulldogs (13-16, 9-11) were called for a combined 51 fouls and attempted 67 free throws on the night. However, the Purple & White were more physical inside, winning the rebounding battle (49-48) and tallied a 40-20 advantage in points in the paint to grab the win.

“We hammered rebounding into our kids’ minds so I’m proud of them tonight,” head coach DeUnna Hendrix said of her team’s performance on the boards. “We had some different lineups in there that made us smaller, so it’s a credit to our effort. I’m really proud of our heart.”

Robertson earned her 13th double-double of the season while adding four steals, three blocks and three assists. Senior Ashante Richard had her best scoring outing of the year with 10 points to go with four rebounds, four assists and three steals.

“Stacia continues to amaze me,” Hendrix said. “Ashante Richard was huge for us tonight. She has the energy and ability to push the tempo and as she goes, we go.”

The senior class continued to lead HPU as redshirt-senior Lindsay Puckett tallied eight points and eight rebounds before fouling out. Despite playing only 13 minutes due to foul trouble, senior Latrice Phelps earned seven points.

Sophomore DeAnneisha Jackson came off the bench and chipped in with 14 points, eight rebounds and two blocks. Sophomore Kaylah Keys added six points and six rebounds.

The Purple & White went 23-of-28 (82 percent) while GWU hit 24-of-39 (62 percent) on their trips to the line. HPU connected on 25-of-62 (40 percent) from the floor and held the Runnin’ Bulldogs to a paltry 16-of-64 (25 percent) overall shooting percentage and 2-of-15 (13 percent) from beyond the arc.

The Panthers got off to a fast start on both ends of the floor as they jumped out to a 10-2 lead behind six points from Robertson (16:30). The HPU defense held GWU without a basket and forced three turnovers in the first five minutes.

Jessica Hellig scored the Runnin’ Bulldogs first basket with a layup at the 14:48 mark to make it 10-4. The home team got on an 8-2 run to pull within two points at 12-10 with 12:56 to play.

Mayhana Dunovant appeared to be heading in to tie the score, but had the ball stripped by Keys. The steal allowed Richard to race down the floor and hit a jumper to make it 14-10 (12:19).

Neither team was able to make any headway until Robertson got consecutive baskets after recording a block and a steal on the defensive end. (20-13, 9:19). The lead swelled to nine points (25-16) as Puckett drilled a triple and Jackson hit a layup with 7:14 until the break.

GWU’s Olivia Parker split a trip to the line to make it 26-16 with 6:25 remaining in the half. Sophomore Teddy Vincent, then, hit a reverse scoop shot to extend HPU’s advantage to 10 points at 27-17 with 6:15 in the half. The Purple & White couldn’t stretch the lead any farther as the Runnin’ Bulldogs cut the lead to six points (29-23) as the teams headed to the half.

Richard and Robertson got the HPU offense going in the second half scoring six points in the opening 3:20 (35-27). After Puckett hit a jumper, Robertson got a steal and raced down the floor to give the Panthers a 12-point advantage at 39-27 with 16:03 to play.

The Runnin’ Bulldogs hit the offensive glass hard and kept within striking distance with a 6-2 run over the next 3-plus minutes (41-33, 12:49). Keys, then, hit a pair of free throws and Phelps split her trip to the line to give the Panthers an 11-point lead at 44-33 (12:32).

Robertson grabbed another steal and found Richard in transition for a layup as HPU’s lead grew to 13 points at 46-33 with 12:14 remaining. Dunovant hit a free throw, but Phelps got a put back to make it a 14-point game (48-34, 11:31).

Solid shooting from the charity stripe allowed GWU to cut the lead to eight points at 48-40 with 9:29 in the contest. Sophomore DeAnneisha Jackson got a rebound and a bucket before Vincent hit two technical free throws to up the Panthers’ advantage back to a dozen (52-40, 9:02).

The HPU defense held the Runnin’ Bulldogs without a basket for an eight minute stretch that allowed the team to take a 15-point lead (58-43) when Puckett made a fast-break layup with 6:23 on the clock.

Richard hit a couple of free throws and Keys found Robertson for a 3-point play in transition as the squad upped its lead to 18 points at 63-45 with six minutes left. Jackson made it a 20-point lead with a second-chance bucket at the 4:40 mark (65-45).

From there the Panthers were able to close out the whistle-filled contest and earn a 74-58 triumph.

The Panthers will wrap up the regular season on Saturday when they host Radford in the Millis Center at 4 p.m.. The team will honor seniors Ashante Richard, Katie Vincent, Latrice Phelps, Lindsay Puckett and Stacia Robertson prior to the contest.