HPU Women’s hoops falls 56-43 at Liberty

• Freshman Lindsey Edwards led the Panthers with 10 points and four steals on the day.
• Freshman Emma Bockrath chipped in with nine points to go with four rebounds.
• High Point has a week off before hosting Presbyterian as the first half of a double-header in the Millis Center on Saturday, Feb. 6 at 2 p.m.

LYNCHBURG, Va. – The High Point University women’s basketball team went on the road to Liberty and fell 56-43 in the Vines Center on Saturday.

The Panthers (7-13, 6-5) struggled with the size of the Flames (12-8, 9-2) as the home team posted a 34-20 advantage in paint points and a +10 margin on the boards.

“I didn’t think we came out ready and that led to their significant rebounding edge at halftime,” head coach DeUnna Hendrix said. “There’s no doubt their size affected us. There were times we drove into the lane and expected them to be there and they weren’t. We didn’t play with the confidence we needed and were passive too often.”

Freshman Lindsey Edwards paced the Purple & White with 10 points and four steals while freshman Emma Bockrath added nine points and four rebounds. On the glass, HPU was led by freshman Haleigh Hatfield with eight rebounds.

In the backcourt, junior Kaylah Keys scored seven points as freshman Kyrie’ Chandler posted five fourth-quarter points for High Point.

The Panthers’ defense caused 24 Liberty turnovers and held the home team to a 41.5 percent shooting (22-53). But they could never find their flow offensively committing 20 turnovers and shooting 29.8 percent (17-57).

Defenses dominated the first quarter as both teams only managed two points in the first four minutes. The Flames then snapped the 2-2 tie on a basket at the 5:28 mark to spark an 11-2 run to close the quarter with a 13-4 advantage.

The Panthers’ defense continued to wreak havoc causing six turnovers in the first five minutes of the second quarter. That defensive effort translated to a 9-0 run on the offensive end highlighted by a three-point play by redshirt-freshman Kennedy Currie (15-13, 3:15). However, Liberty finished the period on a 7-2 spurt to take a 22-15 edge into the locker room.

Despite five quick points from Keys, the Flames were able to extend their lead to 11 points at 31-20 with six minutes left in the third. Consecutive baskets from Edwards pulled HPU within seven points (33-26), but the home team responded with a 6-0 run to take a 39-26 lead into the final quarter.

To open the final frame, the Flames hit two three-pointers as their lead swelled to 45-26 with 7:59 to go. From there, the Panthers went on a 12-4 run with all of the points coming from freshman to make it 49-38 with five minutes to play. However, they couldn’t get any closer as Liberty cruised to a 56-43 victory.

The Purple & White have a week off before hosting Presbyterian in the Millis Center at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 6.