HPU WBB Panthers clamp down on Badgers in 74-58 victory.

• Junior Kat Harris connected on 11-of-14 free throw attempts to lead the Panthers with 14 points in the contest.
• Sophomore Lindsey Edwards and freshman Camryn Brown combined for 21 points off the bench in the win.
• High Point held Spring Hill to 28.6 percent shooting in the second half while outscoring the Badgers 45-25 after the break.

HIGH POINT, N.C. – The High Point University women’s basketball team used a second-half surge to down Spring Hill, 74-58, in the Millis Center on Saturday afternoon.

In front of the program’s alumni, including Spring Hill coaches Karen McConico and Amy Calhoun, the Panthers (2-7) used a 45-25 run throughout the second half to pull away for a 74-58 triumph over the Badgers (4-4).

“I’m really proud of the way our kids calmed down after the half and focused on the defensive side of the floor and bought into what we were asking them to do,” head coach DeUnna Hendrix said. “We used this 10-day break heading into this game to restart our season, but in the first half you couldn’t tell that. After halftime, we really calmed down and started playing High Point basketball, which was great to see.”

Junior Kat Harris converted 11 of her 14 trips to the line as HPU hit 30-of-34 (88 percent) from the charity stripe in the game. Harris’ lone field goal, a three-pointer early in the third, sparked the deciding run as the Charlotte, N.C. product finished with a team-high 14 points.

Joining Harris in double figures, senior Kaylah Keys racked up 10 points including five quick points out of the halftime break to give the Panthers a lead they wouldn’t relinquish. The Memphis, Tenn. native is now 13 points away from passing Shamia Brown for HPU’s Division I scoring record.

Off the bench, sophomore Lindsey Edwards – 11 points – and Camryn Brown – 10 points – each scored in double figures while combining for six rebounds.

On the boards, the Panthers posted a commanding 47-37 edge behind eight rebounds from sophomore Shea Morgan and seven from fellow sophomore Emma Bockrath.

Morgan finished the day with eight points while Bockrath tallied six points and a game-best five assists. Sophomore Haleigh Hatfield registered seven points as freshman Olivia VanSlooten (6 points) and junior Bre Davis (2 points) rounded out the scoring.

The Purple & White outshot the Badgers 37.0 percent (20-54) to 30.8 percent (20-65) thanks to a stellar defensive performance in the second half.

HPU held Spring Hill scoreless in the first two minutes as Keys and Morgan tallied baskets to give the home team a 4-0 edge. The Badgers, though, answered with a 13-5 run to take a 13-9 edge with 2:28 remaining in the quarter.

However, Hatfield capped a 9-4 with a three-pointer at the 26-second mark to give HPU an 18-17 advantage after one. But for the rest of the half, HPU only managed one field goal and nine free throws as Spring Hill took a 33-29 lead into the half.

After the teams traded baskets early Harris and Keys drilled back-to-back three-pointers to give HPU a 37-35 lead (7:29). Spring Hill immediately answered to even the score before Keys put the Panthers on top for good with an elbow jumper with 7:08 left in the frame, 39-37.

From there, the lead grew as large as 10, 49-39, as HPU took a 49-41 lead in to the final period. In the fourth, the Panthers defense continued to stifle the Badgers as they shot 28.6 percent while High Point piled up 45-second half points en route to a 74-58 victory.

The Purple & White heads to Cullowhee, N.C. on Wednesday for a 5 p.m. showdown with the Western Carolina Catamounts. After a break for Christmas, the squad will wrap up its non-conference slate against UNCG on Dec. 30 in the Millis Center.