High Point Women’s Basketball Falls in Defensive Battle

Site: Washington, D.C. (Bender Arena)
Score: American 56, High Point 48
Records: AU: 2-1, HPU: 1-3
Next HPU Event: Wednesday, Nov. 20 — at Norfolk State (Norfolk, Va.), 6 p.m.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Neither team shot above 32% in a defensive battle that saw American University get the better of the High Point University women’s basketball team, 56-48 on Monday evening (Nov. 18). Foul trouble hurt the Panthers, committing a season-high 26 fouls in the game, with two Panthers fouling out.

“There were stretches tonight that we looked like a really good defensive team,” head coach Chelsea Banbury said. “Now we have to continue that without putting a team on the free-throw line as much as we did. American is a good team and they played hard and executed well down the stretch.”

Neither team could get much going in the first quarter, with both teams only making two shots from the floor. The difference proved to be free throws, with American making eight of them in the opening quarter to High Point’s three to take a 12-8 lead into the first break. The Panthers were whistled for nine fouls in the opening quarter, with three players picking up two.

High Point’s offense came alive in the second quarter, scoring 14 points to lead by one, 22-21 after the first 20 minutes. Senior Camryn Brown hit two triples in the second to add to the one she made in the first to lead the team with nine at the half. She would finish the game with nine points and lead the team with eight rebounds. Skyler Curran and Callie Scheier also joined in from behind the arc in the second, each recording one triple.

Fouls continued to pile up for the Panthers in the quarter, with HPU finishing the half with two players committing three fouls and three more with two to their names.

The Panthers’ defense stayed just as stingy as it was in the first, holding the Eagles to just two makes from the floor again, shooting 15.4% in the quarter. High Point held American to shooting just 19.0% from the floor in the first half and 0-9 from deep.

HPU extended the lead by two in the third quarter, leading 36-33 heading into the final quarter. Curran hit two more from behind the arc to give her the team lead with 11. Scheier and redshirt sophomore Zaria Wright each connected from three-point land as well, with Wright hitting on one possession and then dishing it out to Scheier on the next.

In shades of High Point’s game against the College of Charleston, foul trouble brought the downfall of the Panthers once again, with American coming back in the fourth quarter to win, 56-48. HPU finished with 26 fouls called against them to American’s 14, with the Eagles shooting 28-39 from the line while the Purple and White went 4-10. Two Panthers fouled out late in the game, with freshman Amaria McNear picking up her fifth with 2:37 showing on the clock and Wright collecting her fifth with 15 seconds left showing.

Curran connected on another three for her fourth of the game to finish the game with a team-high 16 points. Wright joined her in double digits, scoring 13 points before picking up her fifth foul, adding another three in the final quarter as well.

High Point stays on the road this week, traveling to Norfolk, Va. for a 6 p.m. matchup with Norfolk State. The Panthers are 3-2 against the Spartans and have beaten them each of the last two seasons. HPU returns home on Dec. 2 when Davidson comes to town.