Joseph Marvin: Assistant Sports Information Director
BREVARD, N.C. - Senior guard Annalee Bollinger recorded a season-high 26 points as the Brevard College Tornados (8-9, 4-7 USAS) picked up a big USA South victory against the LaGrange Panthers (10-8, 4-5 USAS) on Saturday afternoon at the Boshamer Gymnasium.
The Tornados were able to successfully avenge a 56-55 heartbreaking overtime defeat against the Panthers back on January 4 at LaGrange, Ga.
"Back at their place we lost a very tough one-point game," said Head Coach Donald Hudson. "Tonight we were able to take care of business, knock down shots, and lock down defensively to pull out the victory. When we make shots, it helps our defense out. Our team defended at a very high-level tonight in part to our shot-making ability."
Bollinger's game-high and season-high 26-point scoring total came on 11-of-19 shooting from the field (58%), which included four 3-pointers made. Bollinger added four rebounds, three assists, and a steal to her game-leading scoring effort.
After Bollinger's performance on Saturday afternoon, her career 3-pointers made total reached 169, which is just 12 away from tying the Brevard College NCAA-era record for career 3-pointers made. The career mark was set by BC alumni Holli Flippo (2008-12), who hit 181 career 3-pointers as a Tornado.
"Annalee's performance tonight speaks volumes about her character," commented Coach Hudson on Bollinger's performance. "She had been in a slump, and she has lived in the gym ever since. Coach Hiatt and I knew that it was only a matter of time before the floodgates opened. Our team feeds off of her, and when she is on her game, it takes pressure off the rest of our girls. Her hard work showed in tonight's game."
Sophomore forward Destiny Williams was the other Tornado to reach double-digit scoring, putting up 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting, including 3-of-5 from beyond the arc. Williams has found success this season from long-range against the Panthers, as seven of her 15 3-pointers in 2018-19 have come against LaGrange.
Deja Riddick brought a high-energy performance for Brevard, recording seven points, four boards, and a team-high three steals.
Lockwood grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds while also dishing out a team-high four assists. Lockwood has now recorded double-digit rebounding performances in eight games in 2018-19.
Including Lockwood's performance on Saturday, her rebounding total for 2018-19 has reached 147, which places her top-ten (8th) in BC NCAA-era history for single-season rebounding totals. Lockwood sits 96 rebounds away from tying the BC single-season record set by Madison Lenox (2013-17), who grabbed 243 rebounds in the 2016-17 season.
Davis commanded the paint in reserve action, scoring four points while grabbing nine rebounds.
"We have a good one-two punch with them (Lockwood & Davis)," added Coach Hudson. "They genuinely want to see each other succeed. In practice, they battle every day and their hard work shows up in games."
The Panthers were led by Jahpera McEachin, who recorded a team-high 16 points on 5-of-8 shooting, which included a perfect 4-of-4 mark from the free throw line.
An early Sadie Desroches two-pointer gave LaGrange a 2-0 lead with 8:33 left in the first quarter, which proved to be the Panthers' lone lead of the afternoon. The Tornados ended the first quarter outscoring LaGrange 25-3, which included a monstrous 18-0 scoring run. BC was led by the duo of Bollinger (nine points) and Williams (seven points) in the first stanza.
The second quarter proved more of the same as the Tornados took a 41-20 lead into the halftime intermission. BC held off a solid second quarter by McEachin, who put up nine points in the period. The half was closed off with a deep buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Willams, which was assisted by Bollinger. Bollinger (11 points) and Williams (10 points) had both reached double-digits by the end of the first half, as the Tornados had outshot the Panthers 53.3% (16-of-30) to 28% (7-of-25) before the break.
Brevard once again dominated the scoring in the third quarter. Led by Bollinger's 15-point, perfect 6-of-6 shooting performance in the third stanza, the Tornados outscored LaGrange 25-11, including a game-high 39-point lead held with 2:32 left in the third period at 64-25. Brevard took a commanding 66-31 advantage into the fourth quarter.
LaGrange found momentum in the final period, however, it proved too little too late. The Panthers forced eight turnovers and swiped five steals in the final stanza, utilizing a press defense to cause disruption. However, the Tornados would prevail by a final score of 72-51, picking up their fourth USA South victory of 2018-19.
Brevard outshot LaGrange 51% to 31% from the field, alongside of 12 Tornado 3-pointers made on the afternoon. The Tornados had a healthy 43-28 rebounding advantage and showed solid ball movement by dishing out 15 assists.
The Tornados return to action on Wednesday, January 23 as they head to Lookout Mountain, Ga. for a USA South battle against Covenant College (5-13, 3-7 USAS). Tip-off is slated for 6 p.m.
"Our game has to travel," said Coach Hudson on the upcoming road trip to Covenant College. "At times we haven't played well on the road, and our team needs to play solid defense regardless if our offense is hitting shots in order to come out on top Wednesday."
After the trip to Lookout Mountain, Ga., the Tornados return to the Bosh for a conference matchup against Agnes Scott on Saturday, January 26 at 2 p.m. The Tornados have already faced the Scotties once in 2018-19, prevailing in Decatur, Ga., by a final score of 52-41 on December 8, 2018.
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