AIKEN, S.C. – Monday evening's matchup against the # 11 Lady Pacers of USC Aiken was the second time the Georgia Southwestern Lady Hurricanes faced a ranked opponent this season. The Blue & Gold previously gave defending national champions Clayton State everything they could handle in a 66-62 defeat in December. USC Aiken (15-2, 8-1 PBC) would put the clamps on the GSW offense and the game en route to their 65-42 victory of the Lady 'Canes.
Poor shooting did in the Lady Hurricanes as Coach Britsky and company shot an abysmal 21.0% from the field for the game. The 13-62 shooting was the worst performance from the field of the season for Georgia Southwestern. The Lady 'Canes were also out-rebounded 47-42, and they also conceded a 21-7 assist to turnover performance by the Lady Pacers.
Jessica Bivins would be the only GSW player to score in double figures. The senior tallied eleven points to go with her three rebounds and two assists. It was a busy night for forward Adrian Randall on the glass. The Bronx native finished the game with eight points, twelve rebounds and two blocks.
USC Aiken was led by a balance scoring attack. The home team was led by Hannah DeGraffinreed (14 points), Mia Antoine (13 points) and Kayla Harris (eleven points). The trio had eight of USCA's 21 assists, which helped the team finish the evening with a three-to-one assist-to-turnover ratio.
It was a nerve-racking initial few minutes for the Lady Hurricanes as they conceded early fast break points and a pair of three-pointers. GSW was able to keep in contact with the Lady Pacers with an early rebounding advantage, which led to eight of their first 17 points coming via the second chance variety. Adrian Randall played strong out of the gates recording four points, six rebounds and a block in nine early minutes of play.
The two-point Lady Pacer advantage would grow to as many as twelve points, which was the halftime lead for USC Aiken at 36-24. Georgia Southwestern struggled offensively shooting 25% (7-28) from the field, which included 2-7 (28.6%) from beyond the arc. On the flip side, USC Aiken shot 44.4% from the field and recorded an impressive twelve assists to five turnover performance in the game's first twenty minutes.
Jessica Bivins led GSW in scoring in the first half with eight points. The senior guard was supported by Adrian Randall's six points, six rebounds and two blocks in the first half. Aiken was led by a pair of Lady Pacers with eleven points in the first half. Kayla Harris registered eleven points, four rebounds and four assists, and her teammate Hannah DeGraffinreed scored eleven points, grabbed three rebounds and blocked three shots.
GSW would go 3:20 into the second half before getting their second field goal of the half. The pair of Jessica Jones baskets would be GSW's only made field goals over a twelve minute period of time. By the time the Lady Hurricanes scored their third field goal of the game, USC Aiken had outscored GSW 14-8 in the second half.
That run would put the game out of reach for the Lady 'Canes whose poor first-half shooting extended into the second half as well as the foul line. Coach Britsky and crew would shoot 17.6% from the field in the second half, and they would miss over half of their nine foul shots in the final half of play.
The loss puts the Georgia Southwestern record to 11-4 (3-4 PBC). The Lady Hurricanes will look to get to even their PBC record as they will host the Lady Patriots of Francis Marion on Saturday, January 28 at 1:30 p.m. in the Storm Dome.