JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Kayla Marosites registered her 20th double-double of the season but third-seeded Carson-Newman lost an 80-77 overtime contest to sixth-seeded Lincoln Memorial Wednesday at Holt Fieldhouse in the South Atlantic Conference Tournament in a game where neither team led by more than four points.
The junior's total is the new high mark for an individual since at least 2000 passing Shari Buford's 2009-10 total of 19. Marosites finished with 11 points and 12 rebounds in a career-high 42 minutes.
The loss snaps a streak of 10-straight wins for Carson-Newman (22-7) in home quarterfinal matchups dating back to Feb. 26, 2002. The Lady Eagles are now 16-3 when hosting a quarterfinal outing. It was the first overtime game for the team in 79 games since Jan. 7, 2017, an 80-75 loss to Wingate.
"Even though they had nine offensive rebounds, it was critical offensive rebounds," Carson-Newman coach Mike Mincey said. "There was always something that allowed us to not come down and try to take a two possession lead. You have to credit them to some degree, especially in the first half, they wanted it a little more than we did. They were playing extremely hard. We just shot ourselves in the foot too many times."
In 84 games between the two programs, Wednesday was the seventh overtime affair as Lincoln Memorial (16-13) has won five including each of the last three. Overall, the game featured 16 ties and 15 lead changes.
After taking a 7-4 lead, C-N allowed LMU to score six unanswered points over a 69-second sequence to take the lead. The Lady Eagles went 4-for-18 from the field in the period but trailed 13-11 after 10 minutes.
Mincey's side found its stroke in the second stanza shooting 60 percent from the field but never held a lead with neither team scoring more than three unanswered points in the quarter. The shot clock was off with C-N in possession in the waning seconds but a steal from Sydney Newsome and a run-out layup on the right block gave the six seed a 35-33 lead at the break.
Carson-Newman scored seven of the first nine points of the second half to regain its first lead since it was 7-6 with 3:57 to go in the first frame. Once again, however, neither side could gain separation as three-point play from Rachel Griffith with 12 second to play in the period regained the lead for the 'Splitters at 54-52 going into the final 10 minutes.
The three seed went back on top less than three minutes into the fourth on a hook shot by Sydney Pearce (Johnson City, Tenn.) at 60-58. LMU scored six of the next eight to take a 64-62 lead on a jumper from Rachel Griffith. C-N never snatched the lead back but two foul shots from Briana Smith (Nashville, Tenn.) tied the score at 70 with 28 seconds to go.
Lincoln Memorial's final possession saw Lindsay Profitt dribble around the right side of the floor for 20 second before a 15-foot jumper from the right elbow was blocked by Tori Griffin (Strawberry Plains, Tenn.).
Thirteen seconds into the extra period, Smith made a jumper to give the Lady Eagles the lead. It would be their last advantage as LMU scored six of the next seven. C-N pulled within one three times but Profitt made four foul shots and Kayla Marosites missed a pair of three-pointers, one from the top of the key and one from the right wing, in the final 11 seconds to stymie the comeback bid.
"The only good thing about us is that a loss isn't going to end our season," Mincey said. "You wouldn't imagine that it would being the two seed [in the region]. Stuff like this, it stings. You aren't going to have a chance to defend you title. As we start to prepare for whoever we are going to play in the NCAA Tournament, maybe they can look back at this game and say this wasn't a lot of fun. The next time we play, it's going to be one-and-done. I think that they play hard at times but there are mental things that are happening. You can't win games in March against tough opponents when you are making those mental mistakes."
Haris Price (Gatlinburg, Tenn.) finished with the team lead in scoring at 19 points adding six rebounds and four assists going 9-for-19 from the field playing all 45 minutes.
Smith moved into the No. 10 slot on the school's scoring list with 18 points going 12-for-14 at the charity stripe making her final 10. She has 1,254 total points for her career passing Stacie Dunn (2000-04).
Emily Griffith led the 'Splitters in scoring with 22 points going 10-for-17 from the field adding five boards and three assists. Her sister, Rachel, finished with 10 points and five boards. Dasia Maxwell added 14 points and six rebounds.
Lincoln Memorial shot 56 percent from the floor in the second half and 49 percent for the game. It was the highest output against a SAC school since shooting 54 percent at Coker on Jan. 26. In the nine games since that effort, the team did not shoot better than 40 percent.
The Lady Eagles turn their sights to the NCAA Division II selection show that is slated to air on NCAA.com starting at 10 p.m. on Sunday night.
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