GREENEVILLE, TN - Junior Aisjah Roan (Louisville, KY) recorded her second double-double in three games and the Lady Railsplitters nearly led wire-to-wire, as they topped the Tusculum College Pioneers 76-66 in South Atlantic Conference women's basketball action on Wednesday in Greeneville, Tennessee. Lincoln Memorial University has all but erased the memory of that five-game losing streak, capturing its third-consecutive contest to improve to 7-6 on the season and 6-3 in SAC play. Meanwhile, the Pioneers sank to 1-12 overall and 1-8 in the league with the loss.
Tusculum's Shynese Whitener scored the first bucket of the game, giving the Pioneers a 2-0 lead with a lay-up just 15 seconds into the game. However, the Lady Railsplitters countered with a 10-2 over 2:44 of game clock to run out to a 10-4 lead. Four different Lady Railsplitters scored over that flurry. LMU never trailed for the remainder of the contest, trudging out to as large as a 16-point first-half lead before settling on a 35-23 cushion at the midway point.
The Lady Railsplitters eclipsed the 70-point barrier for the third time in four games, tallying that mark on a season-high 49.2 percent shooting, going 29-for-59 from the field. Lincoln Memorial knocked down five of its 13 three-point attempts, but a 13-for-27 clip from the free-throw line took away from what was otherwise an efficient offensive performance.
Louisville, Kentucky native Aisjah Roan led the Lady Railsplitters - posting her second double-double in the three games - with 16 points on 5-of-12 shooting while adding a team-high 11 rebounds. Roan also collected a season- and game-high five assists. For the second-straight game, LMU's second unit nearly doubled the output of its opponent, as Kortnay Cox (Murfreesboro, TN) and Haley Nelson (White Pine, TN) fronted a 37-19 advantage for the Lady Railsplitter reserves with 12 and 10 points, respectively. Those were season-high point totals for both Cox and Nelson. Junior Samantha Satterlee (Junction City, KS) also trekked into double-digits, amassing 10 points on 4-for-9 shooting.
The Lady Railsplitters limited the Pioneers to just 31.6 percent shooting (25-for-79), which marks the third-lowest total for an LMU opponent during the 2013-14 campaign. During Lincoln Memorial's five-game losing skid, its opponents shot better than 45 percent from the three-point line three times. Now, the Lady Railsplitters have held four-straight opponents below 25 percent shooting from long range, as Tusculum went 2-for-10 for a 20 percent clip beyond the three-point arc.
Tusculum's Shynese Whitener led all players with 22 points on 9-of-20 shooting to go along with seven rebounds, six assists and two steals. Brianna Mitchell sparked the Pioneers' short-staffed second unit with 13 points in 28 minutes, while Blakeley Burleson chipped in with 12 points and six rebounds. Kristen McMillion poured in 10 points and collected a game-high 16 rebounds, leading the Pioneers to a 50-45 advantage on the boards. McMillion also chalked up five steals in 39 minutes of burn.
The Lady Railsplitters led by double-digits for all but two seconds in the second half. Lincoln Memorial jettisoned out to as large as 17-point lead, which Roan provided with a three-point play at the 5:26 mark. The Pioneers rallied behind a 15-7 run over a 4:53 stretch of game clock to cut the deficit to 75-66, the narrowest margin since the 8:44 mark of the first half. But, Elliotte Roberts (McDonough, GA) nailed one of her two free-throw attempts with 31 ticks left on the clock to propel LMU back to a double-digit victory.
The Pioneers committed 14 turnovers which contributed to 18 points for the Lady Railsplitters. Tusculum made up that deficit by collecting 26 offensive rebounds that were responsible for 16 second-chance points. LMU narrowly outscored the Pioneers 30-28 in the paint.
The Lady Railsplitters return to action on Saturday, January 18 with a trip to Charlotte, North Carolina to take on the Queens University Royals. That game is set to get underway at 2 p.m. as the Lady Railsplitters look to finish off the regular-season sweep of the Royals.