Panthers hold off Centre to win at home, 51-46

Yorisha Bryant (photo by Jimmy Mitchell)
Yorisha Bryant (photo by Jimmy Mitchell)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—Led by senior Yorisha Bryant with 19 points and 10 rebounds, the Birmingham-Southern women's basketball team defeated Centre at home, 51-46, Friday evening in Bill Battle Coliseum.

The Panthers moved to 14-1 overall with their third straight win, and 4-1 in the Southern Athletic Association. The Colonels fell to 4-12 overall and 2-3 in the SAA.

After an early 2-2 tie, the Panthers used a 9-2 run to pull ahead 11-4, and led 11-7 at the end of the first period.

Centre battled back in the second to take a 13-12 lead at the 8:14 mark, but BSC responded with an 8-2 run to pull back ahead 20-15 before taking a 20-18 lead into the locker room at halftime.

The teams traded three-pointers to open the third quarter before the Panthers pulled out to a 31-23 lead at the 5:21 mark. BSC led 36-28 heading into the fourth, and then built the lead up to 12, 41-28, at the 7:36 mark for the Panthers' largest lead of the game.

After BSC led 43-32 at the 6-minute mark, the Colonels used a 12-2 run to cut it to 45-44 with 1:12 remaining. After a Bryant free throw with 49 seconds left, Centre missed a three-pointer and Bryant pulled down the rebound. Junior Jameice Holmes was fouled, and she made both of her free throws, putting BSC up 48-44 with 25 seconds left to play. The foul was called intentional, giving BSC the ball, and the Colonels then sent senior Ashley Curry to the line, where she was one of two to increase the lead to five. Centre's Alexis Guy made a layup on the ensuing possession, cutting it to 49-46 with 14 seconds left, and the Colonels were forced to foul again. Senior Halle Knowles sank both of her shots to expand the lead to 51-46, and Centre missed a three-pointer as time expired.

Bryant's double-double was her seventh of the season, and she has now scored in double digits in all but one game this year. She shot 8-14 from the field, and also had four blocks, three assists, and three steals. Holmes was also in double digits with 12 points, going 3-4 from beyond the arc, and Knowles led with four assists.

BSC is at home again this Sunday, hosting Sewanee at 1 p.m.