SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The Presbyterian College women’s basketball team overcame a slow start offensively and came back to beat USC Upstate 60-50 in the opener of the two teams’ Big South Conference weekend series on Saturday evening. Trinity Johnson paced the Blue Hose with a season-high 18 points, while Tionna Carter added 16 for PC.
FINAL SCORE: Presbyterian 60, USC Upstate 50
LOCATION: G.B. Hodge Center (Spartanburg, S.C.)
RECORDS: Presbyterian (5-4, 4-3) | USC Upstate (3-9, 1-6)
Scoring the Game
After Upstate opened the scoring with a three-pointer, Presbyterian answered with the next five to take its first lead, 5-3, at the 5:51 mark of the first quarter. The two teams traded the advantage a few times over the remainder of the period, and the Spartans were on top 11-9 after one.
PC began the second quarter with an 8-2 spurt to jump in front 17-13 with 5:38 remaining, the largest margin for either side in the opening half. The Spartans netted the final six points of the period and were on top 19-17 at halftime.
Johnson made the first bucket of the second half to draw the Blue Hose level, but USC Upstate quickly scored five straight to restore its advantage at 24-19. Presbyterian countered with an 8-2 run, giving the Blue Hose their first lead of the second half, 27-26, with 5:59 left in the third quarter. PC stretched the margin as high as 37-32 with 1:43 remaining in the period, and held a 38-35 edge heading into the fourth quarter.
Leading 43-39, the Blue Hose went on a 9-0 run, stretching the advantage into double-digits for the first time, 52-39, with 4:22 to go. That run proved to be the difference, as Upstate did not get any closer than eight points the rest of the way.
Players of the Game
Johnson scored a game-high 18 points to top the three Blue Hose in double-figures. Carter added 16 points and Jade Compton chipped in 12 for PC. Johnson also tied for the team lead in rebounds (7), assists (4) and steals (4). Molly Coleman led USC Upstate with 12 points, while Denijsha Wilson netted 11. McKinley Brooks-Sumpter recorded a game-high nine rebounds for the Spartans.
Stats of the Game
Presbyterian connected on 19-of-57 (33.3 percent) from the floor, while USC Upstate made 19-of-45 (42.2 percent). Both teams tried 14 three-pointers, with the Blue Hose making three, and the Spartans hitting four. PC went 19-of-24 from the charity stripe, while Upstate made 8-of-11 at the line.
The Blue Hose forced a season-high 27 turnovers, including a season-best 15 steals, while committing only 14 turnovers. The turnover margin led to an 18-8 PC advantage in points scored off of turnovers. Presbyterian also enjoyed a 32-24 edge in points in the paint.
- Johnson’s 18 points were a season high, as were her seven rebounds. Her four assists moved her to 241 for her career and past Aianna Kelly (2013-17) for fourth in the program’s DI era (2007-present) in career assists.
- Carter scored in double-digits for the third straight game, netting 16, and has scored in double-figures in a team-best seven of PC’s nine games. The sophomore also grabbed a career-high tying three steals.
- Compton’s 12 points put her in double-figures for the third time in the last four games. The senior tied Johnson for the team lead in rebounds (7) and steals (4). The four steals were a new career high.
- Tess Santos tied with Johnson for the team lead in assists with a career-high tying four, her second straight game with four helpers.
The Blue Hose and Spartans continue their weekend series on Sunday afternoon at 2 pm on ESPN+.