CHARLESTON, S.C. - The Charleston Southern women's basketball team is back in action this weekend as the Buccaneers travel to Longwood on Thursday night, before taking on Liberty on Saturday afternoon in Big South Conference play.
The Buccaneers enter the week posting an 8-14 record, 4-9 record in Big South Conference action and will be looking to bounce back from a recent skid which has seen CSU drop their past four games since their last victory over Presbyterian. CSU fell to both Liberty and Longwood in their first games of the 2014 calendar year, dropping to the Flames at home on January 2nd, 92-69, while falling to the Lancers, 78-71, on January 4th.
Both games will be streamed live courtesy of the Big South Network and live stats will be provided by each school's respective sports information department. Tipoff between the Buccaneers and Lancers on Thursday is set for 7 p.m. inside Willett Hall, while CSU takes on Liberty on Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. at the Vines Center.
CSU struggled in their past game against Radford, falling in a back-and-forth affair against the Highlanders at the buzzer, 60-57.
Trailing by 10 with 4:32 remaining, the Buccaneers rattled off an 8-1 run to bring the game all the way back to within three points on a three-pointer by Alyssa Mann, putting the score at 55-52 with 3:01 remaining. The Highlanders lead crept back up to six points as Aisha Foy and Paris Brower connected on three free throws over the following two minutes to put the score at 58-52 with 52 ticks remaining.
DJ Fowler and Breshara Gordon swapped free throws to keep the margin the same at 60-54 with 24 seconds remaining before Erin Bratcher connected on a triple from deep in the left corner to cut the deficit back down to three points with 60-57 remaining.
Radford beat the CSU full-court pressure on the ensuing in-bounds pass, giving Gordon the opportunity to put the game away from the charity stripe, but both her attempts missed with Tatum Jarvis grabbing the defensive rebound and giving CSU one final opportunity. Fowler found Jarvis on the right wing, but Gordon made up for her free throw miscues with the block at the buzzer, pushing the CSU final attempt wide and ending the game with the Highlanders holding on for the 60-57 victory.
Longwood has been on a skid of their own recently, falling in their past six games dating back to their win against Gardner-Webb in entering the week with a 6-16 record, 3-10 in Big South action on the year.
Liberty has also dropped their last two games, falling in double overtime to High Point, 94-89, on Thursday, while falling to Campbell 61-55 in overtime on Saturday.
Erin Bratcher continues to lead the CSU efforts on the season in averaging 13.1 points per game. The senior guard is also averaging 2.95 three-pointers per contest on the year and is leading the team from the free throw line in connecting on 81.6 percent from the stripe.
Fowler and Anicia Dotson are also averaging double-digits on the year with Fowler averaging 11.0 points per game and 3.3 assists per game, while Dotson is averaging 10.2 points and 6.7 rebounds per game. Dotson also leads the team with four double-doubles on the year and five double-digit rebound efforts on the season.
Earlier this season against Longwood, Charleston Southern was unable to hold off a dominant late run as the Buccaneers fell in Big South play to the Lancers, 78-71.
The Buccaneers scored the first 10 points of the game and held a double-digit lead throughout a majority of the contest against the Lancers, boasting an 11 point lead at 68-57 with 6:03 remaining on a Monique Maximilien jumper. Longwood, however, closed out the contest though on a 21-3 run, holding the Buccaneers scoreless from the field following Maximilien's basket in coming back for the win.
Daeisha Brown continues to lead the Lancers' efforts on the season in averaging 16.4 points per game. The sophomore guard also leads Longwood in shooting percentage (.448), steals (30) and assists (42). Raven Williams is also in double-digits for the Lancers with 11.1 points per game, while Kyndal Skersick is Longwood's leading outside shot with 28 three-pointers on the season. Khalilah Ali leads the team with 6.3 rebounds per game, while Heather Tobeck is the leading defender inside the paint with 28 blocked shots on the year.
Taking on Liberty, Charleston Southern was unable to overcome a halftime deficit as the Buccaneers fell at home to Liberty on Thursday night inside the Buc Dome in Big South play, dropping a 92-69 decision to the Flames in their first matchup of the 2014 calendar year.
Four different CSU players scored in double-digits, led by a season-high 18 points from Alyssa Mann as Charleston Souhern threatened to bring the game back to within single digits on four different occasions in the second half, but Ashley Rininger paced three Liberty players with double-doubles on the night with 27 points and 11 rebounds to pace the Flames to the Big South win.
Rininger continues to pace the Flames offense on the season, averaging 15.6 points and 9.7 rebounds per game on the year, while shooting at a 55.5 percent clip. The sophomore center is also leading the way with 31 blocked shots on the season as the Flames boast a 6-3 record at home inside the Vines Center.
Mickayla Sanders is the leading outside threat with 39 three-pointers on the season in averaging 9.9 points per game, while Emily Frazier and Sadalia Ellis have combined for 147 assists on the season to set up the Liberty offense.
Charleston Southern returns home next weekend for their final two home games of the 2013-2014 regular season as the Buccaneers host High Point on Thursday, before taking on Campbell on Senior Day on Saturday.