CHARLESTON, S.C. - Alyssa Mann scored a career-high 25 points to lead four Buccaneers in double-digits as Charleston Southern topped Paine on Monday night in the Buc Dome, 69-62.
Mann scored 15 points in the second period to spark the Bucs (1-1) to a double-digit lead at the half and the senior guard added eight more points in the fourth to hold off the Lions in CSU's 2015-16 home opener.
"Overall I am pleased with some of the things we did tonight," said CSU head coach Fred Applin. "We have a lot of freshmen and incoming players who are new to the program this season and they played well tonight in their first home game."
Monique Maximilien finished with 14 points and nine rebounds. The senior center recorded a career-high seven blocked shots in the game, while leading the Bucs from the free throw line in hitting eight of 11 attempts. Overall, the Bucs went 16-for-25 from the charity stripe.
"We had a lot of improvements in getting to the free throw line tonight," said Applin. "If we knock down our free throws like that in every game, we'll be in good shape."
Alecia Hardy added 11 points on 5-of-9 shooting from the floor, while Shauntavia Dobson connected on a trio of three-pointers, including one just before the third period buzzer to finish with 11 points in the contest.
The Buccaneers remain at home on Thursday night as CSU hosts Warner in a nonconference matchup in the Buc Dome. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.
Maximilien had the hot hand early with six of CSU's first 12 points as the Buccaneers jumped out to a 12-5 lead midway through the first period. Ashley Watts rallied Paine late in the period though with six points down the stretch to give CSU the 15-14 lead after the first period.
Mann carried the Bucs in the second period with the senior guard connecting on seven of her nine shot attempts from the floor in scoring 15 of CSU's 23 points over the period. CSU's lead reached double-digits just before the halftime break as the Bucs closed out the half on an 11-2 run with Mann scoring nine points during the stretch, including a steal and layup before the buzzer to give the Bucs the 38-28 lead.
The Bucs and Lions traded baskets in the third period with CSU's lead never slipping below six at 40-34 with 8:49 on the clock following a Chasity Mullins layup. Dobson put the Bucs back up by double-digits at the end of the period with a three-pointer from the top of the key to give CSU the 52-41 lead heading into the fourth.
Paine attempted to rally back twice in the fourth period, cutting the CSU lead down to 58-52 with 5:07 following the Watts layup, and again at 67-62 with 52 seconds left. However, Mann iced the Lions' comeback with a pair of free throws to close out the CSU win.
Watts led the Lions with 21 points and five assists in the contest, while Janisha Wilkerson finished with 14 points and eight rebounds.