Charleston Southern will welcome Gardner-Webb as the Buccanneers take on the Runnin' Bulldogs at home on Tuesday night. Tipoff at the Buc Dome is set for 7:00 p.m. on the Big South Network and fans can follow the action via Live Stats on CSUsports.com and in-game updates on Twitter: @CSUGameDay.
Gardner-Webb entered the 2016-17 slate ranked No. 6 in the Big South Preseason Poll. The Runnin' Bulldogs are currently ranked No. 7 in the league with an overall record of 8-9 and a 3-3 record in Big South play and are fresh off a close conference loss at High Point last week, falling to the Panthers 71-69 on Saturday. The Runnin' Bulldogs were also topped by Presbyterian in a close contest resulting in a 56-55 Blue Hose victory and were handed their third conference loss in a 67-57 defeat at Radford earlier this month. Gardner-Webb's moss recent loss at High Point brought an end to a three-game winning streak made up of victories against Longwood, Liberty and UNC Asheville.
Gardner-Webb's offense is led by Tierra Huntsman. The redshirt-junior guard is ranked second in the Big South with an average of 15.1 points per game. The Connersville, Indiana-native is also ranked second in the conference with a three-point field goal percentage of 41.3 percent and 33 three-pointers on the season. Huntsman is averaging 2.0 steals per game while sophomore forward Evelyn Adebayo leads the Runnin' Bulldogs' defense with 6.2 rebounds per game.
Gardner-Webb Head Coach Rick Reeves is a four-time Big South Coach of the Year (1992-93, 1996-97, 1997-98, 2009-10) and is entering his 13th season with the Women's Basketball program. Prior to coaching the Runnin' Bulldogs, Reeves spent five seasons as the head women's basketball coach at Southern Mississippi and was named State Coach of the Year during his nine-year tenure from 1990-99 with the Liberty Lady Flames' program in Lynchburg, Virginia. Reeves is the all-time career wins leader of Gardner-Webb's Women's Basketball program, entering the 2016-17 season with 151 career victories.
Last Time Against Gardner-Webb
Charleston Southern 66, Gardner-Webb 63 (February 20, 2016)
Brianna Lakes capped a fourth quarter Charleston Southern comeback with a jumper from the left corner with 57 seconds left on the clock as the Buccaneers topped visiting Gardner-Webb in the Buc Dome on Saturday afternoon, 66-63.
The Bucs (12-14, 7-10) trailed by as many as seven points early in the fourth quarter before mounting their comeback with Lakes providing six of her eight points in the quarter. CSU brought the game back to within one point at the 3:52 mark following a pair of Alecia Hardy free throws, narrowing the gap down to 57-56.
Ke'Asia Jackson gave the Bucs the lead that the 1:44 mark with a jumper, but GWU's Candace Brown answered on the other end to give the Runnin' Bulldogs (17-10, 11-6) the 59-58 lead with 1:22 remaining. Lakes answered on the other end to give the Bucs the lead for good off the pass from Shauntavia Dobson. CSU went 6-for-6 from the free throw line over the final 37 seconds with Dobson and Alyssa Mann converting all of their attempts from the charity stripe as the Bucs split the season series with Gadner-Webb.
Four Buccaneers were in double-digits in the scoring category led by Hardy's 11 points. Jackson and Dobson both had 10 points off the bench for the Bucs, while Mann added 10 points and five assists in a team-high 37 minutes in the CSU victory. Key to the Bucs' success was their prowess at the free throw line on the afternoon. CSU went 15-of-16 from the stripe in the contest including hitting their final 10 from the line in the win. The Buccaneers' bench also came up big in the CSU win with the Bucs outscoring the Runnin' Bulldogs 39-7 in the game.
Alexus Hill led the Runnin' Bulldogs with 20 points, shooting 8-for-11 from the floor including 4-for-4 from behind the arc in the loss. Candace Brown added 18 points, while Parker had 15 points and 14 rebounds in completing the double-double.
Recapping CSU's Last Game
Charleston Southern 57, Radford 45 (January 21, 2017)
Charleston Southern handed Radford its first conference loss after a second-half comeback effort pushed the Buccaneers past the Highlanders for a 57-45 victory at home on Saturday. The Buccaneers (9-8, 3-3) were led by the double-digit offensive performances of Ke'Asia Jackson (13) Alyssa Mann (12) while Rachel Burns sparked Charleston Southern's defense with a career-high seven steals and seven rebounds.
Charleston Southern opened the game with intensity as Burns recorded the first bucket with a jumper along the baseline. The Buccaneers would quickly regain possession with back-to-back steals from Burns and a Mann three-pointer for the 5-0 lead in the opening minutes. Radford (13-4, 5-1) got on the board with a pair of free throws from Janayla White, but an aggressive CSU defense answered back and forced four turnovers in the first ten minutes. The Highlanders closed the gap late in the quarter with a three-pointer from Khiana Johnson off an inbound play and a jumper from Destinee Walker to tie the game up at 11.
Radford was led by White's double-double performance, scoring 11 points for the Highlanders and a game-high 16 rebounds. Walker also put up double-digits with a game-high 15 points and was just shy of a double-double with eight rebounds.
The Buccaneers struggled to get their shots to fall in the second quarter as Radford went on a 20-0 scoring run building a 15-point lead (26-11) at the 2:43 mark. CSU put up six unanswered points late in the quarter with a Jackson jumper, two Mann free throws and a basket from Nayla long to cut the Highlanders lead to 28-20 at the half.
Breannah Bretches gave the Buccaneers their first lead since the first quarter with a defensive rebound she would take down court and finish with a layup for the 33-31 lead. Radford ended a 10-minute scoring drought with a jumper from Walker to put the game within two (35-33) but CSU never let go of the lead. Bretches went on to score a total of nine points and six Buccaneers contributed points in the final quarter. CSU would seal the upset with multiple trips to the free-throw line, shooting 86.4% against Radford's 70.6% from the stripe. Burns closed out the CSU victory with a free throw, putting an end to Radford's undefeated conference record with a 57-45 Buccaneer win.
Buccaneers' Standings in the Big South and the NCAA
- Alyssa Mann leads the Big South with 4.5 assists per game and is ranked 94th in the NCAA
- Alyssa Mann is 3rd in the Big South in steals per game with 2.1
- Alyssa Mann is 5th in the Big South in points per game with 12.9
- Ke'Asia Jackson leads the Big South in points per game with 15.3
- Ke'Asia Jackson leads the Big South in free-throw percentage with 92.1 and is ranked 8th in the NCAA
- Ke'Asia Jackson is 2nd in the Big South in field-goal percentage with 43.3
- Elyse Kiploks is 3rd in the Big South in blocked shots with 23
- Elyse Kiploks is 3rd in the Big South in blocked shots per game with 1.35
- Rachel Burns is 4th in the Big South in steals per game with 2.0
Team Standings in the Big South and the NCAA
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in turnovers forced with 21.53 and is ranked 17th in the NCAA
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in turnover margin with 5.47 and is ranked 23rd in the NCAA
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in steals with 156
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in steals per game with 9.2
- Charleston Southern is 2nd in the Big South in assists with 213
- Charleston Southern is 2nd in the Big South in assists per game with 12.5
- Charleston Southern is 3rd in the Big South in fewest turnovers with 273
- Charleston Southern is 3rd in the Big South in blocked shots with 54
- Charleston Southern is 3rd in the Big South in blocked shots per game with 3.2
- Charleston Southern is 3rd in the Big South in won-lost percentage with 52.9