MISENHEIMER — For most of three quarters Friday night, North Rowan found themselves locked in a tighter than expected contest at Gray Stone.
Then the Cavaliers flipped on their defensive switch and threw in a slew of three point daggers to finish strong and claim a 71-50 YVC win over the Lady Knights.
Throughout the first half and most of the third period, it was truly a see-saw battle with seven lead changes and a couple of ties. North (10-2, 10-7) led 17-16 after one and then managed a 30-25 halftime lead thanks to a key three pointer by Demeria Robinson late.
The margin was just four, 35-31, after a Kendall Taylor three point play midway in the third. As if they had seen enough, North turned up the defensive pressure behind Robinson and guard Anna Lingle to force a sequence of turnovers and easy baskets. Three pointers by Tayor Sells and Fredejah Royer helped the cause as the lead reached 48-37 after three.
North then opened the final quarter on an 11-0 run keyed again by the defense to erase any doubt about the outcome.
“We had a lot of trouble getting going in the first half, “ said Robinson. “but we got our intensity up in the second half and put on more pressure”
Robinson did her part with six steals, eight assists and a clutch 15 points. Her total included two three pointers in the first period to keep Gray Stone from building a big lead.
Sells was the real sharpshooter with 18 points to lead the Cavs, all on three’s. Lingle chipped in with 14 and Royer had nine.
“We just got off to a slow start,” North Coach Brian Lytton said. “ We weren’t as focused as we needed to be but our defense came through.”
Gray Stone (2-9, 5-13) was led by guard Catherine Harward with 12, all in the first half and soph Erin Ansbro of Salisbury with 11.
NOTES: Freshman Special Washington, North’s top scorer, is expected back from a knee sprain next week Lytton said.
NORTH ROWAN (71) — Sells 18, Robinson 15, Lingle 14, Royer 9, Farmer 8, Allen 3, Carter 2, Smith.
GRAY STONE (50) — Harward 12, Ansbro 11, Taylor 7, Harrington 4, Sullivan 4, Deese 2, Burris 2,, Redman 2, Cadle 2, Efird 2, Everhart, Giles.
N. Rowan 17 13 18 23 — 71
G. Stone 16 9 12 13 — 50