Price scores 23, but VCU tops Camels 66-53

No. 33 MaKala Rouse (Bennett Scarborough Photo)
No. 33 MaKala Rouse (Bennett Scarborough Photo)

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BUIES CREEK, N.C. --- Summer Price registered her first 20-point effort of the season, but Campbell suffered a 66-53 setback to VCU in non-conference women's basketball action from Gore Arena on Saturday night.

MaKala Rouse scored a career-high 13 points while Price finished with 23 as the duo tallied 62 percent of the Camels' points. Price connected on a pair of three pointers and added a game-high four steals. However, CU shot just 3-for-18 from behind the arc as a team and just 33.3 percent from the field (20-for-60). Hannah Long pulled down a game-high nine rebounds.

A Rouse three-pointer drew the Camels (1-2) within seven on the Rams' lead (55-48) with 4:29 left to play. After a defensive stop on the other end, Price put up a tray that would have cut the deficit to four, but it went halfway down and rolled out. VCU (2-1) responded with a 7-1 run and held a 62-49 advantage with 1:24 showing on the clock.

CU was only able to close the gap back to 11 in the final minute of play before VCU came away with the road victory. The Rams had three double-figure scorers led by Bria Gibson at 14 points. Curteeona Brelove and Isis Thrope chipped in 12 and 10 points apiece while Keira Robinson led the Rams on the boards with seven rebounds.

After an early 4-2 Camel lead, CU went on a three-minute scoring drought but only trailed 9-6 with 4:15 left in the first period. VCU answered with a 7-0 spurt and a Mooriah Rowser thee gave the Rams a 19-8 lead after the opening frame.

Campbell opened the second period with a 7-0 run of its own to draw back within four of the lead. The Rams' advantage remained four after a Hayley Barber jumper in the paint made the score 25-21 with 3:11 to play before halftime. VCU would close out the first half with seven of the final nine points to take a 32-23 lead to the locker room.

In the third period, Price drained a three pointer to cut into the Rams' 35-29 advantage with 6:33 showing on the clock. Brelove hit a layup to push the VCU lead back to double-digits at 41-31, but following another Price triple, the Camels stayed within single digits for the remainder of the third. Price would end up scoring 12 of CU's 13 points in the third period to keep the Camels within striking distance of the lead at 47-38 heading to the fourth.

Early in the fourth, Taya Bolden hit a jumper as the score stood at 49-40 in favor of the Rams. Both sides traded baskets before a Breanna Foster hit a free throw to cut the Rams lead to 55-48. Kieira Robinson hit a jumper before Rouse's three set up the final four minutes of action.

VCU held a narrow 37-36 rebounding advantage while the Camels forced 18 Ram turnovers with eight steals compared to 16 turnovers of their own. VCU shot 50 percent from the field (28-for-55) including 80 percent from behind the arc (4-for-5). The Rams out-scored the Camels in the paint 42-28 and scored 24 points off turnovers.

Campbell will be back in action on Tuesday when it wraps-up its quick two-game homestand against in-state foe N.C. Central. Tipoff from Gore Arena is set for 7 p.m.