Camels defeat Blue Hose 49-39 in Big South defensive battle

Hayley Barber (Will Bratton photo)
Hayley Barber (Will Bratton photo)

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CLINTON, S.C. --- Campbell led wire-to-wire en route to a 49-39 victory over Presbyterian on Saturday in a Big South Conference women's basketball matchup at the Templeton Center. Hayley Barber and Brianna Cribb led the Camels (11-4, 3-1 BSC) with 10 points apiece while Hannah Long pulled down a career-high 11 rebounds.

It was the first victory for Campbell head coach Ronny Fisher on the visiting sidelines at Presbyterian after coaching the Blue Hose for the past eight seasons. The win also tied the program's best start to a season in its NCAA era matching the 1987-88 and 1990-91 campaign's 11-4 records.

VIDEO: Coach Fisher and Hannah Long Interview

The Camels held the Blue Hose (4-11, 2-2) to just a .185 (5-for-27) shooting clip from behind the arc and just .280 shooting from the field (14-for-50). CU turned 20 PC turnovers into 18 points and outscored the Blue Hose 20-14 in the paint.

Barber's scoring tally was a career-high total and it included a career-high two three pointers. MaKala Rouse and Caroline Bowns each scored eight points and they combined for five steals. Long added seven points while Cribb assisted on four baskets.

The Camels held the Blue Hose to just six points in the third period, a program-low for a Big South opponent, and took a 36-25 lead to the fourth. After seeing its lead drop to single digits early in the frame, Campbell led by as many as 15 twice in the fourth period. However, PC cut a 46-34 deficit to just 46-39 with 27 seconds to play and had the ball after a Camel turnover. Riley Hemm looked to bring PC within four with a three attempt, but it couldn't fall as Summer Price came up with a rebound and was fouled

Price hit one of two free throws before the Camels forced another missed three by Hemm and Barber pulled down the huge rebound. Price was quickly fouled once again and hit two free throws to ice away the win in the final seconds of action.

Taylor Petty scored a game-high 11 points for PC while Courtney Storey added nine points, but had seven turnovers. Virola Salina tallied a team-high five rebounds, but the Camels outrebounded the Blue Hose 36-23 overall. Janie Miles had four assists.

The Camels opened the game with the first seven points before the Blue Hose finally got on the board with a Virola jumper at the 5:40 mark in the first. Aianna Kelly followed it up with a three to make it a quick 5-0 run, but the lead went back to seven (12-5) on Baber's first triple of the contest.

Campbell led 13-5 on a Cribb free throw before PC cut the lead in half with the final four points of the first period to set the score at 13-9 at the first intermission.

Presbyterian drew back within two of the lead early in the second but a 6-0 Campbell run, capped by a Bowns trey, earned the second eight point advantage of the contest at 19-11 with 7:08 left in the second.

Each team suffered nearly a five minute scoring drought midway through the frame before Storey drained a three to set the score at 16-12 with 2:15 on the clock.

Another 6-0 spurt for the Camels, capped by a Barber triple, gave CU its first double-digit lead of the game at 27-16 with just under a minute to play before halftime. Following a Virola three, Barber capped the first half scoring with a layup in the waning seconds of the half to send CU to the break with a 29-19 advantage.

In a low-scoring third period, a layup by Long and a Cribb free throw put the Camels up 34-21 with 3:42 on the clock. A layup from Storey broke a nearly five minute scoring drought for PC, but it was answered by a Cribb layup with one minute off the clock. Kelly pulled the Blue Hose within 11 of the lead with a late jumper in the third before heading to the decisive fourth period.

Up next for the Camels will be a conference matchup against Winthrop at Gore Arena Tuesday night. It will be the second of four-straight Tuesday home matchups. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.