MARYVILLE, Tenn. -- The Covenant women's basketball team saw its season come to a close on Friday with a 79-56 loss to LaGrange in the first round of the USA South Tournament held on the campus of Maryville College.
Covenant ends the year with a 12-13 overall record. The Scots entered the conference tournament for the first time since joining the league as the No. 5 seed from the West. LaGrange (17-9) moves on to face No. 1 seed Maryville on Saturday at 5 p.m.
Senior Aleigha Williams scored a team-high 15 points to go with seven rebounds and two assists in her final collegiate game. Fellow senior Rachel Price grabbed seven rebounds and had two steals, while Alex Quimby had three steals. Kaley Hallmark added 11 points, four rebounds and four assists and Joanna Smith had eight points and six boards.
Covenant shot 47.1 percent in the opening quarter and led 19-14 at the end of the period. The Scots jumped out to a 7-0 lead behind baskets from Williams and Smith sandwiched around a 3-pointer from Hallmark in the first three minutes of the contest. Covenant maintained a lead for the entire period and Jessica Bell's layup with 21 seconds left in the quarter gave the Scots a five-point margin.
The lead stayed between five and seven for the first few minutes of the second period. Williams knocked down a 3-pointer with 7:50 left in the second to give the Scots a 26-19 lead. LaGrange would go on a 13-0 run over the next three-and-a-half minutes to gain a 32-26 edge. The Panthers then extended that lead to nine at the half at 42-33.
LaGrange scored the first 10 points of the third period to go ahead 52-33 and Covenant would not be able to get back into the contest the rest of the way.
Covenant cooled off from the field and ended shooting 33.3 percent (22-of-66) from the floor. The Scots held a 40-38 rebounding advantage, with 19 offensive rebounds and 20 second chance points.
LaGrange received 16 points and six rebounds from Marilauren Farr, while Megan Garcia had 11 points off the bench. Kelsey Walthall had 10 points and three assists. The Panthers shot an even 50 percent (32-of-64) for the game with 10 3-pointers.
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