LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN -- The Covenant women's basketball team overcame a seven-point halftime deficit and outscored visiting Berea by 14 in the final two quarters to take a 71-64 victory in a USA South opener on Friday evening inside Barnes PE Center.
Bekah Walter scored a career-high 25 points in the victory for Covenant (2-3, 1-0 USA South) while Joanna Smith had 12 second half points to go along with eight rebounds. Taylor Robinson poured in 11 points, five rebounds and five assists and Jessica Bell totaled 10 points, five rebounds and four assists.
Raquel Rosa led the Scots with nine rebounds.
Covenant trailed 35-28 at halftime and then fell behind by 10 early in the third period. But the Scots put together a 13-0 scoring run over the next six-plus minutes of action, capped by a Clara Dirkse Wolfe long jumper, to take a 43-38 lead with 3:48 left in the third. Berea responded with a run of its own later in the quarter as the visiting Mountaineers outscored Covenant 15-4 over the final three-and-a-half minutes to gain a 53-47 lead heading into the fourth.
With a tremendous defensive effort, Covenant outscored Berea 24-11 in the final stanza to pull away for the victory. Covenant grabbed the lead for good on a Hannah Monday jumper with 4:48 remaining that made it 56-55 and Berea made just 3-of-18 from the field in the period.
The lead extended late thanks in large part to an 11-for-13 effort at the foul line for the Scots in the period. Walter went 7-of-9 at the line and scored the final seven points for Covenant.
Covenant finished shooting 48.1 percent (25-of-52) from the field and 18-of-25 from the foul line. The Scots had a 47-36 rebounding edge.
Berea (3-1, 0-1 USA South) took a seven-point lead into halftime on the strength of its offensive rebounding. The Mountaineers had 11 second-chance points on 12 offensive boards in the half to make up for 32.5 percent shooting. For the game, Berea ended with 14 second-chance points and 17 offensive rebounds.
Adriana Williams led the Mountaineers with 24 points and Kristen Barnes added 12 off the bench. Bri Lanham tallied seven points and seven rebounds. Berea shot 32.5 percent (25-of-77) from the field and 6-of-33 from beyond the 3-point line. The Mountaineers also struggled at the foul line as they connected on just 8-of-18.
Covenant hosts Brevard on Saturday inside Barnes PE Center. Tip-off is set for 2 p.m.
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