Feb. 9, 2017

Box Score

The Basics
Score: Mercer 84 - Western Carolina 53
Records: Western Carolina 7-18, 2-8 SoCon; Mercer 19-5, 8-2 SoCon
Location: Hawkins Arena - Macon, Ga.

MACON, Ga. - Western Carolina women's basketball fell to Mercer 84-53 Thursday in Hawkins Arena. The loss halts the Catamounts' two-game winning streak.

Mercer outscored Western Carolina 46-15, in the first two periods, and shot 54 percent from the field to secure the win. The Bears scored the first eight points of the game holding WCU to only seven points in the first period and eight points in period two.

The Catamounts clawed back a bit in the third period drawing even with the Bears with each team scoring 17 points in period three. Western Carolina, who had struggled a bit earlier in conference play at the free throw line, cashed in out its trips to the charity stripe against the Bears going 15-of-21 for 71 percent.

Sophomore guard Raziyah Farrington came off the bench to lead the Catamounts with 12 points going 5-of-7 from the free throw line. It is the third straight game she has scored in double figures and the fourth time in the last five games.

Mercer's Khalia Lawrence led all scorers with 13 points. She was one of five Bears to score in double figures.

Turning Point
Mercer scored the first eight points of the game outscoring Western Carolina 22-7 in the first period to set the stage for the win. Overall, the Bears built a 46-15 lead at the half -- a mountain of points the Catamounts could not traverse.

Individual Leaders
- Farrington led WCU with 12 points.
- Kyia Hough just missed scoring in double figures with eight points and dished out four assists.
- Lawrence led Mercer with 13 points.
- Sherae Bonner had two blocks.

Inside the Box Score
- After Mercer outscored Western Carolina 46-15 in the first two periods, the Catamounts clawed back to even in the third period as both the Bears and WCU each scored 17 points in the period after half-time.
- After scoring only 15 points in the first two periods, Western Carolina put together 38 in the ensuing final two periods.
- Mercer shot a scorching 54 percent from the field.
- The Bears ripped down 36 rebounds while the Catamounts had 27.
- Each team hit four three-pointers.
- Mercer missed just two free throws in 12 trips going 10-of-12. Western Carolina was 15-of-21.
- Western Carolina had 21 turnovers in the game equating to 33 Mercer points.
- WCU got 28 bench points.

News & Notes
- Western Carolina had its two-game winning streak snapped in the loss to Mercer.
- Junior guard JonTay Mitchem scored her first points in seven games hitting a field goal at 3:29 left in the first period. She ended the game with three points.
- After missing two games, due to injury, junior forward Bonner was back in the line-up against Mercer getting her first points in two games in the second period - hitting a field goal. She ended the game with four points and four rebounds.
- With the loss, Western Carolina is now 0-11 against Mercer and 0-6 on the Bears' home court.
- With two blocks against Mercer, Bonner now has 100 for her career. She is three shy of moving up to fourth place in the Catamount record books which would displace Sandra Julian (19-77-81), who had 102 in her career. She also becomes just the fifth player in Western Carolina women's basketball history to have 100 or more blocks in her career. For the season, Bonner has 38 blocks placing her 10th in the Catamount record books for blocks in a season. In fact, Bonner has two of the top-10 seasonal block marks as she had 43 in the 2015-16 season.
- Tess Harris has hit at least one three-pointer in the last four games.
- Hough has been sizzling at the free throw line, in the last three games. She is 12-of-15 from the charity stripe including going 4-for-4 from the free throw line against Mercer and averaging 12.7 points per game.
- In the last three games, Farrington is averaging 17.3 points per game and shooting a sizzling 60 percent (15-25) from the field.
- When Western Carolina and Samford meet on Saturday the two teams will be looking to each get back in the winning column in SoCon play. Each team is 2-8 in conference play. WCU still has a bit of momentum having won two of its last three games while Samford has lost four straight.

Up Next
Western Carolina completes its two-game road swing at Samford at 3 p.m. Eastern Saturday in the Pete Hanna Center. The game can be seen on ESPN3 and fans can listen on the Catamount Sports Network.

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