Women’s basketball rally from behind to win in overtime

Despite being down by as many as 16 points in the second half, the Lions would not quit as they rallied to a 74-67 victory over Valdosta State University in overtime Dec. 4.

UNA (4-1, 1-0) used its pressure defense to force turnovers and cut down the Blazer lead. The Lions forced 39 turnovers and had 22 steals as a team.

“Our ball pressure was just phenomenal in the second half,” said head coach Miss Tiber. “Then our speed and athleticism became a factor. If you can’t get easy layups because your defense gets stops on a night you’re struggling offensively you don’t win.”

The Blazers led 61-57 with 1:43 left but could not put the Lions away thanks to turnovers and missed free throws. After another VSU missed free throw, senior guard Lauren Faris drove to the goal for a layup to tie the game at 61 with 21 seconds left.

The Blazers had a chance for the game-winner but missed, sending the game into overtime.

“The biggest key defensively was Shay Trent going one-on-one on their best player and getting the stop on the last possession of the game,” Tiber said. “It was a freshman on a senior and she got the stop to send it into overtime. That was big time.”

In overtime, the Lions scored the first four points and never looked back as they completed the comeback.

“In overtime, we felt like we had all the momentum,” said junior guard Jennifer Towne. “We fought too hard to not win.”

Towne finished the game with 23 points and six rebounds, while shooting (8-12) from the field.

The Lions shot only 36 percent from the field and 20 percent from the three-point line for the game.

UNA hosts West Florida University Dec. 6 at 1 p.m.