BANNER ELK, N.C. – A very quick start for the King University women's basketball team led them to what they went down to Lees-McRae College to get, a win. Tia Keitt propelled the Tornado over the Bobcats after dropping 20 points, while going 8-for-13 from the field in the 63-47 win.
King (17-5, 12-4 CC) was quick to score and even quicker to open the lead up right from the start, tallying the first seven points of the game before the Bobcats got on the board. Bonnie Durrett and Keitt would hit back-to-back three point baskets to lengthen the Tornado lead to 11 with over 15 minutes to play in the first half. Lees-McRae would cut the lead to six before Alley Sprouse, Arnelle Collins and Keitt would hit shots opening the lead back up to 13 points. At the under-five media timeout, King held on to a nine point lead, 29-20.
Lees-McRae (5-17, 4-12 CC) would get within five with fewer than two minutes left on the clock but Keitt would add a layup, silencing their run. Durrett would hit from three followed by a Sprouse layup to bring the lead back up to 12 right before the halftime horn blew. As a team, King shot 41.0 percent and the Bobcats shot 40.7 percent.
The second half started with King getting on the board first once again as Amy Van Deventer added a free throw to open the lead to 13 points. Van Deventer gave King 16 point leads on two occasions with just over 13 minutes in regulation. The lead would grow to 19 points when Sprouse added a basket while being fouled and capped it off with the free throw. Chelsea Bowling would open the lead to 22 points with eight minutes remaining in the contest. At the under-five media timeout, King led Lees-McRae 62-38. The Bobcats would end the game on a seven to zero run but it would not be enough as King would go on to win the game by 16 points, 63-47.
As a team, King shot 42.4 percent while Lees-McRae shot 36.4 percent. The Tornado outscored the Bobcats in the paint 26-18 and pulled down 38 boards to Lees-McRae's 32. Leading King and all scorers was Keitt with 20. Van Deventer added 11 points while Harper led the Tornado in rebounding with 10.
King will tip off again next on Saturday when they will travel to Emmanuel College to take on the Lions. The game is scheduled to start at 2:00 pm in Franklin Springs, Ga.