Lady Chargers hold off regions top seed to win NJCAA regional title
From the start of the season, the Georgia Highlands College women’s basketball team had a mission to get better each and every game.
They saw the product of that philosophy on Saturday afternoon when the Lady Chargers held off top-seeded South Georgia Tech 65-63 to win the NJCAA Region 17 championship in Americus.
“What a gutsy, gutsy performance by our girls tonight, we overcame a lot of adversity tonight,” GHC head coach Brandan Harrell said. “I can’t say enough about our ladies, especially our sophomores.”
The game came down to the final minute with Georgia Highlands up by five. The host Lady Jets cut the lead to two following a bucket and foul shot.
GHC in-bounded the ball and took it the length of the floor, but the shot fell short with South Georgia getting the rebound. With 14.4 seconds on the clock the Lady Jets’ shot fell short and GHC got the rebound and ran the clock out.
The Lady Chargers (24-9) were led by Kayla Carter’s 19 points and six rebounds, while De’Ashia Jones had 10 points and five rebounds in limited playing time due to foul trouble. China Underside provided a big spark off the bench, scoring eight points.
The game was a battle of runs as South Georgia Tech (27-6) came back after being down as many as 11. The Lady Jets’ Angela Tompkins was the key to their comeback, scoring 27 points.
The game had 13 lead changes.
“We overcame De’Ashia Jones, who got in early foul trouble, and their best player Tompkins having a great night, but we found a way to fight through it,” Harrell said.
The Lady Chargers got off to another fast start like they have for all three conference playoff games, building an early 9-3 lead. South Georgia Tech fought back to take its first lead, 14-11, at the 4:15 mark of the first period.
Georgia Highlands’ women will next travel to Spartanburg Methodist College in South Carolina for the NJCAA District J National Tournament play-in game. The date for the contest has yet to be determined.