CHICAGO, Ill – Tierra Huntsman scored 17 points and Keira Currie posted 10 rebounds, yet Gardner-Webb women's basketball fell to UAB, 59-49, in the opening contest of the 2016 Maggie Dixon Classic on Friday evening.
Huntsman led the Runnin' Bulldogs (0-1) in scoring with 17 points on 5-15 shooting, including 3-7 from behind the three-point line. Evelyn Adebayo added nine points and Currie scored eight points.
UAB (1-0) was led in scoring by both Deanna Kuzmanic and Imani Johnson who each scored 12 points. Keonna Farmer led the Blazers in rebounds with eight.
UAB opened the first period with a quick 6-2 run, yet GWU responded with a 6-2 run of its own on a Adebayo three-pointer and a trey by Huntsman to tie the game at 8-8 with 5:59 to go in the first period. UAB would the seize control of the frame with a 10-0 run to lead 18-8 at the end of the first period.
The Blazers would push their lead to as high as 18 points with 5:12 left in the second period, yet the Runnin' Bulldogs would rally, trimming the lead to nine with 24 seconds left in the half after a three-pointer by Huntsman. GWU would trail UAB, 31-22, at halftime.
UAB would push its lead back to up to 18 points at 52-34 with 2:00 remaining in the third, but Gardner-Webb would trim its deficit to 13 points at the end of the frame after a jumper by Huntsman and a free throw and layup by Currie.
Play would stay balanced throughout the fourth period, with the Blazers extending its lead to 16 points at 58-42 with 4:28 on the clock, yet GWU would keep fighting, trimming the deficit to 11 points at 59-48 with 2:23 to go, but was unable to put any additional points on the board until a free throw by Charlisa Jenkins with 41 seconds remaining set the score at 59-49, which would be the final score.
The Runnin' Bulldogs return to action Saturday as the 2016 Maggie Dixon Classic continues, taking on either Appalachian State or tournament host DePaul at 7:00 pm.