by Cory Guinn
WILSON, N.C. – The Barton women's basketball team shot 31 percent in the second half and committed 16 costly turnovers, leading to a 78-71 loss to rival University of Mount Olive on Wednesday night in Wilson Gymnasium.
The Trojans, ranked No. 10 in the latest NCAA Division II Southeast Regional Poll, improved to 19-5 overall and 16-3 in Conference Carolinas with the win. The Lady Bulldogs fell to 15-10 with a 12-7 mark in league play and had their five-game win streak snapped.
Barton made 9-of-17 shot attempts from the floor in the first half to build a 21-16 advantage, but Mount Olive shot 61.1 percent in the second period as the BC lead was cut to 42-40 at halftime.
In the second half, Mount Olive forced Barton into 11 turnovers, including seven in the third quarter, and built a lead as large as 12 point with 23 seconds remaining in the third. UMO scored 24 total points off of the Barton miscues, while the Lady Bulldogs held a 47-37 advantage in total rebounds.
Mount Olive's Kiara Jones led all players with 27 points to go with 11 rebounds. Ni'Ya Styles (18 points) and Daria Simmons (15 points) rounded out the double digit scores for the Trojans.
Sophomore Kianna Wynn totaled 19 points and 14 rebounds for her 15th double-double of the season, while junior Karimah Dean had 14 points before fouling out of the game. Sophomore JerBria Smith chipped in 10 points in 22 minutes off of the bench.
Barton stays at home to host conference foe Emmanuel (Ga.) College on Saturday, February 18 at 2 p.m.