by Cory Guinn
WILSON, N.C. – The Barton College women's basketball team used its best shooting performance of the season to defeat the Crusaders of North Greenville University 84-69 on Wednesday evening.
Sophomore Shatisha Dukes led the Lady Bulldogs with 18 points on 7-of-12 shooting from the floor with eight rebounds in 24 minutes of play as Barton shot a season-high 47.8 percent from the floor, including 40 percent from long range.
Freshman Tatyana Jackson followed close behind with 17 points of her own, while senior Kaila Lea rounded out the double digit scores for Barton with 16 points off of the bench. Senior Brianna Thomas led the team with 12 rebounds to go along with seven points.
The Bulldogs paced their season-high shooting percent with a red hot first half, making 20-of-34 shot attempts, including 4-of-7 from beyond the three-point line. Barton's command on the game would come early with an 11-4 run over the game's first three minutes of action.
After two free throws by the Crusaders cut the Barton lead to one-point, the Bulldogs battled back as a layup from freshman Deja Jeanpierre pushed the advantage to 28-15 with just over seven minutes left in the opening half.
Barton's lead would grow to as large as a 21-point edge on a three-pointer from freshman Chanel Shannon late in the half as the Bulldogs held a commanding 44-24 lead at intermission.
The second half saw much of the same action early on as Barton's lead grew to 60-32 with 13:36 left to play on a layup by Dukes. North Greenville never got any closer than a seven-point deficit as the Lady Bulldogs used a 14-6 run over the final three minutes to secure the win.
The victory pushed Barton to a 4-9 record overall, while evening out the Conference Carolinas' record at 3-3 with a key matchup on the horizon. The Bulldogs will host the Crusaders of Belmont Abbey College on Saturday, January 10 at 5:30 p.m. in Wilson Gymnasium.