No. 5 Clayton State women roll past North Georgia; set Peach Belt Conference consecutive home victory record
MORROW, Ga. – January 3, 2012 – With a chance to make history in the Peach Belt Conference on Tuesday, the Clayton State Laker women's basketball team left nothing to chance in rolling to an impressive 72-44 victory over visiting North Georgia at the Athletics and Fitness Center.
With the victory, the Lakers recorded a Peach Belt Conference record 27th straight home victory. That eclipses the old PBC mark of 26 straight, set by Columbus State from 1999-2001, Clayton State, ranked fifth in the nation in Division II, won its 10th straight game to improve to 13-1 overall and 3-0 in the Peach Belt. The Lakers have won nine straight against the Lady Saints.
North Georgia falls to 6-4 overall and 1-1 in the Peach Belt.
The Lakers' vaunted pressure defense set the tone early as Clayton State forced North Georgia into 22 first-half turnovers and limited the Lady Saints to only 33 percent shooting from the field.
Clayton State used a 12-0 run the latter part of the first half to take control. Tanisha Woodard scored on a fast break lay-up to give the Lakers a 31-14 lead at the 6:04 mark. Woodard followed with two more lay-ups off North Georgia turnovers to give Clayton State a 38-14 lead with 3:17 remaining.
A lay-up off another Lady Saint turnover by Keona Dixon with 43 seconds remaining gave Clayton State a commanding 42-16 lead at halftime.
North Georgia would not get closer than 24 points in the second half. The Lakers, meanwhile, stretched its lead twice to 28 points in the first six minutes. A jump shot by Genesis Kelly gave Clayton State a 49-21 lead at the 16:34 mark, and a lay-up by Dixon with 14 minutes remaining gave the Lakers a 51-23 lead.
Clayton State pushed its lead over 30 points for the first time at the 10:18 mark as a 3-point basket by Alexiss Griffin gave the Lakers a 59-28 lead. The Lakers' largest lead of the game was 35 points, 69-34 on a lay-up by Dixon at the 4:44 mark.
Dixon paced a balanced Clayton State scoring attack with 15 points off the bench on 7-for-11 shooting from the field. Woodard scored 14 points with eight rebounds, five assists and three blocked shots, and Brittany Hall added 10 points. The Lakers shot 41 percent from the field and out-rebounded North Georgia 39-36.
Defensively, Clayton State limited North Georgia to only 38 percent shooting from the field, including only 27 percent from 3-point range, and forced 31 Lady Saint turnovers.
Sophomore forward Jaymee Carnes, the nation's leading scorer, paced North Georgia with a double-double, scoring 23 points with 12 rebounds on 9-for-13 shooting from the field. She was held to eight points in the first half.
Clayton State has a key two-game road swing in the Peach Belt Conference, traveling to UNC Pembroke and Francis Marion. The Lakers play at UNC Pembroke on Thursday at 5:30 p.m., and at Francis Marion on Saturday at 1:30 p.m.