Hempstead, NY – Senior Annie Payton tallied 18 points and sophomore Jakelle King-Gilchrist added career-highs in both points and rebounds to lead Hofstra to a 55-43 Colonial Athletic Association victory over the UNCW Seahawks at the Mack Sports Complex Friday night.
Payton was 7-for-9 from the field with two three-pointers and was 2-for-2 from the charity stripe for her 18 points, which were just three from tying her career-high. King-Gilchrist posted career-bests of 11 points and six rebounds, topping her previous highs of six points and five rebounds.
Senior Anma Onyeuku added nine points and five caroms while freshman Elo Edeferioka tied for team-high honors with six boards for the Pride, who improved to 8-10 overall and 3-4 in the CAA with their second consecutive win. Hofstra connected on 18-of-49 shots from the field (36.7 percent) and forced 26 turnovers while recording 15 steals.
The Seahawks were led by freshman Ryan Flowers, who matched her season-high with 17 points while grabbing a game-high eight rebounds. Classmate Naqaiyyah Teague added eight points and six boards for UNCW, which dropped its second consecutive game to fall to 3-18 overall and 2-6 in league play. The Seahawks shot 32.5 percent from the field, connecting on 13-of-40 field goal attempts. UNCW, which had and eight-player active roster, was outscored 34-3 off the bench.
After the two teams split the first 18 points through the first 7:21 of the contest, King-Gilchrist’s jumper at the 11:50 mark started a 16-5 run that put the Pride ahead, 25-14 with 4:36 to play in the half after a Thomas-Palmer jumper. Payton tallied six points while King-Gilchrist added four in the Hofstra spurt.
While the Seahawks were held without a field goal for the final 10:37 of the half, UNCW chipped away behind five points from Flowers and three by Atkins to close the half the half on an 8-3 run to cut their halftime deficit to 28-22. Payton finished the half with eight points while Gilchrist tied her career-high in the first half with six and added five caroms. Hofstra hit 11-of-25 field goals, made eight steals and forced 13 Seahawk turnovers. UNCW, which connected on just 6-of-20 attempts from the field, was led by Flowers' nine points.
The Pride didn’t let up in the second half and opened with a 16-6 run over the first 9:30, including the nine unanswered points to close out the spurt, to open up their biggest lead of the contest at 44-28 following a King-Gilchrist lay-up. Once again, Peyton was Hofstra’s big gun in the spurt with eight points including two three-pointers. UNCW’s shooting woes continued as Flowers’ lay-up 4:54 into the second half ended a field goal drought of 15:31.
The Seahawks were able to cut the deficit to single digits after a 15-6 run over the ensuing 8:01 to close to within seven at 50-43 after a Flowers lay-up with 2:01 to play. The freshman had six of UNCW’s 15 points in the run. But that would be as close as they would get as the Pride added the final five points in the contest to post the 55-43 victory.
The Pride return to action on Sunday, Feb. 2 when they travel to Philadelphia to face Drexel. Game time at the Daskalakis Athletic Center is 2 p.m.