Heartbreak in Overtime as USC Upstate falls 93-86

Heartbreak in Overtime as USC Upstate falls 93-86

Spartanburg, S.C. – The USC Upstate women's basketball team lost 93-86 in overtime to UNC Asheville on Tuesday evening inside the G.B. Hodge Center.

The Spartans have now lost two consecutive games and drop to 5-10 overall and 1-3 in Big South Conference play. The Bulldogs on the other hand improve to 7-9 overall and 2-3 in Big South competition.


  • The Spartans are now 0-2 this season in overtime games and drop just their second home game this season. USC Upstate is now 2-1 when wearing gray jerseys and 1-1 in night games.
  • Brianna Lewis scored 29 points to lead the Spartans in scoring. The 29 points were her second highest point total of the season. Lewis also led the Spartans with eight assists in the game.
  • Riley Popplewell scored 17 points and collected four steals and four rebounds in the loss. DeNisha Swain added 12 points and six rebounds in the contest.
  • Michaela Gibbons once again led the Spartans in rebounding eight boards in the contest.
  • UNC Asheville's Sonora Dengokl went off on Tuesday night, going 18-22 from the field and scored 36 points. Dengokl never attempted a free throw in the win for the Bulldogs.
  • Evonna McGill finished with 15 points, while Brook Jordan-Brown added 10 points and a team high eight rebounds. Zip Scott had a game high seven assists for the Bulldogs.
  • USC Upstate shot 47 percent from the field, 50 percent from three point range and 76 percent from the free throw line.
  • UNC Asheville went 14-15 from the field and shot 93.3 percent in the third quarter alone. The Bulldogs finished the game shooting 55 percent from the field, 26 percent from beyond the arch and 63 percent from the free throw line.
  • The Bulldogs outscored the Spartans 50-34 in the paint, 22-21 off of turnovers and 15-12 off of second chance points. UNC Asheville's bench outscored USC Upstate 34-16 in the game.
  • The contest featured seven lead changes and 12 ties.


  • The Spartans jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first two minutes of the ball game.
  • UNC Asheville responded with a 5-0 run of their own over the next few minutes to knot the game up at five.
  • The game remained a back-and-forth contest until 38 second mark in the opening quarter.
  • Natalia Panufnik knocked down a three to give the Spartans a three point advantage and seconds later Brianna Lewis hit a midrange jumper with nine seconds to go in the quarter.
  • The Spartans lead 21-16 going into the second quarter of play.


  • With 8:15 to go in the half Juliet Esadah took a pass from Zip Scott and trimmed the Spartans lead to 23-22.
  • DeNisha Swain hit a three point field goal with 7:31 to go in the second quarter. The basket sparked a Spartans 9-0 run.
  • Tiffany Wilson ended the Spartans run with a layup at the 3:34 mark of the half.
  • Michaela Gibbons and Bailey Wensler each hit a three pointer down the stretch to help increase the Spartans lead.
  •  USC Upstate went into halftime with a 40-27 lead.


  • In the early parts of the quarter the Spartans and the Bulldogs battled traded buckets each possession.
  • With 7:08 to go in the third stanza, Swain connected on a three point attempt to give the Spartans a 15 point lead. This was the highest lead the Spartans held during the game.
  • UNC Asheville then went on a 13-5 run over the next 3:30 of game time to pull the Bulldogs within five of the Spartans.
  • USC Upstate went into the final quarter of play up 64-57, despite the Bulldogs shooting 93 percent from the field in the third quarter.


  • UNC Asheville started the final quarter on a 7-0 run and took a 66-64 lead with 5:54 to go in the game.
  • Anda Kuzmina hit two consecutive three pointers to give the Spartans a four point lead late in the game.
  • With 45 seconds to go in the game Jordan-Brown took a pass from Dengokl and laid the ball in to give the Bulldogs a 74-72 advantage with 45 seconds to go in the game.
  • Coming out of a USC Upstate timeout Lewis laid the ball in and tied the game at 74.
  • Popplewell then stole the inbounds pass and gave the Spartans a chance to win the game in regulation.
  • Out of the timeout break, Lewis raced into the paint and then kicked the ball out to Gibbons at the top of the key. Gibbons missed the open look but Swain grabbed the offensive rebound and the last second shot fell short.  


  • The two teams traded a pair of baskets to start out the overtime period.
  • Tied at 78 with 3:47 to go in the game, UNC Asheville went on a 7-0 run and never looked back.
  • Kathryn Kirkwood scored the final points of the game for the Spartans.  
  • UNC Asheville scored five points off of turnovers in the overtime period.


  • The Spartans will remain at home and face Charleston Southern on January 19 at 2:00 p.m.

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