CHARLESTON, S.C. - Charleston Southern will host Longwood for Senior Day in the Buccaneers' last home game of the 2016-17 season. Tipoff between the Bucs and the Lancers is set for 3:00 p.m. on the Big South Network and fans can follow the action via Live Stats on CSUsports.com and in-game updates on Twitter: @CSUGameDay.
Longwood enters Saturday's matchup with a 1-14 mark in the conference, recording a lone 83-78 win two weeks ago at home against Winthrop. While the Lancers hold the 8-5 advantage in their series with the Buccaneers, CSU has topped Longwood in the last four meetings.
The Lancers are led by Eboni Gilliam. The senior forward is averaging a team-high 10.1 points and 5.4 rebounds per game. Gilliam has shot for double-digits in three of Longwood's last six games and recorded a career-high 27 points made up of 13 baskets in the Lancers' first outing with Winthrop on January 24. Micaela Ellis is another notable Longwood players to watch. With 26 starts on the season, Ellis leads the Big South with an average of 36.4 minutes on the court per game. The junior guard also leads the league with an average of 4.3 assists per game and has a team-high 42 steals this year.
Head Coach Bill Reinson is in his seventh season with Longwood's Women's Basketball program and his 14th season in the athletics department. During his tenure, Reinson has guided the Lancers to a 47-128 mark since taking over as interim head coach on December 6, 2010. He was officially named to the head coach position following the 2010-11 season on April 12, 2011. Prior to taking over the women's program, Reinson was an assistant coach with Longwood's men's basketball program. Additionally, he served as an assistant women's coach for the final 13 games of the 2002-03 season under Longwood's all-time winningest coach and 2015 Longwood Hall of Fame inductee Shirley Duncan.
Last Time Against Longwood
Charleston Southern 62, Longwood 47 (January 28, 2017)
Paced by a career-high 25 points from Rachel Burns, Charleston Southern picked up its fifth Big South Conference win of the season with a convincing 62-47 road win over Longwood on Saturday afternoon.
The Buccaneers (11-8, 5-3) turned a 25-22 halftime lead into a double-digit advantage after the third quarter on the way to recording CSU's third straight conference win. The Bucs also recorded their first conference road win of the season with the 15-point victory over the Lancers (3-16, 0-8).
Burns went 11-for-20 from the floor to pace a 49.1% shooting day from the floor for the Bucs in her second 20-point game of the season. The sophomore guard added nine rebounds to pace CSU to the 39-30 advantage on the glass in the win. Ke'Asia Jackson was also in double-digits for the Bucs with 10 points in the contest. The Big South's leading scorer entering the game, Jackson was 5-of-11 from the floor and added a pair of steals in the contest.
Jackson and Burns paced CSU with four points apiece in the first quarter in building the 14-10 advantage after the first 10 minutes. The Bucs ended the quarter on a 6-2 run with Jasmine Blackmon contributing two of her six first-half points with a layup with 15 seconds left in the period in building the four-point advantage.
Blackmon added CSU's first two baskets of the second quarter as the Bucs stretched their advantage to 18-13 less than 75 seconds into the period. Longwood cut the Bucs' lead down to 20-19 with 1:44 left in the quarter following a pair of Micaela Ellis' free throws. Burns connected on five straight points to end the first half and give CSU the 25-22 lead at the break.
CSU utilized a 10-3 run in the third quarter to take its first double-digit lead of the game at 39-29 following a Burns' three-pointer with 4:06 left in the period. Brianna Lakes and Tierra Steede both added layups late to give CSU the 46-33 advantage after three periods.
Longwood narrowed the CSU lead to within single digits at 46-38 following a Kate Spradlin layup and a Khaila Hall three-pointer with 9:20 to go. Burns silenced the Lancers' threat with a stretch with seven straight points to help the Bucs put the game away. Ellis and Spradlin led Longwood with nine points apiece in the loss, while Autumn Childress led the team with nine rebounds in the contest.
Recapping CSU's Last Game
High Point 64, Charleston Southern 62 (February 21, 2017)
Charleston Southern's fourth quarter comeback effort fell just short as the Buccaneers were topped by High Point, 64-62, in the Buc Dome on Tuesday night.
Ke'Asia Jackson led Charleston Southern (14-12, 8-7) with a game-high 26 points. After a scoreless first half, the sophomore guard recorded 11 of CSU's 12 points in the third quarter and 15 of 26 points in the fourth. With just three seconds remaining in the game, Jackson put the Bucs' within two with a three-pointer off the inbounds pass for what would be CSU's last basket in the loss.
High Point (12-14, 10-5) held the lead for nearly 39 of the 40 minutes in contest and pulled ahead early with the hot hand from downtown. The Panthers entered the night as the Big South three-point leader, averaging 6.6 per game, and recorded nine three-pointers while shooting 33.3 shooting percent from beyond the arc. High Point was led by Kaylah Keys' 16 points and game-high trio of three-pointers, while Kat Harris recorded 13 points, contributing two of the Panthers' nine buckets from deep.
High Point got off to a hot start, connecting on five of its three-pointers in the first ten minutes of the game to lead the Bucs 21-12 at the end of the first quarter. A layup from Kennedy Currie to open the second quarter gave CSU its first double-digit deficit of the game that they would struggle to overcome for the duration of the game. Breannah Bretches closed out the quarter with eight consecutive points for the Bucs, draining four of five shot attempts in the last three minutes of the half. High Point outscored CSU 20-12 in the second quarter to enter halftime with the 41-24 lead.
Jackson found her shot in the second half, recording 11 of the Bucs' 12 points in the third quarter, including a single-handed 7-2 scoring run in the final two minutes of the period. With 10 minutes left to play, CSU trailed High Point by 18 points with the score at 54-36 heading into the fourth quarter.
The Panthers earned a 20-point lead with a pair of free throws from Harris to open the fourth quarter. The Buccaneers responded with a 9-0 scoring run sparked by a jumper from Alyssa Mann that Bretches followed with the CSU's first three-pointer of the game. Jackson wrapped up the ninth straight Buccaneer point with a jumper in the paint to put CSU within 11 points with 6:33 on the clock.
High Point's Currie ended CSU's run with a layup, but Bretches answered back with her second three of the contest on her way to finishing the night with 16 points. After another layup from Currie, Jackson went on another streak, recording eight consecutive points for the Bucs and wrapped up the run with her seventh free throw of the night to put CSU within four points (60-56) with 1:20 remaining.
A free throw from Keys made it a five-point game, but Jackson found Bretches for the layup on the next play to make it a one-possession game with the score at 61-58 with exactly one minute left to play. An expiring clock and foul-trouble got in the way of a CSU comeback as Harris went to the line twice and added three points with time ticking down and the score at 64-58. Rachel Burns split a pair of free throws with 18 seconds on the clock and Jackson sunk a deep three off an inbounds pass from Bretches at the three second mark to close out the narrow 64-62 CSU loss.
Buccaneers' Standings in the Big South and the NCAA
- Alyssa Mann is ranked 2nd in the Big South with 4.2 assists per game and is ranked 134th in the NCAA
- Alyssa Mann is ranked 4th in the Big South with 2.08 steals per game and 113th in the NCAA
- Ke'Asia Jackson is ranked 2nd in the Big South in free-throw percentage with 84.5 and is ranked 39th in the NCAA
- Ke'Asia Jackson is ranked 2nd in the Big South in points per game with 15.4
- Ke'Asia Jackson is ranked 3rd in the Big South in field-goal percentage with 43.3
- Rachel Burns ranked 2nd in the Big South with 2.2 steals per game and 95th in the NCAA
- Elyse Kiploks is ranked 2nd in the Big South in blocked shots with 31
- Elyse Kiploks is ranked 3rd in the Big South in blocked shots per game with 1.2
Team Standings in the Big South and the NCAA
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in turnovers forced with 21.08 and is ranked 14th in the NCAA
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in turnover margin with 5.85 and is ranked 19th in the NCAA
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in steals with 234
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in steals per game with 9.0
- Charleston Southern is ranked 2nd in the Big South in fewest turnovers with 396
- Charleston Southern is ranked 3rd in the Big South in assist turnover ratio with 0.79
- Charleston Southern is ranked 3rd in the Big South in won-lost percentage with 53.8