No. 13 Lander takes PBC opener with 57-50 win

Photo Credit: Lander Athletics

AMERICUS, Ga. – The No. 13-ranked Lander women’s basketball team continued its unbeaten start to the season as the Bearcats picked up a road victory in their Peach Belt Conference opener, defeating Georgia Southwestern 57-50 on Wednesday evening.

Lander’s record now stands at a perfect 3-0 and 1-0 in league play. The Bearcats are off to their first 3-0 start since the 2010-11 season. Georgia Southwestern fell to 2-2 on the year and 0-1 in PBC action.

Makaila Cange led the way with 20 points and 17 rebounds, both career highs, for her second double-double of the season The sophomore went 7-of-11 from the field, and dominated the defensive glass, pulling down 16 defensive boards.

Miriam Recarte ut up 10 points and finished just two rebounds shy of her first double-double as a Bearcat. The Pamplona, Spain, native knocked down two of Lander’s four three-pointers on the night.

Amiaya Melvins chipped in nine points and three steals, while Zamiya Passmore finished with eight points and six assists.

Lander shot a collective 20-of-49 (.408) from the field and assisted on 11 of those made baskets, while racking up 30 points in the paint.

On the defensive side of the ball, the Bearcats limited the Hurricanes to 30.6 percent shooting on the night and forced six of Georgia Southwestern’s 18 turnovers in the fourth quarter. 

The first half featured seven lead changes, but a Quin’De’Ja Hamilton three-pointer sent the Bearcats to the break with a narrow 31-29 halftime lead. Lander trailed by four midway through the third period, but a three from Recarte sparked an 11-2 run over the final 4:51 of the quarter. 

The Hurricanes took a 50-49 lead with 6:48 to play, but Lander held Georgia Southwestern scoreless the rest of the way and closed the game with an 8-0 run to seal the win.

Lander returns home for back-to-back games beginning on Saturday, Jan. 9 when it hosts Clayton State. Tip-off from Finis Horne Arena is scheduled for 1:30 p.m.

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