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Blaikley Crooks
Freedom grad Blaikley Crooks was one of two Bears with 16 points.
photo courtesy of Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics

Lenoir-Rhyne Women’s Basketball Wins Exhibition At UNC-Wilmington

The Lenoir-Rhyne Women’s Basketball Team got 20 points from Blaikley Crooks and a dozen from Azariah Fields as the Bears took down Division 1 UNC WIlmington 57-46 in exhibition play. Even through it was an exhibition game for the Bears, the game is an official game in the standings for UNC Wilmington. The Seahawks dropped their season opener for the first time since the 2019 opener at Wake Forest. The Bears played the Seahawks in an exhibition game right before the Seahawks fell to Wake Forest to open the 2019 season.

The host took an early 5-0 lead in the first ninety seconds of the game which ended up being their biggest lead of the day. Hannah Stull scored halfway through the first quarter to give the Bears an 8-7 lead, a lead the Bears held on for the rest of the game. Crooks and Emily Harman added baskets at the end of the first ten minutes to give the Bears a five point lead after one quarter.

After the Seahawks cut the lead to two with 5:39 left to play in the first half, LR went on a 12-2 to run to close the half and stretch the lead to a dozen at intermission. Crooks had nine in the first quarter and eight in the second quarter as she lead all scorers with 17 at the break.

Both teams came out flat in the third quarter as they combined to shoot 7-26 combined from the floor. The Bears held their lead heading into the 4th quarter. Stull and Maddie Dillinger had a pair of baskets in the quarter.

Seahawks cut the lead to single digits a few times in the final period but the Bears hit six of nine from the charity stripe in the quarter to ice the game. LR defense held the Seahawks to 27% shooting from the floor and forced 16 turnovers on the night.

Crooks finished with 20 points on 7 from 16 shooting while adding four rebounds while Fields joined Crooks in double figures with 12 points and four assists. Harman added a game high 14 rebounds while Dillinger had eight. Dillinger had six of the Bears eleven bench points on the evening.

The Bears will open the 2022-23 season in the PBC/SAC Crossover. Bears will play hosts USC Aiken Saturday at 1pm.