Jan. 18, 2009
Box Score in PDF Format
WINSTON-SALEM, NC – Clemson junior Lele Hardy knocked down nine free throws including six in the final 1:57, and the Lady Tigers came away with a 64-60 win at Wake Forest on Sunday afternoon. Hardy scored 17 of her 19 points in the second half as Clemson erased a halftime deficit to post the victory for the seventh time this season.
The Lady Tigers scored their final 11 points from the foul line with Tasha Taylor converting three and Christy Brown adding a pair to go along with Hardy’s six.
“We are really happy to win this one, especially after the tough stretch we had,” said Clemson Head Coach Cristy McKinney. “We had good play from the bench as well as from some starters.”
Hardy drove the lane for a basket at the 4:13 mark to cut the Demon Deacon lead to just one at 54-53. Brown’s first free throw of the afternoon then tied the score with 3:07 remaining, and her second followed a jumper by Wake Forest’s Alex Tchangoue to put it back at a one-point game with just under two minutes left. Hardy grabbed the rebound off of Brown’s missed free throw, was fouled and drained both attempts to give the lead to the Lady Tigers for the first time since a 42-40 advantage at the 11:56 mark.
After Brooke Thomas hit a foul shot for the Deacs, Taylor put Clemson back on top by two at 59-57 with 1:09 remaining. Wake Forest then missed a pair of free throws and the Lady Tigers forced a critical turnover with 18 seconds left. The Deacs kept fouling and Clemson kept hitting in the final seconds to shot 65.2 percent for the afternoon.
Wake Forest held the edge at the break after a first half in which the teams went a combined 17-59 from the field. The Demon Deacons hit 8-of-9 from the foul line for the 25-21 advantage.
The Lady Tigers then opened the second half on a 13-7 run to take a 34-32 lead at the 15:49 mark. April Parker knocked down a trio of 15-foot jump shots during the stretch and finished with 12 points for the game. The teams traded points for the next four minutes before Tchangoue completed a three-point play that put her Demon Deacons up by one at 43-42
The scored stayed close but Clemson couldn’t overtake Wake Forest until Brown’s free throw with three minutes left.
“In the second half, we continued to play defense and did a much better job of attacking the basket and getting to the free throw line.”
Tchangoue led all scorers with 24 points and 12 added 12 rebounds for a double-double. Corinne Groves also posted double figures for the Deacs with 12.
Hardy grabbed 12 boards for her fifth double-double of the season and also had a team-high five assists. With her 19 points moved into Clemson’s top-25 list with 937 career points. Taylor totaled 13 points with three assists for the afternoon.
The Lady Tigers will step out of conference play for their next contest as they play host to Charleston Southern on Tuesday, Jan. 20 at Littlejohn Coliseum.
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