North Alabama Tops Western Carolina for Their Seventh-Straight Win

North Alabama Tops Western Carolina for Their Seventh-Straight Win

NEWARK, N.J. – Emma Wallen and Savannah Stults combined for 31 points as the University of North Alabama women's basketball team improved to 7-0 on the season with an 89-66 win over Western Carolina Sunday at the NJIT Thanksgiving Classic.
 
The win caps off an undefeated month of November for the third consecutive season for the Lions. UNA started the 2015-16 season with a 9-0 record and won its first 13 games last season.
 
Against Western Carolina, the Lions again used solid play in the second and third quarters to take control. Nursing a 22-18 lead at the end of the first period, UNA outscored the Catamounts 48-29 over the next two periods. For the year, North Alabama has outscored opponents by 103 points in the second and third quarters.
 
UNA led by seven midway through the second quarter before a basket by Brittany Panetti started a 13-1 run for the Lions. Five different UNA players scored during the spurt. A jumper by Ansley Eubank put North Alabama ahead 45-26 with 1:09 remaining in the period. A free throw by Ivy Wallen with two seconds remaining gave UNA a 48-28 lead at the break.
 
Western Carolina would get no closer than 15 in the second half. After the Catamounts closed the gap to 50-35 early in the third quarter, UNA answered with another balanced attack. This time, six different players scored as a 30-10 run pushed the lead to 65-40 at the 2:52 mark of the quarter. Ivy Wallen assisted in five of the seven baskets during the run. She took a pass from Eubank and scored herself to cap the spurt and give North Alabama the 25-point advantage.
 
Each team scored 19 points in the final quarter as the Catamounts never challenged. The largest lead of the game came with 3:52 remaining when a three-point basket by Sarah Suttle gave UNA an 84-53 lead.
 
Emma Wallen hit five three-pointers on the day and finished with a game-high 16 points. Stults added a pair of threes and finished with 15 points and a team-leading five rebounds. Panetti had 12 points while Eubanks also reached double figures with 10 points. Ivy Wallen notched 12 assists to record her third game of the season with double-digit assist totals.
 
Gabby Smith led Western Carolina (1-6) with 13 points and nine rebounds.
 
North Alabama will play at Xavier on Dec. 2. Tip-off is set for 2 p.m. (EST) at the Xavier campus in Cincinnati, Ohio.
 

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