MACON, Ga. (School Release)- The Mercer women's basketball team opened its 2012-13 season with a 57-50 win over Brevard as part of Homecoming weekend on Friday evening at Hawkins Arena.
Junior Kendra Grant paced all Mercer (1-0) scorers with 14 points and six rebounds while sophomore Alicia Williams joined her in double-figures, netting 12 points to go along with four assists and two blocks.
Sophomore Teanna Robinson had a career night for the Bears in a starting role. The Grayson, Ga. native set career-highs in points (9), rebounds (9), blocks (2) and minutes played (23) in a winning effort.
Things didn't start very well for Mercer, as Brevard opened the game up strong using a pair of free throws by senior Candice Fritz to take an early 13-3 lead with 15:00 remaining in the first half.
The Bears would slowly chip away at the visitor's advantage, however, using an 11-2 run over the next 5:03 of the contest, capped by a Robinson lay-up, to bring Mercer within one, at 15-14.
Both teams would trade baskets over the remainder of the first half before freshman Jessica Prieto drained a three-pointer with 1:56 left in the period to send Mercer into halftime with a 23-21 lead.
The Orange and Black continued to ride the momentum generated by Prieto to start the second half. Mercer built its lead up to seven points after a mid-range jumper by Grant made the score 31-24 in favor of the home team with 17:16 remaining in the second half.
Yet the Tornados wouldn't go away, using an old-fashion three-point play by freshman Tuccoa Brackett to trim the Bears lead down to just four, at 41-37, with 9:04 left in regulation.
Mercer would not let Brevard get any closer for the remainder of the game, however, cashing in on a clutch lay-in by sophomore Precious Bridges to make the score 54-48 Mercer and effectively put the game out of reach.
The Bears dominated in the paint, out-scoring Brevard 32-14 down low while also holding a commanding 52-39 rebounding advantage in the win.
Senior Micheala Watkins led all scorers with 19 points for the Tornados while Fritz recorded a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds in the loss.
Mercer returns to action on November 14 when it hits the road to take on Troy. Game time is scheduled for 8 p.m. at Sartain Hall.