DAHLONEGA, Ga. – The Lander women's basketball team led for over 37 minutes in a battle of the Peach Belt Conference's top teams, but a three-pointer from Amber Skidgel with 2.5 seconds remaining gave North Georgia an 82-79 win and the regular season conference title on Wednesday night.
Lander (20-7, 17-4 PBC) was led by Mylea McKenith, who scored 21 points in the loss. Amiaya Melvins scored a career-high 18 points, while Jessica Harris added 17 points and a team-high four assists. Miriam Recarte led the Bearcats with six rebounds and notched 11 points.
The Bearcats held a nine-point lead with 1:02 remaining in the third quarter, but North Georgia (23-4, 18-3 PBC) ended the game on a 27-15 run to win its 17th consecutive win at home against a conference opponent.
Recarte's three with 2:13 to go put Lander up 79-75, but North Georgia answered with a pair of free throws on the ensuing possession and a layup with 35 seconds remaining to tie the game. After an empty possession for the Bearcats, the Nighthawks found Skidgel on the right wing to give North Georgia a three-point lead with less than three seconds remaining. Lander inbounded from half court, but could not get a clean look for the game-tying three.
The Nighthawks held a 35-27 edge in rebounding and shot 57.6 percent from the floor in the second half. Both teams went 6-for-19 from beyond the arc with Lander going 13-of-16 from the free-throw line. UNG was 18-of-22 at the charity stripe.
Lander takes on Augusta at 1:30 p.m. Saturday afternoon for Senior Day at Finis Horne Arena.