The Belmont Abbey women's basketball team fell to Converse 60-46 tonight in the Wheeler Center. It was the ninth loss in a row for the Crusaders, who now stand at 7-17 on the season and 6-12 against Conference Carolinas opponents. Converse moved to 5-17 overall with a 4-14 record.
The Crusaders fell into an early 12-2 deficit, but scored seven points in a 1:30 stretch. The Abbey, however, did not score in the final 3:31 of the first quarter and trailed 18-9 going into the second.
The Abbey's defense stepped it up in the second, as it forced the Valkyries into a 6:48 scoreless drought. The Abbey pulled to within seven, and trailed 28-20 at halftime.
The third quarter was very competitive as Gabrielle Bethel and Taylor Gittings scored 12 of the Abbey's first 14 points of the half as the Abbey pulled to within four. The teams traded baskets for a while and the Abbey pulled to within three with a minute left in the quarter. Converse, however, scored five points in the period's last minute to take a 49-41 lead into the fourth.
Unfortunately for Abbey, the Crusaders only managed to score five points in the fourth quarter and did not score in the final 7:31 of the game. Converse took the contest 60-46.
Bethel logged her fourteenth double-double of the season as she scored 22 points on a 10-for-13 shooting night and grabbed 11 rebounds, tied for the game's high. She also recorded four steals. Junior Larisa Bishop contributed seven boards while scoring seven points.
On Wednesday night, the Crusaders will play their final home game of the season when they welcome Lees-McRae. The game will begin at 5:30 p.m.