Arieal Johnson led the University of Mount Olive with 17 points as the Trojans defeated Pfeiffer University 68-49 Wednesday night in Misenheimer N.C. for Conference Carolinas women's basketball. Four Trojans scored in double figures on the night.
Pfeiffer took the early lead against Mount Olive (0-0 Overall, 1-0 Conference Carolinas) on two made free throws just under two minutes into the game. The game was tied three times over the course of the next 7:31 as a neither offensive could break away.
Ty Wallace connected a free throw attempt to give Mount Olive the first lead of the game with 10:15 to go in the first half. The Trojans expanded their lead to as high as 18 with a three-pointer by Rachel Fehl. Pfeiffer (0-1,0-1) got a Safia Sheikh jumper to go and brought the Trojan lead down to its lowest of the half at 14 with 1:50 to go.
The second half saw the Trojan lead grow to as high as 22 with a 7-0 run that ended with Fehl's three-pointer at 12:51. The Falcons responded with 10 unanswered points behind Sheikh who went 2-for-2 from beyond the arch and added a pair of free throws and Pfeiffer was down 12. Ni'Ya Styles ended the run with a made free throw at the 7:32 mark.
Mount Olive never let the Falcons come close to bringing the lead under double digits. The Trojans ended the game on a 5-0 run that was capped off with Johnson gaining her 17th point with a free throw. Anamaria Zjacic tried to give the Trojans two more points off a steal with just seconds left but time expired and Mount Olive came away on top.
Johnson finished one rebound short of a double-double with 17 points, nine rebounds and four blocks. Wallace helped the Trojans with a double-double 14 points and 11 rebounds. Styles had 13 points. Fehl finished with 11 points.
For Pfeiffer Sheikh led all scorers with 16 and Meg Pritchard had a double-double 10 points and 10 rebounds.
Mount Olive will return home on Saturday Nov. 22 to play host to UNC-Pembroke in a non-conference match-up as part of the 49th annual Pickle Classic. Game time on Saturday is set for noon.