Perry scores a career-high 21 points for the Panthers
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Junior Rachael Carter (Merrimack, N.H.) scored a game-high 24 points, including four free throws in the final minute of play to break a 52-all tie, and Salem State University held off a determined Plymouth State University squad, 57-54, in non-conference women's basketball action at Foley Gymnasium.
Carter finished with a double-double as she also grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds for the Vikings (4-5). She did most of her scoring on free throws, scoring 16 points from the line. Carter was the only Viking to score in double figures, as senior Ashley White (Salem, Mass.) and Ginny Fleming (Peabody, Mass.) contributed seven points apiece.
Sophomore Taylor Perry (Simsbury, Conn.) led the Panthers with a career-high 21 points, connecting on a pair of three-point shots and all seven of her free throws. Her previous high was a 16-point effort at Rhode Island College on Dec. 1, 2012. Sophomore Bry Bennett (Lancaster, N.H.) was a solid contributor for the Panthers (0-7) with nine points, nine rebounds and two blocked shots and senior Kait Deering (Sidney, Maine) chipped in with seven points and eight boards.
Salem State led most of the first half, with the margin reaching 15 points (28-13) with seven minutes to play. The Panthers closed the half with an 18-6 run, closing to within three points (34-31) at the intermission. Carter scored 16 points in the half for the visitors, while Perry had 11 for PSU, including nine straight points in the rally, and Bennett added seven points and two blocks in the run.
Perry completed a traditional three-point play to open the second half and tie the score at 34-all. Consecutive buckets by Carter and Fleming put the Vikings back ahead, but the game stayed within two possessions the rest of the way. PSU tied the game four times, the last at 52-apiece on a three-point shot by Perry with 1:45 to play.
PSU missed its next three shots while Carter drained four free throws to put the Vikings up 56-52 with 33 seconds remaining. White made one of two free throws with 18 seconds on the clock, and junior Tiffany Lewis (Hillsboro, N.H.) made a layup for the Panthers with seven seconds left to account for the final score.
The Panthers played strong defense, limiting the Vikings to a 27 percent shooting clip.
Plymouth State wraps up the semester with a non-conference home game Saturday against Lasell College. Admission is free to fans that bring a small Christmas gift to be donated to teenage children in the community.
Salem State returns home to host the University of Southern Maine in a non-conference affair Saturday at 1:00 p.m.
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