The Chattanooga women’s basketball team escaped with yet another hard-fought Southern Conference victory, holding on for 59-55 victory over visiting Appalachian State on Saturday at McKenzie Arena.

The Lady Mocs (16-3, 9-1 SoCon), who held on to the league’s top spot with the narrow win, led by as much as 15 early in the second half, but the Mountaineers used a 14-1 run to tie things up at the 7:31 mark. 

ASU (12-4, 6-4), which had its five-game winning streak snapped, outscored UTC 26-14 in the final 15:23, and actually took the lead after a pair free-throws from Anna Freeman. UTC closed things out with a 6-0 run, though, including four free-throws just junior Taylor Hall and senior Kayla Christopher to capture the 59-55 victory.

“I thought it was a team win; a gutsy win,” Chattanooga coach Wes Moore said. “It wasn’t always pretty. We struggled offensively in the second half, and it’s going to be good to have a couple days of practice this where we aren’t preparing for an opponent. We can focus on what we do and get better.”

Hall and junior Ashlen Dewart each finished with double-doubles Saturday. Hall scored a game-high 15 points to go with her 11 rebounds, while Dewart went for 12 and 12 against her former team – her third double-double of the season. 

“I knew this would be a physical game with how they play,” Dewart said. “They play hard and rough, but that is usually how it is in the post. That’s one thing we knew coming into the game. We knew it was going to be a battle and I thought we handled it pretty well.”

Christopher and senior Kylie Lambert each finished with 11 points for the Lady Mocs, who led for much of the first half, and held a 31-24 advantage at the break.

Appalachian State’s Katie Mallow and Maryah Sydnor both chipped in 12 points to lead the Lady Mountaineers, who outscored UTC 30-24 in the paint.

The Lady Mocs return to action next with a trip to Furman on Saturday.