ORANGEBURG, S.C. – Ashley Fields scored her team's last five points and Deja Dickens fired in a career-high 24 points as the Claflin University Lady Panthers knocked off nationally ranked Virginia Union, 62-59, Thursday (Dec. 6) at Tullis Arena.
With the win, Claflin improved to 4-1 in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) and 6-4 overall.
Fields, who scored the Lady Panthers last five points, finished the game with a double-double of 15 points, 12 in the second half, and 10 rebounds.
Also scoring in double-figures for Claflin was Dashia Jackson with 14 points.
For the game, the Lady Panthers knocked down 10 three-pointers with Dickens contributing leading six to tie a career best. She previously had six in a 21-point performance against Shaw University (Nov. 24).
Virginia Union, which entered the contest ranked 5th in the D2SIDA Women’s Basketball National Poll and unbeaten, dropped to 8-1 overall and 0-1 in league play.
Shareka McNeill led Virginia Union with 19 points.
In the fourth quarter, the lead changed hand several times until Shakarri Mack put Claflin up for good at 57-56 with 1:41 left. The Lady Panthers held off Virginia Union down the stretch by scoring five of the last eight points.
Claflin outscored Virginia Union 19-17 in the quarter.
The game was tied twice early in the third quarter, before Rejoice Spivey hit a three-pointer at the 5:02 mark to put Virginia Union ahead at 34-31.
Virginia Union increased its lead to 42-33 at the 2:33 mark, only to see the Lady Panthers pull to within 42-41 by the end the end of the quarter.
“It was a great win for our program,” head coach Revonda Whitely said. “Our ladies played tough and willed the win. Virginia Union is a great program and I am a big fan of Coach Gilbert.” Whitley continued, “What she does with her team and program is exceptional, so to win against that caliber of a team is definitely a huge win for the Claflin Women’s Basketball Program.”