Baker’s 31 Leads Lady Camels Past Asheville 74-55

Tonisha Baker (photo by Will Bratton)
Tonisha Baker (photo by Will Bratton)

ASHEVILLE, N.C.-Tonisha Baker poured in a career-high 31 points to lead Campbell over UNC Asheville 74-55 in Big South women's basketball action Friday night at the Justice Center. 

Campbell improves to 17-11 overall and 10-7 in Big South play with its fifth win in six games. Asheville 7-21 on the season and 3-14 in conference contests with its 10th consecutive loss.

Baker, a junior guard from High Point, N.C., tallied her career night on 13-of-19 shooting, making her only attempt from beyond the arc. Baker also added four points from the free throw line in the win. The junior's 31 points mark the 43rd time in school history a player has registered 30 or more, while Baker is the 10th Lady Camel to ever post multiple 30 point games. Baker's previous career-best of 30 came in last season's 98-70 win over USC Upstate on Feb. 26, 2011.

Baker, coming into the game with 990 career points, also surpassed 1,000 career points in the win, becoming the 16th player in Lady Camel history to surpass the milestone.

The junior added 10 rebounds, marking her team-high seventh double-double of the season, and the 13th by a Lady Camel this season, with four assists and three steals.

Jazmine Cooper chipped in eight points with two blocks, while Amanda O'Neill scored seven with three boards. Sophomore center Heather Beadle also scored eight, a career-high, adding two rebounds and a pair of assists. Roslyn Presley recorded six points, while Kiera Gaines added five.

Senior guard Kate Cloxton dished out eight assists in the win. Cloxton has tallied 11 career games with eight or more assists, with Campbell going 9-2 in those outings.

Tacey Trammel paced Asheville with 13 points, while Shonese Jones scored 12. Lindsey Thompson added 11 points with four rebounds and four assists. Kelli Riles, meanwhile, collected nine points with a game-high 16 rebounds in the loss.

After Tonisha Baker scored nine of the Lady Camels' first 11 in the game's first four minutes, Asheville notched a 10-2 run, taking a 22-13 lead at the 13:10 mark on a Shonese Jones jumper.

With Campbell still trailing by nine, 24-15, at the 9:40 mark, Heather Beadle's baseline jumper started a 5-0 spurt for the Lady Camels to bring CU within four. With 3:38 to play in the half, Baker put Campbell ahead 25-24 with a breakaway steal and layup.

Campbell ended the half on a 20-3 run, taking a 35-27 lead into the break, starting with Beadle's jumper at the 9:40 mark.

In the second frame, holding a seven point lead at 49-42 with 13:28 to play, Campbell produced another decisive run, posting a 17-1 clip, capped by a Kiera Gaines layup with 7:14 remaining, taking a 66-43 lead.

The Lady Camels shot 50.8 percent for the game, hitting 31-of-61 attempts from the floor. CU has now posted five 50 percent shooting games, going undefeated in those outings. Campbell collected 21 points off 19 Asheville turnovers.

The Lady Camels will close out the regular season on Monday, March 5 at Gardner-Webb. The Big South Women's Basketball Championships will begin on March 9 at High Point.