Her back feeling good, Faith Dupree showed how dangerous she can be for the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga women's basketball team Thursday night at McKenzie Arena.
In UTC's exhibition against Lee University, the 6-foot-3 Dupree helped lead a 17-4 run to start the second half as the Lady Mocs pulled away for a 61-42 win.
Dupree finished 7-of-12 from the field for a game-high 14 points in 19 minutes. During the deciding run, she scored six straight points. UTC led 26-24 after a lackluster first half, and the score was 43-28 after the Lady Mocs' Kylie Lambert hit a 3-point shot with 13:35 remaining.
"I had that first half to warm up and I think that was for everybody, to get our nerves shaken off," said Dupree, who missed some of the preseason with a recurring back injury.
Kayla Christopher, Ka'Vonne Towns and Meghan Downes hit two 3-pointers each and scored eight points for the Lady Mocs. Taylor Hall had five points, five rebounds, five steals and four assists.
The Lady Mocs, who open their season at the Roundhouse next Friday against No. 20 Tennessee, have made being aggressive on defense a priority this season. UTC had 18 steals and forced 27 turnovers against Lee.
UTC coach Wes Moore said he was unhappy with most of what his team did in the first half, but he liked the second, in which UTC got 12 steals and shot 46.4 percent from the field, including hitting six of eight 3s.
"The second half, we did a little bit more of what we wanted to do," Moore said. "We got in the passing lanes a little bit more and kind of dictated what the offense could do."
UTC was 9-of-33 for the game early in the second half. The Lady Mocs hit 11 of their next 20 shots to pull away for good.
Jenna Adams was busy for Lee with eight points and 13 rebounds.