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In this Dec. 29, 2019, staff file photo, UTC guard Lakelyn Bouldin (33) handles the ball against Ohio at McKenzie Arena on the campus of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. / Staff photo by C.B. Schmelter

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga women's basketball team broke an 11-game losing streak as Lakelyn Bouldin scored a game-high 22 points in a 59-52 win in its Southern Conference opener at Western Carolina Thursday night.

Bouldin's steal, subsequent layup and three-point play gave UTC (2-13) a 51-45 lead with 2:30 to play. The lead was three when Western leading scorer Jewel Smalls missed a potential tying 3-pointer, with UTC's Abbey Cornelius rebounding and adding a pair of free throws for a five-point advantage.

Andrea Martin-Ruiz later pulled the Lady Catamounts within three with a jump shot, but Bouldin, a nearly 90% free-throw shooter who finished 9-of-10 from the foul line, made four freebies in the final 20 seconds to secure the win.

Bouldin also had five rebounds and three steals, while Bria Dial added 12 points and five steals and Nakeia Burks 11 points and four assists for the Mocs. Lauren LaPlant and Martin-Ruiz led Western Carolina (3-13, 0-1) with 15 points apiece. Smalls, averaging 15 points per game, was held to five points on 2-of-11 shooting.

Thursday's win is the 11th consecutive win over Western Carolina for the Mocs, who will play at UNC Greensboro on Saturday at 4.

Contact Lindsey Young at lyoung@timesfreepress.com or at 423-757-6296; follow on Twitter @youngsports22.

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