ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - Despite three scorers in double figures and a career night from sophomore forward Stephanie Taylor, the UCF women's basketball team could not hang on for the win Monday. The Knights (3-8) had a second-straight season-low output in their 53-49 loss to Presbyterian (6-6) at UCF Arena.
Taylor lit up the floor all night in her first start of the season with career highs in points (11), rebounds (10) and blocks (six). Taylor's six blocks are the most by an individual player in the Joi Williams era and ties for eighth in the UCF record book for a single-game performance.
The Knights enjoyed a 31-25 lead at the half thanks in part to an 8-1 run, capped at a 14-7 lead after Jackson took a charge, which led to an Erika Jones layup off an assist from Kayli Keough at the other end.
The night continued to look promising for UCF after the break when Sara Djassi swished a three on the first possession of the second half. But the Blue Hose continued to pester the Knights and managed to tie the game at 41 with 10 minutes remaining when Mariah Pietrowski laid one in.
The Knights knotted the game at 49 with 1:39 to go when Carter threaded a pass through the lane to Jackson on the far side for a quick layup, but Dria David responded on the next possession to give the lead to Presbyterian once more.
After forcing a shot clock violation with 25 seconds remaining, UCF hoped to connect on the last possession of the game. Following a timeout, Meghan Keough shot a running jumper near the elbow that clanked off the back of the rim.
Forced to foul, the Knights put Presbyterian at the free throw line, where David iced the game to steal the 53-49 win in the first meeting between to two squads.
UCF will have a quick turnaround as the Knights host South Alabama at 7 p.m. Wednesday. Fans who bring non-perishable food items to Wednesday's game for the Allstate food drive will receive free admission.