ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — The Chattanooga Lady Mocs left no doubt about the best team in the Southern Conference. Now first-year coach Jim Foster wants to take it a step further.
"We're a good team," Foster said. "It's about time we start showing folks just how good."
The Lady Mocs will get that chance in the NCAA tournament.
Alex Black scored 22 points, and Chattanooga beat Davidson 71-45 on Monday for its second straight Southern Conference tournament championship and sixth in the last nine years.
The Lady Mocs (29-3), ranked just outside The Associated Press Top 25, have won 24 in a row. They could be one tough out in the NCAA tournament.
Unlike a year ago when the Lady Mocs held on to beat Davidson 64-63 in the conference final, they were dominant almost from the start.
Taylor Hall, the tournament's Most Outstanding Player, added 12 points and seven rebounds as the Lady Mocs held a double-digit lead for most of the game. Reserves Faith Dupree and Ka'Vonne Towns each had 10 points.
Laura Murray finished with 17 points, converting a late layup to finish her career as Davidson's leading scorer with 1,880 points. Dakota Dukes added 14 points for Davidson (16-16), which shot just 33 percent from the field.
"We played with the intensity and intelligence needed to win something like this," Foster said.
Foster said his team committed to playing more aggressive defense about 10 or 12 games ago, and it paid off in the championship. Chattanooga's pressure defense was a factor, leading to 21 points off turnovers.
"We started working on that more diligently and getting to a point where we could be more aggressive," Foster said.
Black provided the spark on the other end.
She was 9 of 13 from field, repeatedly knocking down pull-up jumpers off the drive.
"We couldn't control Alex Black," Davidson coach Michele Savage said. "We went from zone to man and just couldn't get stops down the stretch when we needed to. She was the difference for them tonight."
Said Black: "I just wanted to come out really focused and get in my zone and that's what I was able to do."
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