Late First Half Run Gives Eagles First Conference Win
“It was a very physical, hard-fought contest tonight. A lot of people came out ready to play,” said head coach Rusty Cram. “Our pre-season schedule had as much to do with tonight as anything. We played hard, aggressive and answered their runs. Overall, I thought Carolyn [Whitney], J’Lisia [Ogburn] and Krista [Tate] stood out from all those that played well tonight.”
An offensive combination from J'Lisia Ogburn (Dublin, Ga.) and Jessica Geiger (Stone Mountain, Ga.) put the Lady Eagles up 6-4 at the first media timeout in the first half. ASU’s offense up to then came solely from the hands of Sam Ramirez who drained a 3-pointer and connected on one free throw. Kelsey Sharkey pushed the Mountaineers in the lead, 9-6, draining one from beyond the arc, but Samantha Williams (Kingsport, Tenn.) responded with a 3-pointer, knotting the score at 9-all. ASU took a 5-point lead off an old-fashioned three-point play by Courtney Freeman with 8:10 remaining in the opening stanza. An 8-2 Georgia Southern run returned control to the Lady Eagles, 23-22, at the 4:30 marker - a lead GS never relinquished thereafter.
The run continued as Ogburn drained a couple buckets and Briana Scott (Dumfries, Va.), assisted by Ogburn, finished out the half with a lay-up in the paint. Closing out the opening frame on a 14-2 run, the Lady Eagles held a seven point lead, 29-22, at intermission.
Junior Jamie Navarro (Naples, Fla.) improved to a perfect 19-of-19 from the charity stripe this season, hitting two late in the first half, helping GSU to a 6-of-9 effort from the line. Meanwhile, ASU went a dismal 2-of-6 from the line. At the conclusion of the opening frame, Georgia Southern was led by Ogburn with seven points and five boards. ASU’s Ramirez led the offense with seven points, while Freeman and Ashlen Dewart led on the glass, each pulling down five rebounds. Shooting 40.0 percent from the floor in the first half, the Mountaineers were held to 26.7 percent shooting.
Georgia Southern continued to push its strong offense in the second half opening as the Lady Eagles held ASU to one field goal while widening its lead to 15 points, 39-24, within the first three minutes. The Mountaineers put together a 7-0 run to come within eight, 39-31, before Geiger hit a basket for a 10-point lead at the first media timeout. Ogburn returned a 10-point lead to Georgia Southern after ASU pulled to within six, producing a three-point play as Dewart fouled out for the Mountaineers with just over eight minutes of play remaining.
ASU pulled to within five points, 55-50, with a field goal and 3-pointer from Anna Freeman, but Georgia Southern held strong, re-opening a nine point lead on consecutive buckets from Krista Tate (Atlanta, Ga.) and Candice Ivy (Roswell, Ga.) with four minutes and change remaining. Anna Freeman hit her third trey of the game to pull ASU to within four points, 67-63. With 47.8 seconds left, the Mountaineers made it a one possession game as Chakeitha Weldon nailed a three-pointer, making the score 71-68. Whitney visited the charity stripe for the fifth time, connecting on both for a 73-68 final score.
Georgia Southern shot 48.3 percent in the second half, 44.4 percent overall, and 93.8 percent from the free throw line going 6-of-7 down the stretch in the second frame. The Lady Eagles went 21-of-25 from the free throw line, helped by Whitney’s 9-of-10 effort, while ASU was 8-of-21. Whitney and Ogburn tied for the game-high in scoring, each contributing 16 points and eight boards. Tate tallied double figures in scoring with 10 points and six rebounds.
ASU posted three players in double digits, led by Dewart and Ramirez, each with 14. Anna Freeman added 13. Dewart paced the Mountaineers on the glass, pulling down 10 rebounds. Overall, ASU won the edge on glass, 42-to-39, and recorded 15 steals.
Georgia Southern returns home for the first time since the season-opening game on November 13 on Saturday, December 5 with Elon. Tip between the conference schools is slated for 3 p.m. in Hanner Fieldhouse.
- Category: Women's Basketball
- Published on Wednesday, 02 December 2009 22:14