Saturday, November 28, 2009

Oh, what a night

Saturday's recap

What rocked
LaKendra Washington's shooting touch - after scoring 19 points in her first four games combined, the Liberty freshman poured in 21 as Liberty dismantled Lafayette.

What reeked
Norfolk State's shooting touch - the weary Spartans (mis)fired away at a 20.5 percent clip against Samford. Then again, we've seen worse.

What almost happened
What looked like another abysmal night for Old Dominion might have turned into the confidence boost these young Lady Monarchs need. They trailed by 23, misfiring on their first 10 3s, but what a second half! ODU nearly pulled the upset after cutting it to two behind 24 apiece from Tia Lewis and Shadasia Green.

Say what?
"Hi You all! I am back on line after a trip to the Bahamas with the team. Many amazing stories to tell. The players and Ms. Fitz (academic coordinator Natalie Fitzgerald) rode out a storm on of all things a banana boat! We had a fire at pre game that could have burned down the hotel. China (Crosby) took a charge my bad got called for a block and ended up in the island hospital. We won the Championship and got a beautiful Conch shell trophy. We made a lot of memories and didn't have phones to get in the way. I got NO tan!" - Virginia coach Debbie Ryan via Twitter after the Cavaliers' successful trip to the Junkanoo Jam

The games

Louisville 82, Old Dominion 75: What looked like a tropical depression in Mexico (they lost to Syracuse by 33 on Thursday) for the Lady Monarchs took a turn in the second half of this one. ODU outscored the Cardinals by 10 in the second half and rallied from 23 down to within a basket. At 0-5, they could sure use a win, but they got the next best thing -- a lift and that's without star forward Jessica Canady, still healing a bad knee. A few made free throws might have made the difference -- ODU was 21 of 34 -- but even without the win, this second half gives coach Wendy Larry something to build on after a grueling November.

UConn 86, Richmond 37
: Geno wins No. 701 as Huskies look like they could score 700. Michael Shafer's plan was to force them to shoot from the outside and that's exactly what they did, burying 13 three pointers.

Liberty 90, Lafayette 55: The Lady Flames (5-0) continue to capitalize on a schedule perfectly suited to a team in transition - the complete opposite of the situation at Old Dominion.

Virginia Tech 82, Elon 46: Lindsay lights it up again - Hokies senior Lindsay Biggs notched a game-high 18 points and has now hit 17 of 30 3-pointers over her last four games.

Samford 70, Norfolk State 33: Forty minutes played, one NSU assist. But we saw this kind of result coming. For all of the Spartans' obvious improvement, this team is still not quite ready to play two games in a 19-hour span.

Longwood 72, Texas Pan-American 62: It was a short night for Heather Tobeck (eight minutes), but junior Krystal Garrison picked up the slack with 17, one shy of her career high.

Fresno State 66, Hampton 54
: Here's what hurts. Pirates hit no 3s. Bulldogs drain eight. Credit the Pirates for hanging in, though. The score was tied at 30 at the break.

William and Mary 69, Seattle 58: Winless Redbirds are no match for Tribe (3-2) behind the unstoppable Taysha Pye (22 points, 11 boards). Attacking William and Mary went to the line 17 more times than Seattle.

Sunday's action

Hofstra (3-2) vs. Richmond (4-1), WBCA Classic in Storrs, Conn., 2 p.m.
Pride lost a heartbreaker to Clemson on Saturday. Spiders got stomped by UConn. Who's got something left? We'll go with the Spiders. Richmond 71, Hofstra 65

James Madison (3-0) at Western Carolina (1-4), 2 p.m.
Think the Catamounts are going to stop Dawn Evans (27.3 ppg?) We don't. James Madison 81, Western Carolina 59

Howard (1-4) at Radford (0-3), 3 p.m.
Need a win? Send out for a MEAC team. OK, it's not quite that simple, especially when you're a rebuilding team like Radford. But the Highlanders are rested and at home. It's the perfect set-up for them to finally put the hammer down on someone. Radford 66, Howard 45

Morehead State (3-3) at Longwood (2-4), Lancer Classic, 2 p.m.
Eagles, winners of three of their last four who lost in OT to Gardner Webb on Saturday, would relish being the spoiler. Morehead State 77, Longwood 73

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