Sunday, January 9, 2011

Old Dominion routs James Madison; VCU keeps rolling

Kquanise Byrd, ODU    

*Our hat's off to our Player of the Day, Kquanise Byrd, who shot 4-of-6 from the field and 7-of-8 from the line for a career-high 16 points. Just as significant, she chased Dawn Evans all day, keeping the nation's leading scorer from going off.

*Hurt instills more hurt on opponents, as VCU continues to shine in conference play with a 3-0 mark.

*ACC headaches for Virginia and Tech, both of whom fell today to foes from Florida.

Sunday's results:

Old Dominion 71, James Madison 55:
OK, we admitted we didn't see this, though we were tempted to go with ODU (forty wet noodle lashes for us). In addition to scoring a career-high 16 points, Lady Monarch senior Kquanise Byrd held Dawn Evans in check. Evans, who came in averaging an NCAA-best 25.8 ppg, was held to 17 on 6-of-26 shooting. JMU post Lauren Jimenez also did not play due to illness. The Lady Monarchs took advantage with a marvelous effort on the boards that included  12 from Tia Lewis, 11 from Jackie Cook, nine from Jasmine Parker and seven from Shadasia Green. JMU shot an abysmal 28 percent, as Evans' only real help came from Tarik Hislop (10 points). Jimenez or not, you have to be impressed by this Lady Monarch effort against the team that has been the most successful against them in the CAA.

VCU 64, George Mason 46: 
While we could talk about Courtney Hurt again (17 points, 7 rebounds), let's give kudos to the VCU defense. "I think we probably played one of our best games defensively today, and maybe one of our best all-around games of the season," said VCU coach Beth Cunningham. The Rams (8-5, 3-0) committed just six turnovers and scored the final 16 points of the first half. The 46 points was a season-low for Ram opponents.

Northeastern 69, William and Mary 56:
Afreyea Tolbert posted a team-best and career-high 18 points while Jamie Conroy gathered a career-best 10 rebounds to power the Huskies, who limited the Tribe (1-12, 0-3) to 18 second-half points. W&M got 20 from Taysha Pye and 14 from Emily Correal, but the Huskies won this by shooting 46 percent and draining eight treys.

Cornell 69, Longwood 65: 
So close for the Lancers, who impressed us with a heckuva rally on the road. Down by as many as eight in the second half, Longwood tied things at 65 with 40 seconds left. A putback from Alyson DiMagno restored the lead for the Big Red, though Krystal Garrison had a chance to tie it but turned the ball over. Cornell sealed it with free throws, spoiling an inspired effort by Longwood (3-11), led by Garrison's 20.

Florida State 71, Virginia 61:
A tough date on the road means the Cavaliers (10-7, 0-2) are still seeking their first ACC win. FSU (14-3, 2-0)  limited the Cavs to a season-low 19 points in the first half, and Virginia only closed to within five in the second. One encouraging sign was China Crosby scoring a season-best eight points. Life in the ACC is never easy, but just what Virginia needs coming up next: a road game. Cavs play Georgia Tech on Thursday.

Miami 69, Virginia Tech 56:
Speaking of tough times in the ACC, the Hokies didn't have the firepower to contend with the Hurricanes. “We were able to hold them to 15 below their average, but we were struggling to find ways to put the ball in the basket," said Tech coach Beth Dunkenberger. "We’ve got to find more points out there. You’re not going to beat anyone in the ACC scoring 56 points.”  Tech trailed by one with 16:08 left, but a 9-0 Miami run put this one out of reach.

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