Jan. 13, 2008
DALLAS, Texas - SMU used an 11-0 run midway through the first half, jumping out to a double-digit lead to knock off Southern Miss, 85-72.
Kendra Reed led the way for Southern Miss (10-6, 1-2) with a game-high 19 points with Pauline Love recording her 11th double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds. Delisha Wills led SMU (12-4, 2-1) with 18 points with Janielle Dodds and Jillian Samuels scoring 17 points apiece.
"You have to give SMU credit because they return every player from last year," coach Joye Lee-McNelis said. "They were very seasoned. I thought we got off to a decent start. We were able to make some things happen. When they made their run, I believe this young team began to struggle. I think we got frustrated with ourselves, we got frustrated with each other. We didn't play well as a team."
SMU opened the game scoring four quick points before Southern Miss scored its first basket at the 17:59 mark. From there, both teams went back-and-forth. The Lady Eagles finally tied the game at 14-14 all.
Each team traded baskets over the next three minutes before SMU then scored 11 unanswered points, taking a 31-18 lead.
Southern Miss had to go to the bench early, when the Lady Eagles found themselves in foul trouble. SMU took full advantage from the free throw line, connecting on 16-of-19 in the first half.
SMU maintained the lead the remainder of the half, however, Southern Miss was able to get the lead below double-digits on two occasions. SMU ended the half with two free throws and took a 45-35 lead into the half.
SMU came out the second half, hitting on all cylinders and pushing the lead to 17 points, 56-39, at the 16:39 mark. The Mustangs continued to build on that lead and led by as many as 26 points with 8:24 remaining.
Southern Miss managed to make a late run, cutting the final lead to 13 points, 85-72.
Both teams finished the game shooting identical percentages, 45.2, from the field. The difference came at the free throw line with SMU making 22-of-29, while Southern Miss was 10-of-11. SMU also won the battle of the boards, 37-34. The Mustangs scored 24 points off 17 Southern Miss miscues.
Southern Miss returns to action on Thursday, when the Lady Eagles host Rice at 7 p.m.