King Scores Career-High as Southern Miss Tops Alcorn State
HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Jayla King led the Southern Miss Lady Eagles with a career-high 30 points to top the Lady Braves of Alcorn State 72-67 in the first game of the Lady Eagle Thanksgiving Classic.
“Jayla did a tremendous job of scoring the ball for us.” said Head Coach Joye Lee-McNelis. “Despite us making a lot of mental mistakes down the stretch, her performance was a positive.”
The Pensacola, Fla. native went 11-of-16 from the field tonight and went eight-of-10 from the charity stripe. She also dished out a career-high five assists. King topped her previous career-high of 27 points that she set against Mississippi Valley State during the 2015-2016 season.
“I knew when I was hitting the mid-post jumper that it was wide open and I felt like they weren’t guarding me,” King said. “I knew it was a close game so I had to get the ball and do something with it. I told coach to give me the ball. She asked me if I could score. I told her yes, so she said we’ll run the play.”
This is the senior’s seventh career game as the Lady Eagle’s leading scorer and only the third time she has scored 20 or more points. King is just the fourth player since the 2014-2015 season to score at least 30 points in a single game.
After scoring 16 points, Shonte Hailes has now eclipsed double-figuring scoring outputs in each game this season. The sophomore guard also was a perfect eight-of-eight from the free throw line.
“We’ve challenged Jayla and Shonte,” McNelis said. “Jayla and Shonte are two players that have to make it happen for us every game. These two have to have the ball in their hands for us to be successful.”
Southern Miss will see Alabama State tomorrow at 4 p.m. in the second game of the Lady Eagle Thanksgiving Classic. With the pregame show starting 30 minutes prior tip, fans can hear Josh West on the call on WFOR 1400 AM The Score, The Southern Miss Game Day App and CUSA.TV.