HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Southern Miss got out to an early lead and never looked back, cruising to an 83-61 win over New Orleans Saturday afternoon.
The Lady Eagles (9-2) held a 44-27 lead at the half then outscored the Privateers 39-34 in the second half to secure the comfortable win.
"We came out and played well for the first 30 minutes," Coach Joye Lee-McNelis said. "Around the nine-minute mark, we kind of fell apart and lost focus. We didn't finish strong."
Southern Miss more than doubled the Privateers' rebound total, pulling 49 rebounds to New Orleans' 24, and outscored the visiting team 42-20 in the paint.
Four Lady Eagles reached double-figure scoring on the night as the team shot a collective 49.2 percent from the field and 54.5 percent from three-point range.
Junior forward Tamara Jones logged a 15-point, 13-round double-double on a night during which she also accounted for four assists, two steals and a block.
Senior point guard Jamierra Faulkner scored a game-high 18 points to go along with six assists, three steals and a pair of blocks.
Freshman center Ashley Folsom had a strong game and scored 13 points while pulling down eight rebounds and making one block.
Junior forward Markia Nix accounted for 11 points, three rebounds and three assists. New Orleans, which fell to 0-10, had three players register double-figure points.
"It's been the Tamara Jones and Jamierra Faulkner show and they have been our steedy-eddie," McNelis said. "I think that's very important, but we have other players that are coming along. We had four players in double figures today."
Forward Melissa Jensen was the Privateers' top performer with 16 points to go along with seven rebounds and two assists. Octavia Wilson added 12 points and Danielle Davis 10 for New Orleans.
It was the Lady Eagles' last game prior to the Christmas holiday. Southern Miss returns to action Dec. 29th with a 2 p.m. home showdown against Nicholls State.
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