Women's Basketball Rolls Up 85 Points In Win Over Seton Hall
Nov. 27, 2010
FREEPORT, Bahamas - The Auburn women's basketball team (2-4) rolled up a season-high 85 points on Seton Hall (3-4), pulling out the 85-51 consolation-round victory over the Pirates at the Junkanoo Jam. Alli Smalley led a pack of four Tigers in double figures with 15 points.
"We came out with some good energy and it was nice to see it," said Auburn head coach Nell Fortner. "We talked about it and it is something we have to do. We had great energy. I don't know if it was the change in the starting lineup or just us talking about it, but it is the way we need to play every time out."
Auburn came out with a new lineup against Seton Hall, giving freshmen Courtney Strain and Tyrese Tanner their first collegiate starts. Joining them was Blanche Alverson, Jordan Greenleaf and Alli Smalley.
Riding a four-game losing streak coming into the game, Fortner conducted a spirited shootaround Saturday morning, focusing on the defensive end of the floor. Auburn scored 36 of its 85 points off turnovers, tallying 12 steals while forcing 31 Seton Hall turnovers in the game. Fortner sai
"We got after it this morning," said Fortner. "We have to get back to some basic fundamentals and get after people defensively. We put all our energy in the defensive end and it paid off for us because we got a lot of baskets off our transition."
Following Smalley was junior Morgan Jennings with 14 points on 7-of-7 shooting. She also tallied two steals and four rebounds in the game.
"Morgan is so quick and powerful," said Fortner. "She gets on the board and does so much. I thought she had a really nice game."
Also scoring in double figures was Blanche Alverson and Morgan Toles with 12 points each. Toles also dished out four assists while picking a team-high four steals. Freshman Jassany Williams came off the bench for eight points, pulling down a team-high seven rebounds with two blocked shots.
After leading 6-5 early in the game, Auburn took off on a 13-3 run over a three-minute stretch, building a double-digit lead at 19-8. The Pirates scored five of the next seven points to cut the lead to eight, but that is as close as Seton Hall would come.
The Tigers went on to lead by as many as 16 points in the first half with Smalley scoring 10 of her 15 points in the opening period. Seton Hall's Tiffani Blackman got a late layup to cut Auburn's lead to 14 at the half, 42-28.
Auburn did not let down as the second half started, coming out to score the first 11 points of the half to take a 25-point lead at 53-28. Alverson scored five of the 11 points while Jennings added four.
"It was just as important to come out in the second half with that kind of intensity we had in the first half," said Fortner. "They listened, they responded well and hopefully we can keep that going."
The Tigers took their largest lead of the game after a pair of Strain free throws gave Auburn am 82-40 lead with 2:58 left in the game. Seton Hall tallied only five field goals in the second half with three of them coming in the final 2:30. With Auburn holding on to an 85-48 lead, Seton Hall's Brittany Morris hit a half-court buzzer-beater to make the final score 85-51.
All 12 active Tigers played and scored in the win over the Pirates. Auburn also notched 16 assists in the game, compared to seven from Seton Hall.
"We had a great ball movement," said Fortner. "There were a few times it was picture perfect. We were very team-oriented and looking for the best shot on the floor."
Auburn shot better than 50 percent for the first time this season, shooting 53.1 Percent (34-of-64) from the field. The Tigers also held Seton Hall to 31.4 percent shooting in the game.
Ka-Deidre Simmons and Alexandra Maseko led the Pirates with eight points each. Tajay Ashmeade pulled down a game-high nine rebounds.
Auburn will return to the court at 6 p.m., Thursday as the Tigers open a two-game homestand with in-state rival South Alabama. The Jaguars are 3-3 on the season, following a 66-55 win over Maine on Saturday.
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