SBC Tournament Quarterfinal Results

March 8, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Women's · Comment 

The South Alabama Lady Jaguars advanced to the semifinals of the Sun Belt Tournament on a strong defensive performance against Troy on Saturday. Their next opponent is the top seeded MTSU Women at 12:30pm on Monday.

Troy would take the early lead by as much as four points two times in the first nine minutes of the game but USA would take the lead for the first time in the game at the 11:06 mark of the first half. But USA’s lead would be short lived when Troy connected on a jumper less than a minute later.

USA would take the lead again when Tashley Gaines was fouled by Kirsten Smith and connected on both of her foul shots. This would spur the beginning of an 11-2 run by USA over the next four plus minutes to take a seven point advantage 20-13.

USA’s largest lead of eight points would come at the 2:53 mark of the first half and would go into the locker room with a seven point lead at 28-21.

The second half would begin with nearly two minutes of scoreless play with USA missing three shots and blocking three shots on the defensive end. USA would extend their lead to 13 points with a 7-1 run in about a minute and a half.

Troy could not cut the USA lead any closer than nine points in the second half. USA cruised to their 13 point point victory over the final minutes, winning 52-39.

Troy’s Kylie Morrissy would lead all scorers with 18 points. Alyce Shearing would be the only other Trojan to score double digits with 12 points and 11 rebounds for a double-double.

USA also had a pair of double digit scorers with both Shakira Nettles and Jessica Starling scoring 13 points each. Shaniece Brunner added 10 rebounds. Tashley Gaines also added four blocks for the majority of USA’s seven blocks for the game.

In other action Saturday:
Middle Tennessee State 82 – New Orleans 47
Arkansas-Little Rock 52 – Louisiana-Monroe 40
Denver 67 – North Texas 63

The match-ups for Monday:
#5 USA vs #1 MTSU at 12:30pm
#3 Denver vs #2 UALR at 3:00PM

Lady Jags Lose In Overtime On Last Second Shot

February 9, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Women's · Comment 

The Jaguars lost a close, heartbreaking game with a layup with 0.7 seconds left in the overtime period. Jessica Starling put up a career high in points and Ra’Shawna Sippio recorded her eighth double-double in nine games in the tough loss.

The Jags jumped out to a great start scoring seven straight points while holding WKU scoreless in the first give minutes of the first half. The Hilltoppers were cold from the floor going 0 for 9 during that stretch. USA would pull out to a 19-11 lead before WKU went on a 11-0 streak to end the first half an go into the locker room with a 22-19 lead. USA would go 0 for 7 during that streak at the end of the first half.

WKU pulled ahead by five by making a shot on their first possession of the second half, however USA would answer back with a 16-2 in the next four minutes, with 11-0 run to start it. This lead to the jags largest lead of nine points, 35-26.

Near the halfway mark of the second half, the Jaguars lead was cut down to seven at 44-37 but WKU would quickly tie the game after scoring the next seven points. WKU would gain their largest lead of the second half, 52-48, with less than five minutes to go in the second half. However USA would take the lead back less than a minute later.

USA had the lead 57-56 and coming out of a time out when USA’s Sippio scored an uncontested layup under the basket from a Shakira Nettles’ pass. A stop on the defensive end with seven seconds remaining lead to a foul by WKU sending Morriah Smith to the free-throw line. She could not convert the first of a one-and-one to seal the win.

WKU grabbed the rebound and handed the ball off to McNear where she hit a 3-pointer from the left wing to tie the game up at 59 forcing overtime.

With 32 seconds left in the overtime period, WKU had a four point lead at 66-62 when Jessica Starling sunk a 3-pointer drawing the lead to one point. USA would call a 30 second timeout with 13 seconds left. Vontrice Dennis would foul sending Arnika Brown to the foul line with 12 seconds left in overtime. Brown misses the first but makes the second to extend WKU’s lead to two points, 67-65.

Freshmen Tashly Gaines subbed in for Dennis and she was fouled with 6.7 seconds left. Gaines made both shots to tie the game with 6.7 seconds left. McNear would take the inbounds pass and drove the length of the court and made a layup with 0.7 seconds left in the overtime period sealing the victory. This last second basket was her second last second, game changing shot of the game. She sunk the 3-pointer with 0.4 seconds left in the second half to send the game into overtime.

Jessica Starling scored a career hight 27 points on 9 of 19 shooting with 7-14 from outside the arch and hitting both attempts at free-throws. Ra’Shawna Sippio scored 10 and came away with 12 rebounds for her eight double-double of the season.

Amy McNear lead the hilltoppers with 20 points on 6 of 17 shooting while hitting 7 of 8 from the charity stripe and hitting her only 3-point attempt to send the game into overtime. Arnika Brown scored 19 and came away with 11 rebounds for a double-double. Kenzie Rich added 13 points as well.

For the game USA was 24-64 from the floor, 9-25 from 3-point range and 10-15 from the free-throw line. WKU was 19-65 from the floor and 3-7 from 3-point range but the telling stat was WKU going 28-34 from the free throw line. They went to the line 19 more times than the Jags. Additionally WKU outscored USA in both points off turnovers 19-7 and second change points 19-9.

USA (16-8, 7-6 SBC) will host Florida International Wednesday with tip-off scheduled for 7pm in the Mitchell Center.

Come out and support your JAGS!!!!

Women’s Basketball Roundup 2009-02-03

February 3, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

The lady jags have gone 2-2 over the last four games since I last wrote about them on this site. Thus its time for a Lady Jag Roundup.

On January 21st the Jags hosted the SBC west division leading University of Arkansas Little Rock at the Mitchell Center. But despite Ra’Shawna Sippio’s third straight double-double USA fell 53-44.

Sippio tied a career high in scoring with 22 points and added 10 rebounds. She was the only Jag in double digits for the game. She added three blocked shots for the game as well. Chastity Reed of UALR lead all scorers with 28 points and 13 rebounds while Anshel Cooper chipped in with 11 points as well.

While USA came into the game with the second best average of 8.2 3-pointers per game, they were held to a mere 2-15 from outside the arc. Combined with 32% shooting from the floorand 71% from the free-throw line, it was obviously a long night for the Lady Jags.

On January 24th the Lady Jags traveled to Lafayette Louisiana to take on the Ragin’ Cajuns. A really good start in the first half helped the Lady Jags to come out with their 14th victory of the season and 5th in the Sun Belt Conference.

In the first half the Jags outshot ULL 57%-30% from the floor, 47%-17% from 3-point range but missed both free-throw attempts while ULL connected on 6 of 8 attempts.

The second half was even with the Jags hitting 9-23 from the floor, 2-12 from 3-point range and 5-12 from the free-throw line. While ULL went 12-30 from the floor, 3-8 from 3-point range and 2-3 from the free-throw line. So the 8  point lead at halftime led to a 14 point win.

The Lady Jags had four in double digits scoring. Shakira Nettles led the way with 18. Ra’Shawna Sippio added 13 points and 12 rebounds for yet another double-double. Shaniece Brunner and Jessica Starling both scored 11 points.

On January 29th the Lady Jags traveled to Denver Colorado to take on the Pioneers at Magness Arena. However another Ra’Shawna Sippio double-double could not lead the Jags to a win in overtime, 61-56.

Both teams were scoreless for the first two and a half minutes of overtime until Denver University scored. They then took a 60-53 lead on two consecutive buckets before Karina Sproal got USA on the board with three free throws.  However USA could not come up with baskets in the closing seconds to lose by six.

Ra’Shawna Sippio lead all scorers with 21 points and 10 rebounds but no other Jag scored in double digits for the game. Denver had two double digit scorers: Britteni Rice with 18 and Ketlyn Murdoch with 11.

However the telling stats are from overtime. Denver going 3-6 from the floor, 1-2 from 3-point range and 1-2 from the free throw line while USA went 0-6 from the floor, no attempts from outside the arc and 3-3 on free throws.

On January 31st the Lady Jags hosted UNO in the second half of a double header at the Mitchell Center. The Jags captured their 15th victory of the season in their 68-60 victory.

Shakira Nettles lead all scorers with 23 points on 8-15 shooting from the floor while going 5-9 from 3-point range and 2-2 from the free-throw line. Ra’Shawna Sippio scored 14 with 10 rebounds for her sixth straight double-double. Morriah Smith and Jessica Starling both added 11 points.

UNO’s Jada Frazier scored 17 points, Brittany Helm added 14 and Cookie Johnson chipped in with 11 in the loss.

The lady Jags will host North Texas Wednesday night with tip-off scheduled for 7:05pm at the Mitchell Center.

Come out and support the Jaguars!

Lady Jags Win On Last Second Free-Throws By Jessica Starling

January 18, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Women's · Comment 

Game winning free throws with a mere 3.6 seconds left in the game seals the win for the Lady Jaguars over Arkansas State. The Jags record improves to 13-5 and 4-3 in the SBC while Arkansas State falls to 9-9 and 3-4 in the SBC.

USA had a hot start to open the half. Hitting six of their first ten shots from the floor while Nettles and Starling led the way combining to score 12 of the first 17 points for USA putting them out in front 17-12 with 13:37 left in the first half.

But Arkansas State would take the lead a few minutes later  and it would be traded back an forth a few times until ASU would make their last basket of the first half at the 5:54 mark. USA would take advantage and close out the half on a 13-1 run to end the half with the Jaguars leading 36-26.

USA would continue the momentum from the end of the first half through the first four minutes of the second half by outscoring ASU 11-5 over that stretch. With 12:05 left in the second half the Jaguar lead would swell to 55-37 but ASU would not give up.

ASU’s Smith, Jefferson and Taylor would combine to score 24 of the their teams 30 points over the final 12 minutes of the game. With USA holding a 10 point lead with less than 3 minutes left in the game, ASU would score 11 unanswered points in a minute and a half putting ASU ahead 66-65.

ASU’s Jefferson was fouled with 25 seconds left and sunk both free throws to give them a one point advantage. USA’s ensuing possession saw a jump ball call when the ball was tied up. The Lady Jags had the possession arrow and thus retained the ball. On the inbounds play, Starling was held  which sent her to the line with a one-and-one opportunity with 3.6 seconds left. She sunk both attempts. Arkansas State inbounded the ball and their half court shot would not fall giving the Jaguars the win.

Shakira Nettles would lead all scorers with 27 on 11-17 shooting and 4-6 from outside the arc and sinking one of two free-throw attempts. Ra’Shawna Sippio would chip in 11 points and 10 rebounds for a double-double. Jessica Starling would score 13 on 3-8 shooting and 1-4 from 3-point range and hitting all six free-throw shots, including the final two to win the game for the Jaguars. Sarda Peterson would play five minutes, seeing her first action since her ankle injury against MTSU.

Ebonie Jefferson would lead Arkansas State with 21 points on 7-10 shooting and 7-9 from the free throw line. Veronica Smith would add 14 and Jazmine Taylor would score 12 for the Red Wolves.

The Jaguars will be in action again when they host the Western Division leader UALR on Wednesday, January 21st with tip-off scheduled for 7:05pm.

Lady Jags End Three Game Losing Streak

January 15, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

The University of South Alabama Lady Jags end their losing streak at three games, defeating the Troy Trojans 68-60. The Jaguars record improves to 12-5 (3-3 SBC) while Troy falls to 8-8 on the season and 3-3 in the Sun Belt Conference.

In contrast with the last few games, the Lady Jags got off to a good start to match their opponent. For the first 11 minutes of the first half both teams kept it close until Shakria Nettles broke the 17-17 tie and started a 7-2 run for the Jags. It led to USA opening up their largest lead of the half, 26-19. Troy would battle back to pull within three point at halftime, 28-25.

The Trojans would come out and score four points quickly in to begin the second half taking the lead at 29-28. Ra’Shawna Sippio would put the Jags on her back and score the next 11 points to retake the lead 41-36 with under 15 minutes to go.

The Trojans would then score 11 points unanswered over a two and a half minute span and retaking the lead from USA.

USA would then start another run of their own going on a 10-0 run, retaking the lead once again for the Jags at 51-47.

Troy, not giving up, battled back again to retake the lead  for what would be their final time at 54-53. USA would close out the game with a 15-6 run and the Jaguar defense would hold strong only allowing Troy to shoot 2-15 over the that run.

Ra’Shawna Sippio would lead the Jags in scoring with 22 points on 9-19 shooting and hitting half of her 8 shots from the charity stripe. She would also come down with 11 rebounds to achieve her fifth double-double of her career.

Shakira Nettles and Jessica Starling would be the only other jags in double digits. Nettles would score 16 points on 6-12 shooting, going 3-7 from 3-point range and hitting one of her two free-throw attempts. Jessica Starling scored 12 points on 4-7 shooting while going 2-5 from outside the arc and hitting both of her two free-throw attempts.

The Trojans’ Kylie Morrissy would lead all scorers with 28 points going 10-22 and hitting 1-3 3-point attempts but hitting all 7 free-throw attempts. Donette McNair would score 9 points but would come down with 15 rebounds, 10 of them on the defensive side.

USA scored 32 points in the paint compared to Troy’s 22. USA would also out-shoot Troy 44%-33% for the game and 35%-31% from 3-point range. But Troy would hit 9-10 from the free-throw line while USA struggled hitting only 9-16.

The Lady Jaguars will play next when they visit Arkansas State on Sunday with tip-off scheduled for 2:05pm.

Lady Jags Fall To Louisiana-Monroe 67-58

January 11, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Women's · Comment 

The Lady Jags played hard in the second half to cut the lead from 16 points to a single point but ULM proved to have too much left in the tank and won the game 67-58.

The Jags came out and struggled from the field for most of the first half and would only hit three of its first 13 shots. But with about eight and a half minutes left in the first half, the Jags would pull within three points when Jessica Starling would be fouled while shooting a 3-pointer. She would hit two of the three foul shots and those would prove to the their only points for the next four minutes. ULM would take advantage and go on a 13-2 run that would finally end with a Karina Sproal layup with just under four and a half minutes left.

Siedah Banks and Jessica Starling would help to pull the Lady Jags within nine points but would be stretched back out to 11 at halftime, 33-22.

The second half started off like the first half started, slow like molassas. ULM would take advantage and increase their lead in the first 3:15 of the second half to 41-25, a 16 point lead. But Nettles would awaken from her slump where she was held without a field goal against MTSU and for the first 20 minutes of the ULM game. She would hit two 3-pointers in the first six minutes of the second half and back-to-back ones with less than 14 to go to help USA close the gap to 41-31.

Both teams would trade a few shots over the next few minutes to again increase the lead to 13 at 46-33 with under nine and a half minutes to go. This is when the Lady Jaguars started to make their run. A 15-5 run over about a five minute stretch would would pull USA within 3 at 51-48 with under five minutes to go. A layup by Jessica Starling would then close the gap further to a single point, 51-50.

But ULM would outscore the Jags 16-8 the rest of the way with most of it coming from foul shots when USA was forced to foul.

Coach Pietre was quoted saying, “There are peaks and valleys in a season and we are definitely in a valley right now….we couldn’t make the plays we had to make to go ahead and finish it off once we got it to one possession.”

Jessica Starling would lead USA in scoring with 18 on 5-15 shooting and going 3-8 from outside the arc. The only other double digit scorer for USA was Shakira Nettles with 14 on 5-14 shooting while going 4-6 from 3-point range.

ULM had three to score in double digits, Lottie Moore would lead all in scoring with 21 on 6-17 shooting with 1-3 from 3-point range and 8-15 from the free-throw line. next was Ashley Wallis with 19 on 7-8 shooting and hitting all five free-throws. Then Jesse Carrier would score 11 on 1-8 shooting and going 1-3 from 3-point range but would hit all eight free-throw attemps.

USA would go on to shoot an abysmal 29% for the game, hitting only 24% in the first half. While ULM would shoot 37% for the game and 39% for the first half. ULM would also hit 73% of their free-throw attempts, having 25 attempts in the second half alone.

The other statistical categories were a dead heat between the two teams: Pts in the paint ULM 20, USA 18; Pts off turnovers USA 14, ULM 11; 2nd chance points USA 14, ULM 12; Fast break pts USA 4, ULM 0; Bench pts USA 8, ULM 5. Rebounds ULM 48, USA 42.

The Lady Jags will be in action again on Wednesday, January 14th when it hosts Troy, their in-state rival. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:05pm at the Mitchell Center.

Come out and support your Jags! Bleed it red!

Lady Jags Fall At Home For First Time This Season

January 6, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Men's · Comment 

The USA Lady Jags would jump out to a quick lead making the first basket but that would be their only lead of the game, falling to the Lady Blue Raiders of Middle Tennessee State 80-57. This loss puts the Lady Jags at 11-4 for the season and 2-2 in the Sun Belt Conference.

After USA made the first points of the game, the Raiders would go on a 25-8 run over the next seven minutes to take control of the game. MTSU had the hot hand early making their first seven shots which included three 3-point field goals, a couple by Brandi Brown early in the half. While USA was cold and only shot 2 of 9 during the same stretch. At the end of the run MTSU was up 25-11.

They did not stop there, Chelsia Lymon would make two 3-pointers in the closing minutes, one of them at the buzzer, to lead the Blue Raiders into the locker room with a 19 point lead, 40-21. Lymon’s buzzer beating shot was the ninth of the first half for the Blue Raiders on 13 attempts.

The Lady Jags came out of the locker room and tried to rally, cutting the lead down to 15 at 50-35 about five minutes into the second half. But the Blue Raiders would not let the Jags get any more momentum. The rest of the half was all downhill until the Jags were down by 30. USA would trim the lead back down to the 23 point margin of victory for the Blue Raiders.

Coach Pietri was in disbelief a few times at the Jags shooting and defensive woes. He made several substitutions and defensive changes in the second but the Blue Raiders would exploit different holes in the defense and continue scoring.

Alysha Clark lead the game in scoring for MTSU with 23 and adding 18 rebounds for a double double going 8-19 from the floor and 7-9 from the charity stripe. Other top scorers for MTSU were Brandi Brown scoring 17 on 6-8 shooting from the floor and 5-7 from outside the arc with 5 rebounds, Jackie Pickel scoring 14 on 5-9 shooting and 4-7 from 3-point range, and Chelsia Lymon with 11 points on 4-6 shooting and 3-4 from 3-point range. MTSU ended the game shooting 12 of 22 from outside the arc.

USA was lead in scoring by Jessica Starling who had 18 points on 5-14 shooting and hitting 3 of 7 from 3-point range and making all five of her free throws. Seidah Banks was the next highest scorer with 9 on 4 of 4 shooting and hitting her only attempt from 3-point range. Karina Sproal had 8 points, six of them on two early 3-pointers in the first half, but could not hit any of her later shots until two free-throws late in the second half.

MTSU shot 45% for the game from the field to a woeful 27% for USA, with a blistering 51% to 28% in the first half. The Blue Raiders also lead in 3-point FG percentage 55% to 28%, going 9-13 in the first half. MTSU lead with points in the paint 24-14 and points off turnovers 19-10. But USA did outscore MTSU on 2nd chance points 24-14 and fast break points 4-0. Plus USA’s bench scored 19 compared to MTSU’s bench scoring only 7 points for the game.

The Lady Jags will travel to Monroe, Louisiana to take on Louisiana-Monroe on Wednesday with Tip-off set for 7:05pm.

One high point to the game was that the Thunderjags.com co-founder Matt had a visitor come sit next to him during the first half.

Matt with South Paw at the Lady Jags game.

Lady Jags Down Ohio 68-64 But Fall Short At FAU 67-66

January 3, 2009 · Filed Under Basketball, Women's · Comment 

It was Jessica Sarlings’ basket and free throw late that sealed the win over Ohio University and to run its record up to 11 wins for the season.

USA held a six point lead at halftime 42-36. After halftime, the jags would score 8 of the first 10 points to jump out to a 50-38 lead with 16:24 left in the game. About a minute later, still holding an 11 point lead, the jaguar offense went cold. With 38.3 seconds to play in the contest, Ohio pulled to within one points, 65-64, after a pair of free-throws.

Starling then stepped up for the Jags by driving in for layup with time winding down on the shot clock and was fouled on the play. She then sand the bonus shot to give USA the 68-64 win.

Shakira Nettles led the way for the Jags with 20 points on 8-19 shooting, 4-9 from beyond the arc and a team high 7 rebounds for the game. Her foil for Ohio, Lauren Hmiel, also scored 20 points with 7 rebounds. Jessica Starling added 16 to be the only other Jaguar in double digits. Notably, USA outscored Ohio 21-9 off turnovers while the other statistical categories were pretty much even.

After this win, the USA Lady Jaguars then picked up a second honorable mention vote in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.

Florida Atlantic upset the Lady Jags 67-66 when Jessica Starlings three-point attempt in the final seconds missed its mark. However the team showed alot of poise in the game. Trailing by eight points with under four minutes remaining, the Jags rally and nearly won the game on the last second shot attempt.

FAU held the lead at halftime 34-32 and would extend its lead to four early in the second half when USA would use its outside shooting to retake the lead. Starling would put the Jags up 43-38 with 16:15 to go with one of her five second half 3’s.

FAU would answer with an 8-0 run and take the lead at 46-43 with 13:40 left. The Jags and the Owls would exchange the lead several times in the next six minutes until USA took a 3 point lead on a 3-pointer from Lauren Walker. But for the next four and a half minutes the Jaguars went stone cold and FAU went on a 11-0 run grabbing its largest lead of the game at 67-59.

The Lady Jaguar defense then tightened up and held FAU scoreless for the last 4:36 of the game.

Jessica Starling lead all in scoring with 24 on 9-19 shooting, 6-13 from 3-point range. Shakira Nettles was the only other Jaguar to score in double digits with 19. Ra’Shawna Sippio pulled down 12 rebounds, 8 of them on the offensive side.

Field Goal Percentage was a dead heat between the two teams with USA shooting 36.1% to FAU’s 35.9%. But USA shot 29% from the FT line compared to 76% for FAU. Also, FAU had an edge in points in the paint 22-14, points off turnovers 12-6 and bench scoring 24-14 in their upset victory.

The Jags host Middle Tennessee State on Sunday with tip-off scheduled fro 2:05PM at the Mitchell Center.

Go Jags!

Lady Jags Roundup

December 22, 2008 · Filed Under Basketball, Women's · Comment 

The lady Jags have played six games during the December stretch so far and have gone 5-1 to run their overall record to 10-2 for the season and 2-0 in SBC play.

December 2nd the lady Jags hosted Houston Baptist and won a blow-out 83-48. Shakira Nettles scored a game high 21 points on 8-12 shooting, 5-8 from 3-point range and Vontrice Dennis chipped in with 13 points as the only two Jags to score in double digits. Jessica Starling helped with 10 rebounds for a game high as well.

The Lady Jags out-shot houston Baptist in all three categories Field Goals 42%-37%, 3-point Field Goals 44%-22% and Free Throws 77%-47% and out rebounded the opponents 52-32.

The only loss during the stretch came on December 6th at Southern. Poor first-half shooting was too much for the lady Jags to overcome on the road and lost 62-58. The Jags only hit two field goals in the first 10 minutes of the game and fell behind 18-6 and went into the lockerroom with a 35-26 deficit.

The second half, Deidre Jackson’s hot hand continued and prevent USA from chipping away at their lead but rather pushing it out to 45-31. After Coach Petri called a 30-second time out, the lady Jags intensity returned and cut the lead to 54-51 with 3:43 left in the game. Back to back baskets stretched the lead out to 58-51. Starling hit two free throws with 10.3 seconds left to cut the lead but Southern sealed the game with two free throws of their own.

Jessica Starling lead the game in scoring with 17 points and Shakira Nettles scored 11 for the only two Jags in double digits scoring. The lady Jags were out-scored in all three categories, Field Goals 34%-52%, 3-point Field Goals 23%-38% and Free Throws 53%-56%. But the telling numbers are the shooting stats from the first half where the Jags were horrible shooting 27%-58% FG’s and 20%-50% from 3-point range.

The Jags traveled to Memphis, Tennessee on December 11th and came away with an impressive win 66-49. Both teams came out struggling shooting and only made 4 of their first 17 shots combined. With Memphis up by one with just over eight minutes to go in the first half, the lady jags went on a 14-2 run over five minutes and would go into halftime with a 35-23 lead. USA forced 14 turnovers which lead to 15 points and held a 24-14 point advantage in the paint in the first half.

The lady jags kept the heat on by forcing seven turnovers before the first media timeout of the second half. USA had the lead stretched out to 41-25 with 15 minutes left in the game when Memphis hit back to back shots to get within 12 points of the lady jags, but that would be as close as they would get for the remainder of the game. USA would stretch the lead out to 64-38, a 26 point lead, but held onto a 17 point win.

Ra’Shawna Sippio lead all scorers with 18 points and 12 rebounds and Shakira Nettles tossed in 14 to be the only other lady jag in double digits scoring. The lady jags won three of the big four stats: FG’s 36%-34%, FT’s 80%-69% and rebounds 44-43. Memphis did shoot better from outside the arc 20%-15%.

The lady jags then travelled to play Western Illinois on December 13th and came home with a 55-49 victory. It was another tough shooting night that had them use their defense to win the game by forcing 22 turnovers, 10 blocked shots and 11 steals.

USA lead by five at halftime but WIU went on a 13-5 run in the first six plus minutes of the second half to take the lead 29-26 with 13:38 left. After tying the game up, WIU went on a 9-0 run to take their largest lead of the game 38-29. After a timeout, the lady jags made a run of their own going 13-2. Then with 5:53, the defense stifled WIU only allowing two FG’s from that point on with the rest of their points coming from the free throw line.

Jessica Starling lead all scorers with 14 with Shakira Nettles tossing in 12 points of her own. USA only bested WIU in one stats category. They shot 71%-67% from the free throw line, otherwise WIU lead 30%-29% in FG’s, 46%-23% from three-point distance, and 43-40 in rebounding.

On December 17th, the Lady Jags snapped their nine game losing skid to Western Kentucky with a 66-59 win on a career night by Jessica Starling. Starling was 8-13 from the floor which included her 4-8 from three-point range.

USA led by seven at halftime and started the second half with a 11-2 run and by 16:21 left in the game they had pushed out to a 41-25 point lead. Jessica Starling lead USA in scoring with 28 and Ra’Shawna Sippio scored 10 in the game. Arnika Brown from WKU lead all in scoring with 28 and came down with 14 rebounds. USA split the four categories evenly with WKU.  The lady Jags shot 39%-30% FG’s and 35%-22% in 3pt FG’s while WKU shot 75%-67% from the free throw line and out rebounded USA 47-43.

The Jags went to 2-0 in the conference on December 20th with their win at Florida International 65-47. The Jags jumped out early building a 13 point lead which it would not surrender for the remainder of the game. Jessica Starling scored 12 and was closely follwed by Brittney Rutledge who had 11. While the stats were less than impressive, they did win all four stats categories by shooting 39%-32% in FG’s, 38%-33% in 3-point FG’s and 63%-60% in FT’s. Also the Jags out rebounded FIU 49-37.

The lady Jags is in the midst of a nine day holiday break. They will be in action again on December 29th at 7:05pm at the Mitchell Center when they take on Ohio.

Lady Jags Lose to George Washington But Bounce Back In Consolation Game

December 1, 2008 · Filed Under Basketball, Women's · Comment 

The Lady Jags struggled to find its offense on Friday against George Washington to lose their first game of the season 64-59. Shakira Nettles led the Jags with 16 points and was closely followed by Jessica Starling who scored 15 and Karina Sproal who scored 10.

GW outscored the Jags 34-14 on the inside and were held to 28% field goal percentage.

In the consolation game of the GW Thanksgiving Tournament, the Lady Jags took on Liberty and won 65-61. Liberty has been to 11 of the last 12 NCAA Tournament and marks a nice win against good opposition. Jessica Starling lead the way with 18 points, Shikira Nettles scored 16 and Sarda Peterson scored 11 to round out the players in double digits.

The first half was a close match but USA hit its stride in the second half with the closest point in the game being 47-46 with 7:56 left in the game. The jags pulled away from there to hold on to the win.

The Lady Jags (5-1) will play again on Tuesday against Houston Baptist at 7:05pm at the Mitchell Center.

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