Lady Trojans rally for a 71-65 win

Published 12:00 am Sunday, January 21, 2001

Sports Writer

There is a saying in basketball that defense leads to offense. That statement came true last Thursday for the Troy State Lady Trojans against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.

TSU trailed the Islanders by eight points with 6:38 left in the game, but outscored the Islanders 21-7 the rest of the way for a 71-65 non-conference victory at Trojan Arena.

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Freshman Jennifer McInnis lead the way for TSU with 15 points and freshman Laura Schwendeman chipped in 11. Kira McWaine added 10 points, seven assists, six rebounds and five steals.

The win evened the Lady Trojans record at 7-7.

"I thought the press was effective all night," TSU head coach Jerry Hester said. "We changed the press about three different times in the second half and it helped. We just

kind of maintained tonight and hung in there until we could get a chance to win."

"We moved people around in some strange places and it ended up working out for us, so we are excited about the win."

TSU lead 10-8 with 12:54 left in the first half, but Detra Johnson scored nine straight points for TAMCC during a 9-0 run for a 17-10 advantage. Johnson scored 12 points in the first half.

The Islanders took their biggest lead of the half at 22-13 after a free throw by Jean Clark with 7:17 remaining in the half. But a 7-0 run by the Lady Trojans, five points coming from Tomekia Golatte, cut the TAMCC lead to 24-22.

McWaine’s basket with over a minute to play gave TSU a 32-30 halftime lead.

A three-pointer by Jessie Monlux gave TAMCC their first lead of the second half with 16:28 to play. The Islander lead stayed around four points until a basket by Clark pushed the lead to 58-50. But the Lady Trojans defense took over the game the rest of the way.

Back-to-back three-pointers by Schwendeman and McInnis cut the lead to 60-56. A free throw by McInnis followed by a bucket by freshman Thea Herring gave TSU their first lead since early in the second half. McInnis scored four straight points for a 67-61 lead with :53 to go.

McWaine’s two free throws sealed the victory with :20 left in the game.

Hester said Schwendeman and McInnis’ shooting was a key down the stretch.

"Those two can really shoot the basketball, they are tremendous shooters. McInnis struggled all night. I’ve been on her so hard about her dribble penetration because she gets herself in a deep spot and I just want her to stop and shoot."

"But I know she can shoot and I believe in her shooting. And now we have Schwendeman back where she needs to be."

But Hester left no doubt who the key to the Lady Trojans success is.

"Kira is key to this basketball team, if she plays well we have a chance to win a lot of basketball games. Her and Tomekia both, we need their leadership and Tomekia kept us in the game some in the first half."

Johnson lead the Islanders with 22 points off the bench and Kristin Rogers pumped in 13 points and grabbed eight rebounds. The Lady Trojans held the Islanders to 28.9 percent shooting from the field in the first half and 35.6 percent for the game. TAMCC outscored TSU 22-4 in the paint, but couldn’t overcome their poor outside shooting.