Lady Trojans open league play with 85-67 win

Published 12:00 am Sunday, December 2, 2001

Sparked by 18 points off the bench from Laura Schwendeman and tenacious defense that forced 26 turnovers, the Troy State women’s basketball team opened Atlantic Sun Conference play with an 85-67 win over Jacksonville on Saturday at Trojan Arena.

Chaquita Alexander added 17 points and Jennifer McInnis scored 11 of her 13 points in the second half for the Lady Trojans (1-2, 1-0 A-Sun), who stretched a 35-31 halftime lead with torrid second-half shooting. Troy State shot 51 percent over the final 20 minutes (20-39) and hit 53 percent from 3-point range (8-15) to build as much as a 26-point lead, 81-55, with 3:31 to play.

"It was one of those games where we shot the ball really well," Troy State head coach Jerry Hester said. "We were on fire. We talked about this game, and its importance, all week. Starting 1-0 in conference play is important. To us, our season really started today."

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The Lady Trojans opened the season against 2001 NCAA Tournament participant Chattanooga on Nov. 18 and then played perennial Southeastern Conference power Alabama on Nov. 20. Troy State failed to shoot the ball well in both performances and did not receive much help from the team’s bench in either loss.

Neither were problems on Saturday.

Schwendeman hit seven of 13 shots from the floor and four of seven from 3-point range in 18 minutes. Alexander hit six of 10 shots from the floor and three of four from beyond the arc. Troy State shot 46 percent (35-77) and 43 percent from 3-point range (12-28) for the game, with the bench providing 37 points.

Jacksonville (0-4, 0-1 A-Sun) shot 51 percent from the floor and outrebounded the Lady Trojans, 41-36, but couldn’t slow down the Troy State offense. Forward Kara Donnell led the Dolphins with 24 Troy State returns to action on Monday at home against A-Sun foe Stetson at 7 p.m., while Jacksonville travels to play Mercer.