Troy men’s, women’s basketball pick up conference wins
Published 8:35 pm Saturday, February 5, 2022
Both the Troy University men and women’s basketball teams picked up conference wins on Saturday, Feb. 5, as the women knocked off rival South Alabama at home and the men beat Georgia Southern on the road.
The women’s team (17-7, 8-2) dominated South Alabama from start to finish jumping out to a 12-0 run to begin the game and eventually took a 31-4 lead into the second quarter. Troy continued that roll in the second quarter and led 44-22 at halftime.
In the second half, the Trojans emptied the bench but continued to pour it on the Lady Jags and came away with an 84-52 win.
Junior Felmas Koranga had yet another double-double for the Trojans with 10 points and 12 rebounds along with three blocked shots despite playing just one half. Jasmine Robinson and Tina Stephens each scored 12 points, while Ja’mia Hollings scored a career-high 12 points coming off the bench. All 12 of her points came in the fourth quarter. Every player on the Troy roster played seven minutes or more and all but two players scored.
The Trojans also outrebounded South Alabama 62-42 and forced 21 turnovers.
“What a great night in Trojan Arena,” Troy coach Chanda Rigby said. “We had a great crowd here tonight and we’re thankful for every person that came out and helped us get this win tonight, it meant a lot to us.
“I’m most proud of the way we started the game. We held them to just four points in the first quarter and it didn’t end there. The people that came off the bench – even towards the end of the game – really contributed. They took their role seriously.”
Koranga’s double-double was her 11th of the season. Rigby said Koranga’s consistency is what stands out most about her game.
“It’s amazing. She’s so consistent and that was her word for this year,” Rigby said. “She wanted to be more consistent. The other thing she is consistent with is her attitude and always putting the team first.”
Koranga pointed to consistency again as she was asked what she felt the Trojans needed to continue to work on as the conference tournament draws closer.
“If we start the game with high energy we need to learn how to finish the game with that same high energy,” Koranga said. “I don’t think we’re ever going to start with low energy because we have learned from our past mistakes but we just have to learn how to maintain that high energy throughout the game.”
The men’s team (16-7, 7-3) also closed out a two-game swing in Georgia with a 61-52 win over Georgia Southern on Feb. 5. Troy led Georgia Southern 35-23 at halftime. Georgia Southern managed to outscore Troy 29-26 in the second half and even took a lead midway through the half after going on a 16-2 run. The Trojans however responded with a 14-6 run and managed to hold on for another conference win to retain second place in the Sun Belt.
Duke Miles had a big night for the Trojans with 11 points, eight assists and six steals, while Ede Odigie scored 12 points and Keiffer Punter added 11 points and eight rebounds.
“It was a super gritty game,” Trojan head coach Scott Cross said. “Our guys played extremely hard with great defense throughout the game.
“We had that 12-point lead going into halftime and let our guard down a little bit. Georgia Southern’s a very tough, defensive team. They’re well-coached and make it really hard for you to score.”