Lady Tigers Rally But Fall in Physical Contest at Marshall, 73-60
Feb. 1, 2007
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - With Marshall (14-8, 7-2 C-USA) up just three, 39-36, after a Memphis second half run trimmed a 28-18 half time deficit, Memphis sophomore Paris Leonard drew a blocking call with 12:28 remaining in the game. That call, which briefly took Alix Barnette out of the game with a bloody nose and jersey, fired up the Marshall crowd, bench and Thundering Herd sophomore Meg Withrow who reeled off nine straight points, and scored 13 of Marshall's last 29 points in a 73-60 win over Memphis (3-20, 0-9 C-USA) that gave Marshall head coach Royce Chadwick's 300th NCAA Division I victory.
"Our defense kept us in the game, there's no question it did," head coach Blair Savage-Lansden said. "We need to make a few free-throws. We got 20 attempts, and 20 is good for the road, but we've got to knock them down. We let the officiating go to our heads and that's a sign of immaturity and that's what I explained to them. We're out of it mentally when that happens and it's my job to get on them."
Memphis had its opportunities in the first half, as the Lady Tigers forced Marshall in to 13 first half turnovers, which negated a 23.1 Memphis shooting performance and kept the Thundering Herd within reach, 28-18, at the half.
Memphis scored first in the game, leading 4-2 before an 11-0 Marshall run sparked largely by a big early advantage on the glass gave the Thundering Herd the 13-4 lead. But the Lady Tigers battled back, using an 8-2 run to pull within 10 at the break. Seven of the 10 Lady Tigers who played grabbed a steal in the first half, including three from senior Devin Necaise, who also knocked down a pair of threes for six first half points.
"In the first few minutes of the game, we were out-rebounded 19-7," Savage said. "We told them about it, and the players refocused and buckled down and started boxing out. I think later in the game we got gun shy when we got called for a box-out foul on Modupe (Ishola). We got gun shy there because we were trying not to foul and still be aggressive, but we just didn't know which way to go. Our kids played so well, they fought and Marshall just literally opened it up at the end."
Memphis had three players in double digit points led by 13 from Aroha Jennings, who was 1-for-1 from three-point range, 4-for-4 from the free-throw line and added seven rebounds, including four offensive. Devin Necaise and Paris Leonard each added 12 points, pulling Necaise to just three points from her 1,000th career collegiate point. Ashley Thornton added nine points and led the team with eight rebounds. Necaise led all players with four steals during the game.
Withrow led all players with 20 points, while KaShawn Curry scored 13 points with 10 rebounds, and Kendra King and Modupe Ishola scored 10 apiece. Ishola also added a game-high 15 rebounds and three blocks.
Memphis will wrap up its current three-game league road swing at East Carolina at 1 p.m. (ET), Saturday. That game can be heard on WUMR, 91.7 FM in Memphis and on www.gotigersgo.com through Yahoo! Sports.