|Trio Leads Savannah State To Win Over Morgan State||< All News|
|Monday, March 10, 2014|
Norfolk, Va. —The trio of Ezinne Kalu, Bria Dorsey and Jasmine Norman proved to be too much as they combined for 61 points to lead Savannah State to an 82-71 win over Morgan State in the first round of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Tournament at the Norfolk Scope.
The Lady Tigers (18-13), the Number 5 seed, advance to the quarterfinal round against Florida A&M, the Number 4 seed on Thursday at 2:30 pm.
Savannah State jumped out to the early lead and was never challenged as it took a comfortable 50-34 lead to the locker room. Norman (13 points), Kalu (11) and Dorsey (10) did most of the damage, combining to shoot 14 of 24 from the field en route to a 57 percent (21 of 37) shooting exhibition.
“We knew early on, that night in and night out, we have six or seven players who can score the basketball or start for us,” said Savannah State head coach Cedric Baker. “We always try to get three in double figures. We didn’t really expect them to score that many points between them. It was a big plus for us.”
The Lady Bears (5-25), the Number 12 seed, did get 12 points from Tracey Carrington and 11 from Danielle Forrest, but they could not offset the scoring of the trio or the 28-9 advantage in the paint by the Lady Tigers.
Savannah State was on cruise control through most of the second half, leading by 69-44 at the 11:26 mark. But the Lady Bears refused to fold and went on a 26-9 run over a 10-minute stretch to cut the deficit to 76-71 with 1:29 remaining, creating some anxiety for the Lady Tigers. The rally was fueled by Carrington (16 second half points), Forrest and Dinah Jones.
“We have a young team and the only thing that I have to say is that we did not quit in any games this season,” said Morgan State head coach Donald Beasley. “We stuck together and came back; we just couldn’t finish.”
Following a timeout by Baker, Kalu scored four of her team’s six points during a 6-0 run to close out the game and send the Lady Tigers to the second round for the first time since they joined the MEAC in 2011-12.
“This win is one step in the right direction for our program,” said Baker. “We are happy to come out victorious. We look forward to the next round against FAMU. We have played some really good games against them. It is a great matchup. You have Jasmine Grice, the player of the year who is a very smart player and a prolific scorer and you have Sparkman who’s a spot up shooter and can put up big numbers. We are looking forward to the challenge.”
Carrington, an All-MEAC second team selection, led all scorers with 28, Forrest tallied 18 and Robinson and Jones added 11 and 10, respectively.
Kalu, a third team All-MEAC selection, led her team with 22, Dorsey with 20 and Norman 19.