UMO women fall to Limestone
By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on January 4, 2014 11:13 PM
MOUNT OLIVE -- With a Conference Carolinas co-leader visiting Kornegay Arena on Saturday afternoon Mount Olive needed to turn in a performance worthy of a big game.
The Trojans failed to match the Saints' intensity for the majority of a 74-60 loss.
Jasmine McDonald led Mount Olive with 16 points. Ty Wallace and Joneiqua Gary each supplied 12 points.
Limestone's Celestra Warren led all scorers with 21 points.
The Saints (10-3, 2-1 CC) outworked the Trojans in nearly every statistical category in the opening half. Limestone held a 22-18 edge in rebounding, including a 13-9 advantage on the defensive boards.
The Saints forced 14 Trojans' turnovers and tallied nine steals. Mount Olive committed five turnovers in the first six minutes.
"It's really difficult to explain what we were thinking in the first half," Trojans' head coach Wendy Lee said. "Everybody here knew that was not our best game and that's not how we typically play. It may not be the most important for us to figure out why it happened but to make sure it doesn't happen again."
Limestone also held Mount Olive to 0 for 12 from beyond the arc. The Trojans shot just 7 for 29 (24.1 percent) from the floor in the first 20 minutes. The Saints had a 20-8 advantage in points in the point.
"I think sometimes when you have players that have shot the ball well and they miss shots early it causes them to get distracted," Lee said. "I thought we had key players who missed shots early and they didn't really lock down on defense."
Limestone took its biggest lead of the first half at 44-20 on Ayshia McNeil's layup with fewer than two minutes left in the first half. The Saints scored 20 of the final 26 points of the opening half and led 44-22 at the intermission.
Mount Olive made a late 10-0 run to cut the Saints' lead to 61-47 with fewer than five minutes to play in the second half. Andrea Jones' layup pulled the Trojans to within 63-54 but Mount Olive could get no closer.
McDonald scored 11 of her 16 points in the final 10 minutes.
"Jasmine is really dependable all the time," Lee said. "I thought she kind of took the team and pulled us together and gave us a little spunk and made some really good stops. She showed good leadership and I think she'll continue to do that."
The Trojans (7-4, 2-1) continue conference play on Wednesday when they play host to King. The Tornado began the weekend tied atop the conference standings.
"For us to learn from this we have to start with intensity and not wait for a spark," Lee said. "We have to be that spark at the very beginning of the game and get our stops on defense."
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