Lady Pirates Continue To Win Close Games with 61-55 Victory Over Alabama
Jan. 2, 2006
TUSCALOOSA, ALA. - For the fifth time this season the East Carolina women's basketball team won on the road, this time following a 61-55 victory over Alabama.
East Carolina (8-4, 0-1) used its defense down the stretch to hold off a late surge by the Crimson Tide (6-7) which included two defensive rebounds and two blocked shots, countering an 8-4 run in the final 4:34 of the contest.
The Lady Pirates offense continued to flourish early in the second half by starting with a 12-5 run led by Impris Manning's five points and offensive catalyst Jasmine Young adding three, with the lead reaching 47-33 at the 13:55 mark of the game. With the lead remaining in double digits for the next 7:35 of the contest, Alabama cut the deficit to 54-44.
Gaining momentum behind Marverly Nettles and Dee Merriweather, the Crimson Tide made its final attempt to take the lead, reducing the deficit to 57-52. East Carolina turned up the defensive pressure and behind two clutch free throws by Jasmine Young made the final 61-55.
"The fact that we played in so many close games helped us down the stretch," head coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener said. "Jasmine's (Young) free throws were big in the late stage of the game and also when she drove the lane with the shot clock going down. We kept our composure, despite losing a little bit of our lead, to be able to come out of here with a victory."
In a balanced scoring attack for East Carolina, who took a 32-25 into the half, Cherie Mills netted a team-high with nine points while Jessica Slack added eight. Seven Lady Pirates notched at least two points, with point guard Jasmine Young connecting on one of the two first half three point shots to finish the first half with six points and three assists. Senior LaToya Horton, starting in her second straight contest, led ECU with seven boards.
After a Cherie Mills jumper gave the Lady Pirates a 2-0 advantage, the Crimson Tide's Dee Merriweather knotted the game and following an Impris Manning layup ECU would not trail for the remainder of the half. By the 13:50 mark of the first, a jumper by Nicole Days extended the East Carolina lead to 13-4.
A 9-4 run by Alabama over the next 5:29 of the contest trimmed the Lady Pirates lead to 17-13, before six points by Jessica Slack and a Cherie Mills jumper extended the lead back to eight at 25-17. ECU would take its largest lead of the first half, 30-19, following a free throw by Mills with 2:32 remaining.
ECU vs. Alabama
ECU Head Coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener