The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

November 10, 2012

MSSU women top Southwest Minnesota; PSU grabs win

The Joplin Globe

PITTSBURG, Kan. — Freshman guard Sharese Jones scored 14 points off the bench as Missouri Southern defeated Southwest Minnesota State 73-64 Saturday afternoon in the Pittsburg State Tipoff Classic at John Lance Arena.

Jones sank 4-of-5 field goals, including her only attempt from 3-point range, and 5-of-7 free throws. She also had six rebounds, two assists and two steals in 23 minutes.

“I could tell in the locker room before the game she was ready to play,” Lions coach Maryann Mitts said. “We gave her a shot early, and her defense got a couple of steals. I think with that, she gained confidence.

“She played a physical basketball game. I think she overpowered them with her physicality and gained more and more confidence as the game wore on.”

Center Shonte Clay scored 12 points for the second straight game, and her seven rebounds led the Lions to a 38-25 advantage on the boards.

Jolee Sharp, Kori Dodson and Shatara Stone contributed nine points apiece to the Lions’ balanced attack. Clay, Tee Singleton and Kristen Hanna all had three assists, and Sharp blocked two shots.

The Lions shot 56 percent (25-of-45) from the floor, including 7-of-12 from beyond the arc. Dodson went 2-for-2 from long range for the second straight game, and Sharp was 2-for-3.

The Lions, who fell behind 10-0 in Friday’s season-opening loss, owned an 11-8 lead at the first media timeout and led 34-18 at halftime.

“Our intensity ... we played the game the way it’s supposed to be played,” Mitts said. “We played hard. We won the 50-50 plays. We were so much more aggressive. The intensity at which our girls played fixed a lot of problems we’ve been having in our first game and exhibition season.”

Guard Bree Holleman made half of Southwest Minnesota’s 10 3-pointers and finished with 26 points. The Mustangs, who went 6-20 last season, shot 34 percent (18-of-53).

Pitt State 80, Mary 60

Lizzy Jeronimus scored a game-high 23 points and Pittsburg State rolled to a 20-point win against a regional foe.

Jeronimus hit 8-of-14 shots fom the field and was 7-of-8 from the line while leading the team with four assists and three steals.

Lauren Brown — Pitt State’s 6-foot-6 senior center — scored 10 points, grabbed five rebounds and blocked three shots in just 12 minutes before fouling out. Hailey Roderique added 10 points and a team-high six rebounds for the Gorillas (2-0).

After shooting 63 percent in a season-opening win on Friday, the Gorillas cooled to 43 percent on Saturday, including just 4-for-20 from behind the arc.

Ali Collins and Brittney Dietz led the way for Mary (1-1) with 16 points a piece. Shuanna Knife added 10.

The Gorillas now have nearly two weeks off before facing Evangel in the Missouri Southern Thanksgiving Classic on Nov. 23.