Another victory for women’s basketball

By Yenny Nolasco

Staff Writer

The women’s basketball team welcomed the Cougars of Chicago State University on Saturday, Feb. 16 in the Icardo Center, making this their ninth consecutive victory. The ‘Runners outscored the Cougars 72-54. Redshirt sophomore center Janae Coffee led the ‘Runners with 17 points while redshirt sophomore guard Tyonna Outland had a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds.

The ‘Runners scored the first seven points of the game, leaving the Cougars behind with 24 points by the end of the first half with a total of 38-14. The ‘Runners defeated the Cougars 70-51 on Jan. 24 in Chicago to take a 2-1all-time series record.

The ‘Runners never trailed and maintained composure as the Cougars tried to steal the ball unsuccessfully.

The ‘Runners defense kept the Cougars to 54 points, 12.5 percentage behind the three-point line while forcing 18 turnovers. Saturday’s victory puts the ‘Runners’ record at 11-15 on the season.

Although the ‘Runners had a high turnover count at 16, they still managed to maintain the lead. “We tried to force them to have some turnovers as well,” said Head Coach Greg McCall.

“We tried to place a good defense. The second half we didn’t play how we were supposed to. We came out and scored our first bucket, but then right away we started giving them hope towards the row. We start to play a lot sluggish and we start playing a little bit more tired, and that’s not what we trying to accomplish. We are trying to do something to get ourselves in position…we cannot play the way we played,” said McCall.

The ‘Runners had multiple fast breaks. In addition, the ‘Runners had 46 points in the paint. “That’s huge for us,” said McCall.

“We always try to attack inside-out that’s our biggest thing; attacking inside first then we look for the outside. So that’s some of the things that we’re trying to continue to get better at. There a couple of things we could’ve done better tonight, especially knocking out some open shots but from the outside making out free throws.”

With just three games left in the season, the ‘Runners believe they continue the winning streak and possibly make it to post-season.

“I think the girls did a really good job holding it together and keeping composure. That’s a record for us here,” said McCall referring to the ninth consecutive victory the ‘Runners had since a Jan. 3 loss to Fresno State.

The streak ties 2010-2011 school Division I record for consecutive wins in a season. The ‘Runners close the season with a home game March 2 against New Orleans in the Icardo Center.