@MiamiWBB Defeats JU for Fourth Straight Win
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – For the first time in the last four games, the University of Miami did not open up the scoring.
Instead, the Hurricanes reeled off a 20-0 run against Jacksonville after conceding the first two points of the contest and rolled from there to a 65-36 win.
Miami (6-2) did not allow Jacksonville (2-5) to make a field goal until 4:25 was left in the first half, a stretch of over 15 and a half minutes. The Dolphins made just one more field goal before the break, and entered the locker room shooting 2-of-21 (9.5 percent) from the floor.
“Credit to my team, it was a quick turnaround. We played with as much defensive energy as we played with all year, but we played great team defense,” UM head coach Katie Meier said. “As a coach, team offense, they’ll buy into, but getting a team to buy into team defense isn’t always easy and it’s a lot of work and even when we’re not scoring, like the start of the game, just like at Middle Tennessee, we’ve never pouted and had a defensive hangover from our offense and that’s really impressive, especially for a young team. So, obviously they care about each other this team, and I care about them deeply and I’m really proud.”
The Hurricanes forced 19 turnovers in the first half and turned them into 20 points. This was the second straight game Miami forced 15-plus turnovers and had 17-plus points off turnovers before halftime. Additionally, Miami had 12 steals in the first 20 minutes and led 28-12 midway through the game.
Adrienne Motley was outstanding in the opening frame, scoring 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting from the field. The sophomore guard scored Miami’s first eight points, and did so in a span of fewer than two minutes, as she hit jump shots on four straight possessions.
“Mot got hot there and I took her out and I was like, ‘Go put your hands in a heating pack, don’t get cold,’ because she was hot,” Meier said with a bit of a laugh. “. . . But that’s the other thing about our team is if somebody’s hot we’re going to give them the ball, and we’re going to pass up shots and give them the ball, and if they cool down, then we’ll adjust.”
Miami’s defensive intensity did not dwindle in the second half, as it limited Jacksonville to just seven points in the first 13 minutes after the break. The Hurricanes also had their offensive get into more of a rhythm after they left the locker room.
The second half scoring included a pair of three-pointers from sophomore guard Jessica Thomas, who connected on three in the game to match a career high.
Erykah Davenport’s solid play down low was a huge boost for the Hurricanes all game long, as the freshman had career highs in points (nine) and rebounds (five). The four made field goals were also a career best for the forward from Tucker, Ga.
“I thought Erykah has been practicing so well and I knew she’d be a big force today,” Meier said. “And so when she came through—and she basically was told, ‘You better come through.’ I don’t treat her as a freshman. I’m like, ‘Here’s the facts. You’ve got size, you’ve got athletic ability and we’re going to go to you and you need to come through.’ And most kids would choke and I thought Erykah showed great maturity and just really came through.”
Junior forward Briona Brown paced the Dolphins with 14 points, but was limited to 3-of-9 shooting from the floor.
Miami will have a full week until its next game, as the Hurricanes will next take the court Saturday, Dec. 13 against Coppin State. The game against the Eagles (1-6) is set for 1:00 p.m. at the BankUnited Center.
MIAMI HURRICANES POSTGAME NOTES
- Miami recorded their first win in program history over Jacksonville to even the series record at 1-1.
- Coach Katie Meier recorded her 245th career win (245-168 in 14 seasons).
- Miami started Jessica Thomas, Laura Quevedo, Jassany Williams, Adrienne Motley, and Suriya McGuire. It is the second consecutive game that the Canes have used that lineup.
- The Dolphins scored the first points of the game when Loliya Briggs made a pair of free throws with 16:02 remaining in the first half. Then, the Hurricanes scored 20 unanswered points over the next 8:42 until Jacksonville made another pair of free throws with 7:20 to go in the first half.
- The Hurricanes held Jacksonville to two field goals (2-for-21 shooting) in the first half. The Dolphins did not make their first field goal until 4:25 remaining in the first half.
- Miami took a double-digit lead (28-12) into halftime for the fifth time in their first eight games. The Hurricanes have led at halftime in all seven of their home games this season.
- For the seventh time in eight games, all 11 healthy Hurricanes played.
- Miami scored 24 or more points in the first half for the seventh time in their first eight games.
- The Hurricanes won their third game this season by 28 or more points.
- Nigia Greene matched career highs in three-pointers made, free throws made and free throws attempted, with two of each.
- Jassany Williams recorded two blocked shots in the first half to tie her season high. She finished the game with two and is now just three away from 150 career blocks.
- Williams also recorded a career-high four steals in the win.
- Jessica Thomas tied career highs with five rebounds (previous at Oakland, 11/19/13) and seven three-point field goal attempts (previous vs. North Florida, 11/8/13).
- Thomas also scored in double figures for the third time in the last four games.
- Laura Quevedo has recorded multiple assists in consecutive games for the first time in her career. Her two assists and two steals both matched career highs.
- In addition to setting career highs in points (nine), rebounds (five) and made field goals (four), Erykah Davenport also recorded the first assist of her career.
- Adrienne Motley has scored 16 or more points every home game this season.