Coker’s 24 points pace No. 24 LMU in 66-50 win at USC Aiken
Published 2:44 pm Tuesday, November 14, 2017
AIKEN, S.C. — Shea Coker’s 24 points led all scorers as she helped pace the No. 24/12 Lady Railsplitters to the wire-to-wire 79-63 win over host USC Aiken Saturday afternoon in the final game of the SAC vs. Peach Belt Conference Challenge.
Freshman Maggie Jachimczuk added in eight points and 10 rebounds while Ross Mathis added in seven points in a contest that saw 13 LMU players reach the scoring column. Coker also tied her career high in rebounds as she pulled down seven on the evening.
LMU (1-1) shot 40.8 percent (29-71) from the field, 40 percent (8-20) from behind the arc and 56.5 percent (13-23) from the free-throw line. The Pacers (0-2) fared slightly worse for the day, shooting 40 percent from the field, 36.4 percent from 3-point range and 55 percent from the line.
The Lady Railsplitters out-rebounded USC Aiken by a 45-37 margin while assisting on 19 shots and making 10 steals. They forced the Pacers into 28 turnovers while committing 21 of their own.
The loss spoiled a career night for Aiken’s Emily Waters, who had 19 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Pacers. Melyk Taouil chipped in 11 points and Lonesha Lee had nine points.
Karsen Sims put LMU up 3-0 as she hit her first 3-pointer of the season on LMU’s second possession of the game. Waters then got an and-1 basket to tie the game up at 3-3 with 8:20 left in the first frame.
Emily Griffith then hit a basket to spark an 11-2 run over the next four minutes. They would expand that lead to double digits, ending the quarter leading 25-13 following a Dasia Maxwell 3-pointer.
The lead would expand to 32-16 following a Jordan Brightwell basket at the 7:38 mark. The Pacers would cut it to nine on two occasions but each time sophomore Sydney Duggins would bury a 3-pointer to pull the lead back out to 12 points.
Freshman Addi Kirkpatrick added some insurance late as she scored her first career basket off the assist by Rachel Griffith with 14 second left, giving LMU the 42-28 lead at the half.
Despite shooting almost 70 percent from the field (9-13) for the quarter, Aiken was unable to make up any ground in the stanza. The Lady Railsplitters extended their lead to 57-37 following a Qua Hines free throw mid-way through the quarter and maintained a 66-50 advantage heading into the fourth quarter.
Period number four saw the teams mainly trade baskets as both scored 13 points each in the frame and LMU would hold on for their first win of the season with the 66-50 win.
LMU travels to Wise, Virginia, for the first time since Nov. 22, 2000 to face the Highland Cavaliers of UVa-Wise on Wednesday. The two teams last met on Nov. 29, 2001 when Wise fell to the Lady Railsplitters 90-66 in Harrogate.
LMU leads the overall series 19-4. The Cavs, who finished third in the Mountain East Conference last season, opened their season with a 56-47 loss at Millersville in the MEC/PSAC Conference Challenge.