Herd women off to best start in 45 years with 81-45 win

HUNTINGTON – The Marshall women’s basketball team is off to its best start since 1971-72 by defeating Alabama A&M 81-45 in the Cam Saturday. Marshall is now 6-0.

“I think we should enjoy this win,” Herd Coach Matt Daniel said. “Not just because of who we beat but to go 6-0 for the first time in 45 years. And I’m 39 so I wasn’t around to see the last start. I’m very excited for the program, the community, the university and for the team.”

The Herd got off to a slow start in the first quarter leading the Bulldogs 10-8. Marshall shot just 5 of 18 from the field but started to catch fire in the second.

Marshall started the second quarter with a 5-0 run and ended it with a 10-0 run to go up 32-18 at the half. Junior Kiana Evans (Huntington, W.Va.) took charge in the first half with nine points on 4-7 shooting and grabbed five boards.

The Herd dominated the third quarter scoring 31 points to build the lead out to 34. Marshall had runs of 18-0 and 9-0 in the third as redshirt sophomore Taylor Porter (Fort Gay, W.Va.) and freshman Shayna Gore (Logan, W.Va.) lit up the scoreboard from long distance with two 3s. Evans and freshman Logan Fraley (Ashland, Ky.) also drained a three each to help put away the Bulldogs.

Marshall went to its bench in the fourth quarter to finish off the 81-45 win. It was the second straight game Marshall held its opponent under 50 points.

Coach Daniel was very pleased with his team’s effort in the second half. “We gave up more points in the second half but our energy was just better so I was more pleased with the second half than the first.”

Marshall recorded an assist on 24 of 32 made baskets and grabbed over 50 rebounds for the second time this season.

“We are very balanced this year,” Coach Daniel said. “We share the ball, we didn’t turn it over too bad. We outrebounded them and we made it to the free throw line.”

Evans led the Herd in scoring with a new career high 16 and tied her single game career high in rebounds with 8. Porter set a new personal single game high with four 3-pointers made and Gore set a new personal best with seven rebounds and had 14 points for the game.

Redshirt senior Leah Scott scored (Detroit, Mich.) in double figures for the 16th consecutive game with 14. She now has 935 career points with the Herd and sits just three points away from passing Toni Patillo (1997-01) for 21st all-time. Scott also set a new single game best with three blocks.

Senior Norrisha Victrum tossed out four more assists to move her career number to 292 surpassing Stephanie Wine (1992-96) for seventh place all-time. It is also the 61st consecutive game that Victrum has recorded at least one assist.

Marshall will now have a week to take finals and prepare and for the Capital Classic against West Virginia Sunday, Dec. 13 at the Civic Center in Charleston, W.Va. Tipoff is set for 4 p.m.

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