PETERSBURG, VA. (Nov. 26, 2011) – Senior forward Jasmine Williams (Stratford, Conn.) continued her torrid start to the season with a 24-point performance and senior point guard Simone Williams (Waldorf, Md.) dished out a career-high 13 assists but it was not enough as Elizabeth City State University topped Mercy College, 69-53 to close out the VSU Thanksgiving Classic.
ECSU improves to 3-2 with the win while Mercy drops to 0-6 on the season.
The Mavericks looked to be on their way to victory at the start as they hit two baskets and earned a steal in the opening minute to go up 4-0, but ECSU responded quickly with nine unanswered points and slowly extended the lead throughout, heading into the break up 30-20 as the Vikings outshot Mercy by 25 percent.
Mercy stormed back out to open the second half as well, scoring seven straight after an ECSU bucket to cut the lead to five, but the Vikings bounced back once again and weathered another Maverick rally later on to take the game, 69-53.
Mercy dominated in the paint, outscoring ECSU 26-18 but lost the advantage on second-chance points. ECSU hit almost 47 percent of its shots, including an impressive 42 percent from behind the arc while the Mavericks struggled once again, shooting only 44 percent from the free throw line and missing their lone three-point attempt.
Jasmine Williams' 24 points led the Mavericks and she tied with Simone Williams for the team lead with three steals while senior forward Talia Beaulieu (Waldorf, Md.) paced the squad with seven rebounds.
Junior forward Stephanie Harper (Charleston, Ill.) notched a double-double with 19 points and 15 rebounds for the Vikings while junior guard Shatara Jackson (Wilmington, N.C.) led the squad in scoring with 22 points. Senior guard DeAudra Brown (Rocky Mount, N.C.) also scored in double digits (11), dished out six assists and made three steals to lead the team.
Head Coach Kelli Dunlay and the Mavericks will take a week off before opening conference play at Molloy College (3-4), which was picked to finish fifth in the East Coast Conference in the preseason poll, on Wednesday, Dec. 7 at 6:00 p.m.