Four in doubles as VWC wins at Hollins
ROANOKE, Va. -- Four Virginia Wesleyan College women's basketball players scored in double figures Friday as the Marlins posted a 63-54 Old Dominion Athletic Conference victory over host Hollins University.
Junior Kristen Blalock (Suffolk, Va./Portsmouth Christian) led the Marlins (7-7, 5-4) with 15 points, sophomore Kerry Johnson (Richmond, Va./J.R. Tucker) added 13, senior Kristina Jameson (Harrisonburg, Va./Broadway) tallied 12 and junior Shawnee Lewis (Alexandria, Va./Thomas A. Edison) contributed 10.
Lacie Forrest (Richmond, Va./Meadowbrook) and Jasmine Greene (Hampton, Va./Tabb) scored early to put Hollins (4-8, 2-6) in the lead, but Jameson nailed a triple with 15:49 remaining in the first half to give Virginia Wesleyan a lead it never lost.
Jameson's triple was part of a 17-0 run by the Marlins, who turned a 5-1 deficit into an 18-5 lead with 11:28 remaining in the first half. Five Marlins scored in the run, led by Jameson and Blalock with five points each.
Virginia Wesleyan pushed out to a 16 points lead late in the half and enjoyed its largest lead in the first 20 minutes at 35-17 following a Blalock layup. VWC led 35-19 at halftime.
Second half shooting woes prevented the Marlins from putting the game away however, as VWC connected on just 8-of-36 field goal attempts. The Marlins saw an 18 point lead whittled away to six points when Molly Tahmaseb (Greensboro, N.C./Northern Guilford) nailed a jumper with 12:40 remaining in the game.
Another triple by Jameson returned momentum to VWC for a few minutes, as the Marlins gradually rebuilt their lead to 12, helped by a crucial triple from Johnson. Hollins pushed one more time however, and followed the lead of Tamara Phillips (Roanoke, Va./Lord Botetourt), Krystle White (Princeton, W.Va./Princeton) and Greene to pull within a 51-48 score with 4:25 on the clock.
VWC did not rattle though and played an aggressive offensive game that put the Marlins at the free throw line. Virginia Wesleyan hit 8-of-8 freebies in the final 2:28 and got key baskets from Johnson and Blalock, to stay in front. VWC led 61-48 with 21 seconds remaining.
Neither team enjoyed a consistent night in the field as both barely shot over 29% for the game. VWC's defense played a crucial role for the Marlins, forcing 22 Hollins turnovers, eight steals and four blocks. Jameson led the Marlins with four steals and rookie Katie Tassa (Bristow, Va./Manassas Osbourn Park) added three. Johnson, who matched a season-high with 13 points, also matched a season high with three blocks.
Hollins enjoyed the edge in rebounding however, pulling down 54, compared to 43 by the Marlins. Tassa, at 5-foot-7, led VWC rebounding with a season-high eight. Junior Jocelyn Spencer (Newport News, Va./Hampton Roads Academy) added seven. Greene, only 5-5, led all rebounding with 15, including 11 on the defensive boards.
Greene also topped Hollins scoring with 14 points, followed by Forrest with 13 and Phillips with 10.
Virginia Wesleyan returns to competition in less than 24 hours, playing another ODAC game at Roanoke College at 4 p.m.