|Redbirds defeat SIU, 1-1 for the weekend|
|Written by Todd Marver, Senior Staff|
|Monday, 21 January 2013 14:45|
After falling to Evansville on Jan. 17 at Redbird Arena, for the ISU women’s basketball team’s first conference loss at home of the season, the Redbirds (12-6, 4-2 MVC) rebounded with an 89-41 victory over Southern Illinois Saturday night.
“I’m really proud of the team for the way they responded after our loss to Evansville,” ISU head coach Stephanie Glance said. “We had a film session and talked about stats and intangibles. The main focus of this afternoon was defense. I would say if we touched the ball, we got it. That’s one of the intangibles we talked about.”
The Redbirds’ 89 points against the Salukis marked the highest scoring output in a game this season for ISU. In addition, the 41 points scored by SIU matched a season-low for an ISU opponent this season.
In the game against Evansville two days prior, the Redbirds were outshot and outrebounded, but they turned the tables against SIU to get more rebounds than their opposition (53 to 30) and held the Salukis to a lower shooting percentage than their own (48.4 percent to 25.4 percent).
“I felt this was one of our best defensive games and on the boards,” Glance said. “To hold a team to 25 percent for the game and 20 percent from the three-point line and outrebound them by 23, those are huge stats for us.”
Five Redbirds finished in double figures including senior guard Candace Sykes (19 points), sophomore forward Maddie Oliver (15 points; career-high), senior guard Jamie Russell (14 points), sophomore forward Janae Smith (13 points and nine rebounds) and freshman guard Alexis Foley (10 points; career-high).
“At our meeting yesterday, [Glance] challenged [the post players] to run the floor a little more,” Oliver said. “Janae [Smith] and I really came out and established that right away. A lot of my baskets were on fast break run outs, which doesn’t usually happen too often, with some really great passes from Alexis [Jenkins] and a couple from Janae [Smith].”
SIU scored the first four points of the game. But with the Salukis clinging to a 6-3 advantage just over two minutes into the contest, SIU did not score a point for the next 6:36.
The Redbirds capitalized on the Salukis’ scoreless drought with a 20-0 run including six points from Russell and senior guard Alexis Jenkins’ five points to grab a 23-6 lead with 12:18 left in the first half.
ISU continued to extend its lead, outscoring SIU 11-2 including five points from Smith to open up a 34-8 advantage with 7:22 remaining in the opening half. The Salukis scored the next five points to cut their deficit to 21 points at 34-13 with 6:06 until halftime.
From there, the Redbirds went on a 9-0 run via Sykes’ five points to go up 43-13 with 3:38 remaining in the first half. SIU outscored ISU, 5-2 to close out the half with a 45-18 Redbirds’ advantage heading into the halftime break.
Forty-five points is now the most the Redbirds have scored in the first half of any game this season, while 18 points is the fewest allowed by the Redbirds before halftime in 2012-13.
ISU opened the second half on a 10-2 run to extend its lead to 59-27 with 13:46 remaining in the contest. From there, the Salukis outscored the Redbirds, 9-5, to close their deficit to 28 points at 64-36. But ISU responded with a 19-2 run to go up by 45 points, 83-38. The Redbirds ended the game outscoring the Salukis, 6-3 to win, 89-41.
ISU concludes its three-game home stand at 7 p.m. Friday at Redbird Arena against Indiana State.