Lady Eagle hoops soar into quarterfinals of WNIT, defeats Eastern Michigan 76-65

Lady Eagle hoops soar into quarterfinals of WNIT, defeats Eastern Michigan 76-65

This is news release from Southern Miss athletics

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Before the second largest crowd of the season, the Southern Miss women's basketball team used an 18-2 run over a span of 5:14 in defeating Eastern Michigan 76-65 in the third round of the WNIT Wednesday night.

Southern Miss improved to 25-10 while EMU ended its season at 24-13.

Tamara Jones led all scorers with a game-high 23 points to go with 10 rebounds. Alex Coyne, who had two clutch shots as the shot clock was winding down, ended with 11 points, six assists and four rebounds. Brittanny Dinkins came off the bench to add 10 points and five rebounds.

Eastern Michigan jumped out to a 4-0 lead to start the game before the Lady Eagles got a deep three from Jones. The teams traded a pair of baskets before EMU scored nine unanswered points for the 15-5 lead. Southern Miss made a run and cut the lead to three after scoring seven straight points. From there, the teams traded baskets for the next five minutes. The Lady Eagles got a three from Coyne to make the score 26-24. EMU answered right back on back-to-back buckets, but the Lady Eagles also had a pair of baskets to keep the score within two. EMU led 36-32 at the half.

Brooke Rhodes hit a three-pointer to start the second half, but answered with an 11-0 run in taking a 47-35 lead. Ashley Folsom added a pair of free throws but EMU was able to continue to match the Lady Eagles point-for-point in keeping a double-digit lead.

With EMU leading 51-39 with 14:39 remaining in the game, Southern Miss mounted its comeback as the Lady Eagles scored nine unanswered points to cut the lead to 51-48. After an EMU basket, Coyne found Voche' Martin underneath for the basket. After a defensive stop, once again, Coyne was able to find Jones underneath for the basket and the and-one. Jones completed the three-point to tie the game at 53-53. Southern Miss then took its first lead of the game at the 10:18 mark when Martin scored on a short jumper then followed with another basket. EMU tied the game on a three throw and three-pointer with 7:52 remaining. From there, Southern Miss reeled off the next seven points in taking a 64-57 lead. For the final 4:05, the Lady Eagles outscored EMU 11-6.

Southern Miss held a 42-36 edge in rebounds and outscored EMU 32-14 on points in the paint. The Lady Eagle defense held EMU to 35.5 percent shooting in the second half. After having 15 first half turnover, the Lady Eagles had only five in the second half.

With the win, the Lady Eagles advance to the quarterfinals where they await the winner of Thursday's Missouri at Michigan game. The quarterfinal matchup will take place March 28-30 at a site to be determined.