MONROE, Miss. (WDAM) _ Before Saturday, the last time Joye Lee-McNelis left the University of Louisiana-Monroe campus with a basketball victory in hand, she was a freshman player for the University of Southern Mississippi.
Flash forward 38 years.
Lee-McNelis, who is in her 15th season at her alma mater, and her Lady Eagles exited Fant-Ewing Coliseum with a 57-42 victory over the Lady Redhawks.
Louisiana-Monroe (0-3) buried itself earlier with one of the worst first halves in program history, scoring three points in the first quarter and six points in the second quarter.
USM (3-1) led 29-9 at halftime.
Amber Landing led the Lady Eagles with a career-high 12 points and team-high seven rebounds. She blocked seven shots, five in the first half, handed out two assists and came up with a steal.
Respect Leaphart had a team-high 13 points, four rebounds, three steals, two assists and a blocked shot.
Kelsey Jones and Shonte Hailes each had eight points and five rebounds. Hailes, who also had three steals, had scored at least 11 points in USM’s first three games.
Louisiana-Monroe’s Lauren Fitch came up with 13 points and six rebounds, while Amber Thompson scored just four points, but came down with a team-high seven rebounds.
USM will return to the court at 6 p.m. Tuesday, when the Lady Eagles welcome the University of Mississippi to Reed Green Coliseum.