WBB ends two-game skid
Jan. 6, 2011
Box Score | Quotes | Notes | Howell's Photos | Highlights | Press Conference
Halftime Performance by Russian Bar Trio
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Vanderbilt had been here before. A dominating first half. A large halftime lead. But, unlike the past two games where the Commodores had double digit leads slip away from them, Vanderbilt was not about to let its second half blues continue on Thursday against Mississippi State.
"I was glad to be winning again," Vanderbilt Head Coach Melanie Balcomb said. "We'd lost two in a row so I'm glad we put two halves together. We did a lot of work since that last game and all I could focus on was trying to keep them focused on what their task was, and not focused on what happened the last two games."
Vanderbilt (10-5, 1-1 SEC) entered Thursday's game after losing leads of 17 and 18 points at Virginia Tech and Ole Miss, respectively, so a large first-half lead seemed far from safe for the Commodores, especially against a Mississippi State (8-5, 0-1 SEC) team that had beaten Vanderbilt three straight times.
However, Vanderbilt ensured its lead would stick this time by extending its cushion to as many as 25 points in the second half despite shooting a season low 34.5 percent from the floor. The win moved Vanderbilt to 8-0 at home and was the Commodores' eighth straight win in an SEC home opener.
Vanderbilt fell behind the Bulldogs 4-3 before opening up the game with a 16-0 run to take a 19-4 lead with 10:30 to play. Mississippi State never recovered thanks in part to a suffocating defensive performance that limited the Bulldogs to just 27.6 percent shooting.
The 44 points by Mississippi State were the fewest points by a Vanderbilt opponent since limiting Georgia to 44 points on Jan. 14, 2010.
Vanderbilt was led by center Stephanie Holzer, who produced her third double-double of the season, finishing with 14 points and 13 rebounds. Jence Rhoads added 12 points and Jasmine Lister scored 11.
Vanderbilt was without the services of freshman Christina Foggie, who missed the game due to post concussion syndrome following a concussion that was suffered Dec. 1 at Bowling Green.
The Commodores will continue their homestand on Sunday when they face Auburn at 2 p.m.
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