The Vanderbilt women's basketball team improved to a perfect 3-0 with an 88-42 win over USC Upstate on Wednesday, November 16, at Memorial Gym.
On the receiving end were freshman Kady Schrann, who scored a game-high 15 points, and Stephanie Holzer, who scored 14 points while grabbing 13 rebounds. Holzer is the first Commodore this season to register a double-double.
USC Upstate (0-3) was led by 13 points from Hannah Ohl. She added three assists and three rebounds. Tee'Ara Copney joined her in double-figures with 10 points.
The play of the two freshman guards, Morrison and Schrann, was especially important for Head Coach Melanie Balcomb because of what it could mean for the future.
"These games are especially important for them," Balcomb said. "Just being able to see the ability they have. They played better each game and are getting more comfortable with what they're doing. Maggie had her best game distributing the ball. I thought Kady does what she does with her confidence and athleticism."
Also in double-figures for Vanderbilt were Tiffany Clarke, who notched 11 points and grabbed six boards, and redshirt freshman Clair Waitkins, who scored 10 points and added three blocks. It marks the second time in three games the Commodores have had five players reach at least 10 points.
In addition to distributing the basketball and hitting open baskets (Vanderbilt shot 52.1% from the field), the Commodores hit the glass, grabbing 51 rebounds. Vandy pulled down 19 offensive boards, while USC Upstate grabbed just 23 total rebounds. It marked the first 50-plus rebound performance for Vanderbilt since pulling down 52 missed shots versus Mississippi State on February 17, 2011.
Vanderbilt had another impressive opening half, as they led 42-16 at the break. The Commodores were keyed in the frame by a 21-0 run over nearly eight minutes that turned a 14-11 VU lead into a 35-14 VU lead. Balcomb was pleased her team re-focused effort on defense during the run.
"I went with Elan (Brown) and Jordan (Coleman), our two better defenders, for size as well as speed to match-up with them," said Balcomb. "They were a smaller team and it's hard to match-up with us so I went with our athleticism and three quick guards and we built that lead by generating offense through our defense."
Morrison and Schrann were also pleased with the defensive effort during the spurt.
"We start every game on the defensive end and that's where we get our energy," explained Morrison. "If we start forcing turnovers and getting them flustered, it makes it a lot easier for us to get out and run."
The Commodores return to action on Tuesday, November 22, when they host Sam Houston State. Tipoff at Memorial Gym is set for 7:00 p.m.