Dec. 15, 2013
HARTFORD, Conn. - The combination of a long layoff followed by a long road trip seemed to take a toll on the Vanderbilt women's basketball team on Sunday.
But the Commodores broke out of the funk just when it mattered most.
Finishing the game with an 18-9 run, Vanderbilt earned a hard-fought 65-56 road victory over Hartford at the Chase Arena in Hartford, Conn., to extend their winning streak to five games.
It was Vanderbilt's first game since Dec. 3, and was also the Commodores first game without freshman star Rebekah Dahlman. The sharp-shooting guard, who leads the SEC in 3-point percentage and is a defensive catalyst for Vanderbilt, is out indefinitely after having two procedures to dissolve a blood clot last week.
In her absence, the Commodores (8-2) needed someone to supply an extra dose of energy, and Jasmine Lister took on the assignment.
After being hampered by foul trouble in the first half, Lister scored 14 points and made a series of pivotal plays in the final 20 minutes to help Vanderbilt escape with the win. Lister, who had a team-high seven rebounds and three assists, finished 4-of-6 from the floor and 5-of-5 at the foul line.
The Commodores trailed by as many as nine points early in the first half, and found themselves locked in a 47-47 late in the second half before putting together the game-ending run to finally pull away.
"Give credit to Hartford; they outworked us today," said Vanderbilt head coach Melanie Balcomb. "We didn't play with a sense of urgency until the final four minutes of the game. ... But it was good for us to get out of here with a win."
Heather Bowe also had a huge game, scoring 11 points on 5-of-10 shooting. She also had six rebounds, two steals and two assists.
Christina Foggie, the SEC's leading scorer, was held to a season-low eight points but scored two huge buckets in the second half. Marqu'es Webb also finished with eight points.
Perhaps showing the effects of not having played a game in nearly two weeks, the Commodores got off to a slow start. After Bowe scored the game's first basket, Vanderbilt surrendered eight straight points and eventually saw the deficit grow to as many as nine points, 13-4.
Then Vanderbilt came to life.
Back-to-back baskets by Webb got the Commodores rolling, and they outscored Hartford 27-12 in the final 13 minutes of the half to take a 31-25 lead into the locker room. During that surge, Bowe scored in the paint to give Vanderbilt a 20-19 advantage, marking the Commodores' first lead since the opening minute.
Schrann and Webb came off the bench to give Vanderbilt a big spark. Webb scored eight first-half points and Schrann added six.
Vanderbilt will return to the court Wednesday when the Commodores travel to James Madison.