Starting Five Pushes Michigan Past Southern Miss

Nov. 19, 2009

Site: Ann Arbor, Mich. (Crisler Arena)
Score: Michigan 91, Southern Miss 54
Records: Michigan (3-0), Southern Mississippi (1-2)
Next U-M Event: Sunday, Nov. 22 -- at Kansas (Lawrence, Kan.), 2 p.m.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- All five starters scored in double digits, led by 18 points from freshman guard Dayeesha Hollins (Cincinnati, Ohio/Winton Woods), as the University of Michigan women's basketball team beat Southern Mississippi, 91-54, on Thursday (Nov. 19) inside Crisler Arena. The win moves the Wolverines to 3-0 on the season.

Joining Hollins in double figures were senior center Krista Phillips (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan) with 13 points, sophomore forward Carmen Reynolds (Hilliard, Ohio/Davidson) with 12 points and freshman Jenny Ryan (Saginaw, Mich./Nouvel Catholic Central) with 10 points. Junior guard Veronica Hicks (Chicago, Ill./Thornwood), who scored 12, and freshman forward Nya Jordan (Lathrup Village, Mich./Detroit Community) each posted six rebounds in the victory.

The Wolverines held Southern Mississippi's leading scorer Pauline Love, who entered the game averaging 25 points and 12 rebounds, to just seven points and six rebounds.

Despite owning a 17-point halftime lead, U-M's offense took a little bit of time to find its rhythm entering the second half, but Reynolds started things off with five points in the first four minutes of action and Hollins added six to push the U-M lead to 20 points. From there, the Wolverines coasted, never allowing the Lady Eagles to get closer than 22 points.

Michigan played efficient basketball, recording 21 assists on 35 made field goals, and was equally effective on the defensive side of the ball, posting six blocks and 14 steals.

Defense was the name of the game in the first half. U-M forced the Lady Eagles into four early turnovers and kept the ball out of Love's hands and jumped out to an early 19-5 lead. Phillips was a huge reason for U-M's early lead as she opened the game 4-of-5 from the floor and hit two free throws early to lead the team with 13 points in the opening frame.

Southern Miss made up some ground with a 15-6 run midway through the half to cut the lead from 22-5 at 12:28 to 28-20 at the 5:48 mark. Three-point shooting made all the difference for Southern Mississippi in the first half as the Lady Eagles hit 5-of-7 for 71.4 percent. It was the opposite for the Wolverines, who were 50 percent from the floor on 15-of-30 shooting but were only 5-of-13 (.385) from behind the arc.

The Wolverines open up an eight-game road trip at Kansas, currently ranked No. 19, on Sunday (Nov. 22). Tipoff is set for 2 p.m. CST at historic Allen Fieldhouse.

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