Dec. 15, 2013
FAYETTEVILLE, NC - Fayetteville State scored the game's first four points and never trailed in a convincing 77-56 win over West Virginia Wesleyan at Felton Capel Arena on Sunday afternoon.
"I thought it was a total team effort," FSU coach Eva Patterson-Heath said. "We had 21 assists, which meant we shared the basketball. We showed a sense of urgency in the first half."
Amber Calvin scored 14 of her 16 points in the first half, when the Lady Broncos (5-2) built a sustainable margin early on. After the Bobcats (2-6) cut the FSU lead to 10-9 at the 13:57 mark, FSU scored 12 points in a row to stretch the lead to 22-9. That gap didn't get closer than nine before halftime, thanks in part to Calvin.
After the Bobcats cut the lead to 32-22 with 3:49 to play before halftime, Calvin hit a 3-pointer to extend it to 13. Once WV Wesleyan cut it to 10 again, Calvin hit a jumper and another 3-pointer to make it 42-27 at the break.
In the second half, much like the first, defense was the key for FSU. In that period, FSU 10 of its 23 steals. Akysia Resper recorded a team-high eight steals in the contest, five coming after intermission.
It was the zone press that forced long cross-court passes the led to many of those steals.
"The point of the press is to keep the ball on the side, keep it out of the middle," Resper said. "Force them to make the long pass and allow us to get there. We did that today."
After the Bobcats cut it to 50-43 with 12:43 to go, Resper ensured that they'd get no closer. First, she grabbed a defensive rebound and took it coast-to-coast the other way for a layup. On the following possession, Amber Calvin rebounded a missed 3-pointer and took it the other way, before finding Resper for another layup. Those were the first four points of an 8-0 run that deflated all of WV Wesleyan's momentum.
followed with a layup and Calvin hit two free throws to extend the lead back to 58-43.
Three Lady Broncos joined Calvin in double-figures. Resper had 16 points, Shaquanza Manning had 12 off the bench and Deja Middleton recorded 14 points and nine rebounds. Calvin had a game-h8igh seven assists.
FSU goes to Lakeland, Fla., for a tournament starting Dec. 20 against Florida Southern.