Women’s basketball win four in a row

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Written by Michael Marzzacco

The Radford women’s basketball team was in action this past week with three games, two of them at home.  First up for the Lady Highlanders was a Saturday afternoon tilt on Feb. 7 vs. Presbyterian from the Dedmon Center.

The Highs were victorious as their offense shined in the 75-68 win.

Aisha Foy led Radford with 23 points, it was the second time this season she eclipsed the 20 point mark.  Ayana Avery added 13 points while Janayla White scored 12.  As for the Radford offense against the number two defense in the nation, the Highs shot 43.5 percent from the field which includes 57.9 percent in the second half.  As a result, the Lady Highlanders scored over 24 points above the Blue Hose’s season average.  The 75 points scored by the Highs were the most a Presbyterian opponent had scored against them all season.

On Feb. 10, the Lady Highlanders hosted the Longwood Lancers from the Dedmon Center and got a 55-45 victory but it didn’t come easy.  After Radford built a 21-point lead with just over eight minutes to go, Longwood came back on a 12-0 run that the Highs had to withstand.  The Radford offense struggled as they surrendered a season-high 29 turnovers in which 10 of them came in the final six minutes of the contest.

It was a seven-point game with 49 seconds left, 52-45.

“We knew Longwood was gonna try and trap us so we had to make sure we were looking for each other and move the ball in the right places, and find each other,” said junior Foy.

Despite these offensive woes, the Highlanders tied their season high mark for three-pointers, sinking ten three’s, five of them were by senior Avery, who led the scoring for RU with 15 points.  Foy added 12, with four three-pointers.

Freshman Jayda Worthy finished with 11 points and seven rebounds.  The Highs also outrebounded the Lancers 42-26.

“We knew that we had a higher advantage over them,” said Worthy, “We knew we had to attack the boards offensively and defensively, and I think we did a good job on that tonight.”

With the win the Highlanders improve their record to 14-10 overall and 11-4 in the Big South.  “It’s a huge accomplishment to be on a team like this,” said Avery, “I don’t think I’ve been on a team that’s been this good since I’ve been here so I hope we can keep it up and hopefully go into March feeling pretty good about ourselves.”

After the game, head coach Mike McGuire said, “First of all, I want to credit Longwood.  For them to be short-handed and to play as hard as they did tonight is a testament to their players, their coaches and their program.  We are fortunate to win this game.”

On all the turnovers RU had and Longwood getting back in the game, McGuire added, “Our team is better than that, they are smarter than that, and they are more experienced than that.  That’s why I got high expectations on them, because they’ve proved they could do it.  I just don’t want to see them finish a game like that, especially after building a 21-point lead.

On Valentine’s Day, the Lady Highlanders hit the road to take on Charleston Southern.  RU would prevail 64-57.   Foy led the Highs with 19 points including 11 from the charity stripe.  The Radford offense shot 42.2 percent from the floor including 22 in the paint.  Avery and Claudia Quevedo each added 8 points including two three-pointers.  Jordynn Gaymon and White combined for 18 of the Highs 38 rebounds.

After going 3-0 on the week, RU improves their record 15-10 overall and 12-4 in the Big South, second place in the conference.  The Lady Highlanders also clinched a first round bye in the upcoming Big South Tournament.  The 12 conference wins tie the program record for most league victories in a single season.