Lady Dogs defeat the Tide

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Mississippi State staved off a late Crimson Tide rally to pick up its second consecutive Southeastern Conference victory in Tuscaloosa, Ala. on Sunday in Coleman Coliseum. The win also is the first on an opponent's home court for the Lady Bulldogs this season.

State led by as many as 17 points in the final 20 minutes of the game, but the Crimson Tide did not fold, fighting back to within three points at 56-53 with 1:13 to play in the game, but MSU was able to hit free throws down the stretch to seal the win.

"They (Alabama) picked up the pressure in the second half," said MSU head coach Sharon Fanning. "We were able to weather the storm down the stretch."

In the opening half the Lady Bulldogs picked up right where they left off from Thursday's win against Kentucky. They opened the game with a 17-4 run to give them an early 13-point lead with 13:11 in the first half. They increased that lead to as many as 16 points twice in the first 20 minutes. MSU led 37-21 at halftime.

"This is a huge SEC win for us, especially to get one on the road," said Fanning.

In the first half, State took advantage of 17 UA turnovers, turning them into 18 points for MSU. The Maroon and White also shot well from the field, shooting 55 percent in the first 20 minutes, while UA shot 33 percent.

Tiania Burns led the way for the Lady Bulldogs in the scoring column with 20 points. Burns played a career-high 39 minutes. Junior Tan White finished with 17 points. She also dished out six assist and picked up five steals in the game. Rebecca Kates posted 11 points on the day. Kates was 3-of-4 from behind the arc. One of those three-pointers came at a critical point on the game for MSU during Alabama's comeback. Mamie McKinney had her best SEC game of the season with 10 points and 10 rebounds, her second double-double of the year.

"It's really good to see other people stepping up. That is what it is going to take to be a successful basketball team," said Fanning. "Today was a total team effort."

Monique Bivins led the Crimson Tide in scoring with 17 points. Kate Mastin finished with 14 points.

Next up for the Lady Bulldogs is another road trip to the state of Alabama with a trip to Auburn on Thursday. Tip off is set for 7 p.m. on the AU campus.


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