Cynthia Cooper-Dyke wanted her team to get out to a fast start in the season opener.
She got her wishes. The Women of Troy (1-0) opened the season with an 11-0 run and never looked back in a dominant 76-44 victory over Hawai'i (0-1) Friday evening at the Galen Center.
"I felt that if we got out and we played great defense initially, we would get in a better rhythm offensively and we did that tonight," Cooper-Dyke said. "Play defense, run and then finish. That's going to be our mantra all year long."
The Trojans forced 18 turnovers that led to 23 points and got 14 fast break points. They controlled the paint, outscoring the Rainbow Wahine 46-23 led by Kristen Simon's 16-point, 10-rebound double-double.
USC held Hawai'i to 29.8 percent shooting, including 20 percent in a seven-point third quarter for the Rainbow Wahine that saw the Trojans expand their lead to more than 30 points for the first time. The Women of Troy shot 50 percent for the game and made 45.5 percent of their three-point attempts.
"What I've been talking about all season long and all summer and preseason has been for us to get better every practice, every game," Cooper-Dyke said. "We got better tonight against Hawai'i. We came in focused. We played great defense and we executed offensively."
Jordan Adams played a super efficient game, scoring 11 points on 5-of-6 shooting, including making her only three-point attempt. She also had four rebounds, three assists with no turnovers and a steal.
Adams' 6-foot-1 height and ballhandling skills give her the unique versatility to play multiple positions from the point guard slot to down in the post. The Trojans now have another player in a similar ilk to their redshirt senior. While Adams is primarily a guard, freshman Ja'Tavia Tapley is a post that can bring the ball up the court, read a defense and find an open teammate. Tapley had a strong debut with 10 points, five rebounds, two assists, a block and a steal.
The Women of Troy return to action on Wednesday when they welcome UC Riverside to the Galen Center at 7 p.m.
Watch Cynthia Cooper-Dyke, above, talk about the Women of Troy's dominant 76-44 season opener and preview the rest of the 2016-17 season.
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