Women Make Successful Tourney Start

Wichita State slowed the pace of the game, but it wasn't enough to prevent the WVU women's basketball team from recording its third win of the season.

West Virginia worked patiently against the more deliberate Shockers to record a 61-40 win in the opening round of the FIU/Herald Classic in Miami despite the best efforts of the Shockers to control the tempo and keep the Mountaineers from running. WVU got few fast break opportunities, but was still good enough defensively and in the halfcourt to get the win.

The absence of the running game also appeared to change WVU's halfcourt attack, as Mike Carey's squad attempted just six three-pointers, making just one. The pace also affected the Shockers (1-3), however, as they failed to place anyone in double figures in scoring.

Point guard Yolanda Paige, fresh off a record setting 18-assist game against Northwestern, showed her scoring ability by knocking in 18 points to lead the Mountaineer attack. Sherell Sowho had 16 and Meg Bulger added 13 to form the usual trio of Mountaineers in double-figure scoring. Ramika McGee, continuing her comeback from two season-ending knee injuries, matched her career high of five points.

West Virginia (3-0) got off to a good start and was never seriously threatened in the contest, leading by double figures at halftime and moving out to a 28 point lead at 55-27 with eight minutes to go in the game. From there, play deteriorated somewhat, leading to just 19 points combined for both teams over the last eight minutes.

Despite the sloppy ending, WVU still manged to shoot 45% from the field, and hit 12 of their 16 free throws.

The Mountaineers will face the winner of the Florida International-Elon game on Saturday evening at 7:00 p.m.

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