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Lady Monarchs Earn 20th Victory Of Season With 80-58 Over JMU

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: February 26, 2004
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Feb. 26, 2004

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NORFOLK, VA - Sophomore Lawona Davis (Port St. Lucie, FL) poured in a career-high 23 points, shooting a blistering 10-of-12 from the floor, to lead the Old Dominion women's basketball team to its 20th win of the 2003-04 season with a 80-58 victory over conference rival James Madison, 80-58, on Thursday night at the Ted Constant Convocation Center.

The Lady Monarchs improved to 20-6 on the year, collecting 20 wins in a single season for the 24th time in school history. Fifteen of those 20 wins season have come under head coach Wendy Larry, including the last 13 straight seasons. Additionally, Old Dominion improved to 15-1 in conference play. The Dukes fell to 11-16 overall and 6-10 in the CAA race.

Davis was among four Lady Monarchs in double figures which also included senior Monique Coker's 13th double-double of the season. The Bronx, NY native poured in 15 points and 11 rebounds in the victory, while senior Max Nhassengo (Maputo, Mozambique) collected 13 points and junior point guard Shareese Grant (Va. Beach, VA) added in 12. Both Nhassengo and Grant were perfect from the free throw line connecting all three and four attempts respectively. Additionally, Grant tied her career-high with nine assists.

James Madison's leading scorer, freshman forward Lesley Dickinson led her squad with 15 points while classmate Meredith Alexis narrowly missed a double-double with 10 points and nine rebounds. Shameena Felix was the other Duke in double figures with 12 points.

The visitors led just once in the contest scoring the first bucket of the game, but it wouldn't be long before the Lady Monarchs were holding a double-digit advantage. The opening seven minutes saw Old Dominion take a 16-4 lead and never look back. Back-to-back buckets by senior Duke guard Jody LeRose, who missed the first outing against the Lady Monarchs back on January 9th, brought James Madison under the double figure deficit, 18-10, midway through the half. However, Old Dominion followed by taking their largest lead of the half, a 14-point 27-13 edge, with 7:29 left in the first half. James Madison used a 5-0 run late in the first stanza to pull within nine, 35-26, but that would be the closest the Dukes would come against the 12-time defending CAA Champions. Nhassengo converted the traditional three-point play during the final minute to put the Lady Monarchs up, 38-26, at the half.

Old Dominion held the Dukes scoreless through the first four and a half minutes of the second half as the Lady Monarchs rattled off seven unanswered points for a 21-point, 47-26 edge. Shirley McCall went on to hit two free throws for James Madison, cutting the Duke deficit to 17, 49-32, with 13:38 remaining, but within three minutes the Lady Monarchs were enjoying a 20-point lead. The Lady Monarchs led by as many as 29 in the second half, capped off by back-to-back Nhassengo lay-ups that put Old Dominion up 74-45 with 2:35 left in the game.

The victory gave Old Dominion head coach Wendy Larry her 399th victory at Old Dominion. The Lady Monarchs will try to give Coach Larry her 400th Old Dominion victory on Sunday at the Patriot Center when they travel to meet the George Mason Patriots. Tip-off is at 3:00 p.m. and the game will be televised on Comcast Sports Network.

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