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James Madison Hands ODU Second Home CAA Loss of Season, 65-59

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: February 21, 2010
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Feb. 21, 2010

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NORFOLK, Va. - For the first time since joining the CAA in 1992, the Lady Monarchs (14-11, 12-3 CAA) lost two home conference games in the same season, after a 65-59 loss to James Madison (20-6, 10-5 CAA) today. The Lady Monarchs nearly erased an 18-point deficit, getting it back to just six in the second half, but James Madison would hold off the Lady Monarchs for the win.

In front of a season-high crowd of 5,179 the second half run proved not enough in the Annual Hoops for a Cure Pink Out game. Junior Jasmine Parker would lead the way for Old Dominion, scoring 13 points and adding four rebounds, four assists and two steals. The league's second-leading scorer, Dawn Evans, finished with a game-high 28 for the Dukes.

ODU remains in first place, however, as the second place Drexel Dragons fell in overtime to Hofstra.

In the first half, Parker tied it up at 11 points apiece with a long three from the left wing at the 11 minute mark. The Lady Monarchs were held scoreless for nearly eight minutes after that, though, leading to a big JMU run. The Dukes 15-0 run gave JMU a 26-11 lead, with under three minutes to play in the first half.

Rookie Jackie Cook finally got ODU back on the board with a made free throw with 2:36 remaining. She added a fall-away baseline jumper on the next ODU possession to pull back within 12, 26-14. JMU would answer, scoring four of the next five for a 15-point halftime lead, 30-15.

JMU's leading scorer, Evans, would lead the Dukes in the first half, scoring nine points, as the Dukes finished the first 20 minutes over 50% from the field (13-for-25). The two teams combined for 31 turnovers in the sloppy first half, combining for 13 points scored off of giveaways.

The Lady Monarchs got six points from Jasmine Parker on a pair of three-pointers, but was able to play just nine minutes due to foul trouble. Jackie Cook added three points and four rebounds, but Old Dominion was just 5-for-28 from the field, shooting just 17.9% in the first half. The 15 points scored was the second-lowest total in a half this year for Old Dominion.

Evans hit a three and Kanita Shepherd added a jumper in the paint early in the second half to extend the lead to a game-high 18, 35-17. ODU answered with a small run, scoring the next seven points, including a Carolann Cloutier three that cut the lead to 11 with under 14 minutes to play, but JMU's Courtney Hamner responded with one her own on the next possession to get it back to 14, 38-24.

ODU heated up in a big way for the next several minutes, going on a 10-2 run to get back within single digits for the first time since the first half. First, after a pair of Jessica Canady free-throws, the Lady Monarch press forced a turnover and Parker found Tia Lewis under the basket for a tough layup to pull back within 10. Canady's first bucket of the game would come next getting ODU back within eight, 38-30.

The two teams traded baskets on the next possessions, but then a layup from Lewis and another great pass from Parker to Cook cut the lead to six, 40-34, with 9:24 remaining.

JMU would get the lead back up to 12 with under six to play, and would shoot well from the free-throw line in the waning minutes to seal the win. ODU cut the lead to six two more times, including for the final score, but JMU escaped becoming the first ever team to beat ODU at home in back-to-back seasons.

Canady scored a team-high 14 in the game for ODU, including nine from the charity stripe. Lewis added ten points to round out the double-digit scoring behind Parker's 13, and Lewis also had six rebounds and three steals. Off the bench, Jackie Cook added seven points and six rebounds.

Evans finished with 28 points after breaking the Constant Center record for scoring last season, with 36. She went a perfect 9-for-9 at the free-throw line and added seven assists in the victory.

The Lady Monarchs will stay at home for a game on Thursday night against cross-water rivals, William & Mary. Tip is set for 7:00 p.m. in the second to last home game of the season.

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