7-14 • 1-9 ACC
15-7 • 6-5 ACC
|12||Lauren Evans, Uju Ugoka|
Feb. 3, 2013
CORAL GABLES, Fla. - The University of Miami women's basketball team was looking to regain some momentum against Virginia Tech on Sunday. Coming off of two consecutive losses to ACC opponents UNC and Duke, the Hurricanes came out strong against the Hokies for a 68-42 win at the BankUnited Center.
"It's a great feeling," said UM head coach Katie Meier. "How we responded to adversity this time was better. We just focus on the positive and ignore the negative."
Leading the charge for the Canes was sophomore guard Michelle Woods, finishing with 15 points and five rebounds. Senior guard Stefanie Yderstrom added 11 points and three steals after being held scoreless in the previous game against Duke.
Kick-started by a layup by senior center Shawnice "Pepper" Wilson at 15:25 in the first, the Canes went on a 14-4 run in five minutes and stretched the lead to eight. Michelle Woods took the Canes' first lead of the game, 9-8, with a jumper at 14:14. Capping off the run was a three-pointer by freshman guard Caprice Dennis, her first field goal in nine games.
"We had two great runs," said Meier. "Our tempo and guard play was huge. McGuire and Woods had great control. Virginia Tech tried to shut out Pepper and Stefanie, so our guards had to step up."
Yderstrom scored her first points since Jan. 24, hitting two free throws with 2:41 remaining in the first to give the Canes an 11-point lead. Junior forward Maria Brown (six points, five rebounds) extended the lead to 16 on a jumper with just seconds remaining, giving the Canes a 39-23 lead at halftime.
Miami pulled further away in the second half, with Yderstrom scoring nine of her 11 points. The Canes led by as many as 28 several times, first hit with 13:03 remaining when freshman forward Keyona Hayes (eight points, 11 rebounds) sank a jump shot.
The Hokies, led by Evans' 12 points and Uju Ugoka's 12 points and 13 rebounds, were held to 20 percent shooting and scored only 19 points in the second half. They were also outrebounded by the Canes, 47-39.
"Every game we want to crash the boards and we were able to execute that today," said Hayes.
Sophomore guard Suriya McGuire had 10 points and four assists for the Canes, and Wilson was close to a double-double with nine points and nine rebounds.
The game was played as the Austen Everett Foundation honored its first recipient. Founded by former UM soccer goalie Austen Everett, who died of non-Hodgkins lymphoma in 2012, the foundation aims to connect cancer patients with professional and collegiate teams. On the team bench to watch the win was Deja Webster, the first person to realize Everett's dream. Webster has Stage Three Hodgkins lymphoma and just finished her final round of chemotherapy.
"It's inspirational," said McGuire. "Life could be so much worse. We use it as a motivation."
The Hurricanes hit the road to face Clemson on Thursday in South Carolina. Tip-off is at 7 p.m.