ELIZABETH CITY, NC – The Winston-Salem State Lady Rams (10-6, 4-2 CIAA) had to stage a second half rally, but the team pulled off a 66-63 win at Elizabeth City State (3-12, 0-6 CIAA), Monday evening. The win ended a two-game skid by the Lady Rams that saw a pair of WSSU rallies fall short. After trailing the Lady Vikings 32-29 at the half, the Lady Rams outscored the Lady Vikings 37-31 in the second half to take home the win.
The Lady Rams took the win behind a strong overall team effort, shooting 43.1% from the field and overcoming 22 turnovers in the game. The effort saw an improved offensive effort for the Lady Rams as three players reached double-digit scoring in the game. Senior guard Jasmine Elum led the way for the Lady Rams with 16 points in the game while fellow senior forward Amanda Hairston added 14 points. Junior forward Dionna Scott added 10 points and led the Lady Rams' rebounding effort with six rebounds.
The Lady Rams took control of the game early, jumping out to a 14-8 lead at the 13:12 mark. The effort came after six straight points by the Lady Rams. Unfortunately, the Lady Rams' strong lead would dissipate after an 11-4 ECSU run that left the Lady Rams trailing 19-18 with 7:16 left in the half. The Lady Rams fell behind by as many as seven points, 29-22 with 3:49 left in the half. From there, the Lady Rams were able to cut their deficit down to just one point, 30-29 following a pair of free throws by junior guard Briana Wilder with 1:02 left in the half. From there, the two teams turned up their defense as an ECSU lay-up at the buzzer that left the Lady Rams trailing 32-29 at the half.
In the second half, the Lady Rams turned the tables early as Elum opened the half with six straight points to put her team back on top, 35-34 with 18:00 left. Once in control, the Lady Rams held off the Lady Vikings for much of the half, but suffered a slight slump midway through the half that allowed ECSU to take a 52-48 lead with 7:25 left to play. After erasing the deficit, the Lady Rams' battle with the Lady Vikings ensued as the two teams went back and forth for the remainder of the game. Neither was able to go ahead by more than three points. The situation was eerily similar to last season's meeting between the two teams as the Lady Vikings scored seven unanswered points in the final minute to seal the WSSU loss. However, tonight, it was a Scott lay-up with 00:32 left that put the Lady Rams on top for good, 64-63. Junior forward Jovonah Graham added a pair of free throws with eight seconds left to put the Lady Rams on top 66-63. From there, the Lady Rams turned on the defense as a missed ECSU three-pointer ended the game.
With the win, the Lady Rams improve to 4-2 in CIAA play and will return home on a high note when they host the Saint Augustine's Lady Falcons at Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Saturday. For more information on Lady Rams basketball, contact the WSSU Office of Athletic Media Relations at (336) 750-2143 or log on to www.WSSURams.com.