SALISBURY, NC – The Winston-Salem State Lady Rams (12-9, 6-5 CIAA) found a way to win in a 64-60 victory over the Livingstone College Lady Blue Bears (10-9, 5-4 CIAA), Saturday evening. After trailing by as many as 19 points near the midpoint of the second, half, the team turned on a stellar defensive effort to take the win and snapped a three-game skid. The win also gave the team a big Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Southern Division win.
The Lady Rams overcame a sluggish offensive effort as the team finished the game shooting just 32.3% from the floor and committed 17 turnovers in the game. The team was especially hampered in the first half when they shots 22.2% from the floor. The Lady Rams took the win behind the offensive duo of senior guard Jasmine Elum, who led the way with 18 points, including 15 second half points and junior forward Dionna Scott, who also scored 18 points in the game. Junior forward Jovonah Graham also had a stellar effort with her second straight double-double as she recorded 17 points with 11 rebounds.
The game began on a very sour note for the Lady Rams as the team struggled early as they failed to score for the first five minutes of play and fell behind, 0-6 with 14:34 left in the half. The Lady Rams answered the call with nine unanswered points to take a 9-6 lead after a pair of Scott free throws at the 11:41 mark. The Lady Rams would keep things going as they held a 17-13 lead with seven minutes left in the half. It was then that the troubles arose for the Lady Rams as the team managed just two points for the remainder of the half. A pair of Elum free throws at the 5:29 mark were all that the team could muster for the final seven minutes of the half as the Lady Rams took a 29-21 deficit into the locker room at halftime.
Though the second half had similar beginning for the Lady Rams the ending turned out to be very different. The Lady Rams continued to struggle early in the second half. After an Elum jumper at the 17:14 mark, the Lady Rams pulled within eight points, 36-28, the Lady Rams went five minutes without a field goal and fell behind by 19 points 50-31 with 12:24 left to play. The Lady Rams would make their stand and more midway through the half. After cutting their deficit down to 16 points, 56-40 with 8:49 left, the Lady Rams went on to outscore the Lady Blue Bears 24-4 in the remainder of the game. The effort included some stellar defense as the Lady Rams held Livingstone to just one field goal in the final eight minutes of play and just two free throws. After a three-pointer by junior guard McKenzie Weston pulled the Lady Rams within one point, 59-60 with 2:30 left to play, the Lady Rams took the 61-60 lead on a Graham rebound and putback at the 1:51 mark. From there, the Lady Rams kept their stellar defensive effort going and held the Lady Blue Bears scoreless in the final minute of play and went on to take the big win.
With the win, the Lady Rams improve to 6-5 in CIAA play and a 2-3 record in the CIAA Southern Division. The team will return to the road for their next action when they head to Raleigh to take on Saint Augustine's University, next Saturday in a 2:00 p.m. game. 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.