The Lady Bears kept the pressure on at the onset of the second stanza, outscoring SU 12-3 after Savannah Hill’s basket on the Bulldogs’ second possession of the half pulled the visitors to within 31-30. Garrison knocked down a pair of free throws to kick-off the spurt, then converted a basket in the paint at the 16:28 mark to push the MSU lead to five points. Jacque Griggs’s 15-footer pushed the Lady Bear advantage to 39-32, and Jasmine Malone drained a three-pointer with 13:57 to play to make it a nine-point game.
The Bulldogs (23-11) would claw their way back to within four points with by the eight-minute mark, but Garrison combined with Shorter to score the next 14 MSU points over a three-and-a-half minute stretch to put the game out of reach. Jaleshia Roberson got into the act as well, snapping an 0-for-15 shooting slump from three-point range by canning a long jumper from the right wing with 3:46 left, then scored four more points over the ensuing 1:18 to push the MSU lead to 19.
MSU’s 22nd victory of the season was made possible by another strong performance on the boards. The Lady Bears finished with a +13 edge in total boards, just one game after posting their best single-game effort on the glass in 24 years with a 62-rebound night against Oral Roberts.
The Lady Bears also committed a season-low seven turnovers and converted 13 Samford miscues into a 15-5 edge in points off turnovers. In addition to Garrison’s performance, the Lady Bears got a standout effort from Shorter, who just missed her fifth consecutive double-double with a 17-point, 8-rebound afternoon.
Missouri State (22-10) will continue is postseason home stand with a third-round WNIT contest Thursday against the winner of Monday night’s Illinois/Marquette second-round match-up in Champaign, Ill. Tickets for Thursday’s 7:05 p.m. game will be available beginning Monday (March 22) morning at 10 a.m. at the Missouri State Athletics Box Office inside the JQH Arena, or by phone at 417-836-7678.
Story courtesy of Missouri State Athletics.