Marshall Survives Defensive Battle Against UAB

Special to HuntingtonNews.Net
Marshall Survives Defensive Battle Against UAB

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. For the second game in a row, Marshall women’s basketball used a monumental second half effort to earn a comeback victory over UAB on Sunday afternoon. After trailing by 13 points at one point in the first half, the Thundering Herd overcame the deficit in the second half to knock off the Blazers, 40-37.

Marshall improved to 15-11 (6-7 C-USA) and gave UAB its second home loss of the season. UAB, who was tied for second in C-USA standings, dropped to 18-7 (9-4 C-USA).

“We had to scratch and fight to hang around, but we earned every single thing we got tonight,” said head coach Royce Chadwick. “We kept our heads up and stayed in the game.”

This marks the second contest in a row that the Herd has knocked off the second-ranked team in Conference USA standings, defeating Memphis on Thursday 65-54.

The Marshall bench contributed 30 points, while Erica Woods was the only starter to register points in the game with 10. The sophomore guard was one board shy of a double-double, grabbing a team-high nine rebounds.

Two other players recorded double-digit performances including Shay Weaver with 11 and Lateidra Elliott with 10. Weaver accounted for the only two three-pointers Marshall would make all game, both of which were a catalyst to Marshall taking over the lead in the second half.

UAB boasted the No. 2 ranked defense coming into the contest and their defensive talent came on display early in the game. In the first half, the Blazers forced Marshall to commit 12 turnovers and limited the Herd to just 15 shots from the field.

The Blazers shot double the amount of shots during the first half with 30 and was able to jump to a 13-point advantage with the score at 19-6 in first 10 minutes of the game.

For the first 32 minutes of the game, UAB limited Marshall to just 25 points. It wasn’t until just under nine minutes left in the game when Weaver hit two three-pointers in a row and Elliott provided two layups that Marshall was really able to establish a consistent offensive production.

The 10-0 run gave Marshall its first lead at 35-33 with 4:00 left in the game. The Blazers cut the Marshall lead to three with 25 seconds left and set up two straight three-point opportunities for UAB’s Amber Jones in the last 15 seconds, but both attempts missed and the Herd held on to the lowest-scored win of the season.

Marshall’s defense was the star of the second half as the Herd outscored the Blazers 21-12 in the stanza. The Herd limited UAB to just four made field goals in the period, while forcing the Blazers to a 17.4 percent average in the field.

“Our defense was spectacular all night long,” commented head coach Royce Chadwick after the game. “We had a hard time finishing the defensive possession with a rebound, but in the last four or five minutes we really clamped down on the boards.”

Marshall struggled on the boards during the afternoon, tallying 34 rebounds compared to UAB’s 42. The Blazers dominated the offense glass, bringing down 21 offensive boards in the game, but the Herd only allowed UAB seven second-chance points.

UAB had opportunities in the game, shooting the ball 53 times, but was inaccurate in the field after shooting just 24.5 percent from the field. Marshall went 13-for-39 from the field for just over 33.0 percent.

Marshall will return to action on Thursday against Southern Miss. The game will take place in Hattiesburg, Miss. and is scheduled to tip-off at 8:00 p.m. ET.

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