SALISBURY, Md. – The Salisbury University women's basketball team rode another hot start to another blowout victory, trouncing the Stevenson Mustangs, 84-55, on Tuesday night at the Maggs Physical Activities Center.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- For the third straight game, Lauren Fortescue knocked down a three-pointer on the Sea Gulls' opening possession. After the Mustangs converted one free throw, Kaylee Otlowski took over and scored the next six points, taking a Fortescue feed for a layup at the 7:27 to give Salisbury an early 9-1 advantage.
- Jada Welbon's three at the 5:28 mark made it 12-2 Salisbury. From there Stevenson went on a 5-0 run, with Michelle Mesquita hitting a jumper and making one-of-two at the line to get the Mustangs within 12-7 with 4:10 to go in the first quarter.
- The Sea Gulls seized momentum back as Ashlynn Burrows nailed a jumper, then after another solitary Mustang free throw, Fortescue drilled another triple to make it 17-8. Salisbury got a handful from the line in the midst of a 12-3 quarter-closing run, ballooning the Sea Gull lead to 24-10.
- Abby Wilkinson opened the second quarter with a steal and a layup, then after a pair of perfect free throw trips from Otlowski and Fortescue, Wilkinson connected from deep to make it 33-14 Sea Gulls at the 6:44 mark.
- Much like the first, the second quarter became a battle at the charity stripe, with the teams combining for 21 free throw attempts in the period. Fortescue drained a pair at the 4:33 mark and answered a Stevenson pair with a quick layup to make it 39-21. Laci Johnson got the Mustangs back on the board with a triple, but Salisbury answered with two more Fortescue foul shots and a layup from Wilkinson to go up 43-24 with 2:08 to go.
- Wilkinson converted three-of-four free throw attempts over the final minute and a half to put Salisbury up 48-24 at the break.
- Stevenson never got closer than 20 in the third quarter as the Sea Gulls began knocking on the door of a 30-point lead. Up 53-32 at the 5:34 mark, Wilkinson connected again from the field, then after a Salisbury defensive stop Wilkinson drove coast-to-coast through the entire Mustang defense for a layup. On the very next Sea Gull possession it was Wilkinson in the driver's seat finding Kylie Webb underneath the basket for a layup to make it a 6-0 run and 59-32 Salisbury lead with 4:08 to go.
- Hailey Ader's deep jumper pushed the Salisbury advantage to 67-38 at the end of the third, at which point the home side by and large emptied the bench for the rest of the game. The Sea Gull reserves connected on seven of their 13 shots in the fourth quarter with seven different players scoring a bucket.
- Stevenson orchestrated an effort to get back within 21 points as Laci Johnson's three made it 73-52 at the 5:11 mark. From there the Sea Gulls tightened up and closed the game on an 11-3 run, with Tori Rumbaugh finding Kylie Elser for a layup to finish off a 29-point win at 84-55.
SALISBURY GAME NOTES
- Abby Wilkinson provided a huge spark off the bench for the Sea Gulls, scoring a career-high 19 points (5-of-9), knocking down eight of her 10 free throw attempts. Wilkinson also tallied five rebounds, four steals and two assists in just 15 minutes of action.
- Kaylee Otlowski notched her 23rd career double-double and second of the season, netting 16 points (6-of-9) and hauling in 15 boards, plus two blocks.
- Lauren Fortescue set a new season high with 15 points (3-of-10), going 7-of-8 from the charity stripe while also dishing out four assists.
- Ashlynn Burrows and Hailey Ader each contributed six points in reserve roles.
- Salisbury shot 43.5 percent (27-of-62) from the floor, assisting on 21 of their 27 field goals. Tori Rumbaugh led the team off the bench with five of the Sea Gulls' 21 helpers.
- The Sea Gulls made a season-high 33 trips to the charity stripe, shooting 72.7 percent (24-of-33) from the line.
- Salisbury turned the ball over 20 times but still maintained a plus-margin by forcing 22 Mustang giveaways. The Sea Gulls outrebounded Stevenson 53-28, including 19-7 on offense.
- The Sea Gulls have won consecutive games for the first time this season, improving to 4-2. Salisbury has won its four games by an average margin of 33 points.
STEVENSON GAME NOTES
- Aysia Ferguson and Laci Johnson shared the team lead with 10 points apiece.
- Emori Jeselskis contributed nine points off the bench, while Morgan DeBeary added seven.
- The Mustangs shot 31.9 percent (15-of-47) from the floor and converted only 58.3 percent (21-of-36) of their free throws.
- The Sea Gulls wrap up a four-game homestand with a matchup against the Rowan Profs on Saturday afternoon.
- Tipoff is slated for 2 p.m. with coverage beginning on the Sea Gull Sports Network (SGSN) at 1:45 p.m.
Salisbury University is a proud member of NCAA Division III with primary membership in the Coast-to-Coast Athletic Conference, along with the New Jersey Athletic Conference for football and the Metropolitan Swimming and Diving Conference for men's and women's swimming. With over 500 student-athletes in 21 varsity sports, SU is recognized as one of the most competitive intercollegiate athletics programs regardless of division, and dedicated coaches and staff that foster excellence on-and-off the field. The Sea Gulls have celebrated 22 team national championships, 24 individual national champions, 186 conference championships and 41 Academic All-Americans.
To learn more about the tradition of excellence with Sea Gull Athletics, visit www.SUSeaGulls.com or on social media @SUSeaGulls.