DETROIT, Mich. – For the third straight season the Cleveland State women's basketball team has started Horizon League play with back-to-back wins, as the Vikings picked up a 67-49 victory at Detroit Mercy on Sunday afternoon. With the win, the Vikings improve to 5-8 overall this season and 2-0 in #HLWBB play.
• Crockett, Slaney, Ely, White, Miller
• As a team, the Vikings held a 49-27 advantage in rebounds, including an 18-8 edge in offensive boards.
• The Viking defense forced Detroit Mercy into 20 turnovers, turning these miscues into 22 points.
• The Vikings finished with an 80-percent clip from the free throw line (20-for-25), including a 7-for-8 performance during the first half.
• With Sunday's win, the Vikings are now 2-0 to begin #HLWBB play for the third straight season.
• Nadia Dumas recorded a career-high with her 12 points against Detroit Mercy, marking the first double-digit scoring game of her career.
• With her six steals against the Titans, Jade Ely marked a career-high.
• Savanna Crockett recorded two blocked shots against the Titans, and has now recorded at least one block in 11 of 13 games, and has a team-high 20 blocked shots on the year.
The Vikings were able to get out to a quick 6-0 lead over the opening minutes of the contest, and then controlled play throughout the majority of the first quarter. Throughout the first period, Cleveland State was able to force Detroit Mercy into five turnovers, capitalizing on these miscues and turning them into six points during the first 10 minutes.
After the Vikings gained an 8-2 lead following a Savanna Crockett layup at the 6:45 mark, the Titans responded with an 8-4 run of their own, to close the gap to just two points at 12-10. Detroit Mercy was then able to post five of the last eight points during the opening quarter, knotting the score at 15-15 after the first 10 minutes of action.
The two teams then traded baskets and leads throughout the second quarter, until the Vikings were able to go on a 6-2 run over the final two minutes to gain a four-point lead at 36-32 heading into the halftime break. During this stretch, the Vikings got two points from Mariah White, and four from Rachel Slaney and Mariah Miller who combined to go 4-for-4 from the free throw line.
The Vikings were able to carry this momentum into the second half then, as they opened the third quarter with 12 straight points, extending their lead to 48-32 on a Jade Ely layup. During this stretch Cleveland State played solid defense, turning three steals into six points on a trio of baskets from Ely, Miller and Crockett.
After going cold from the field over the next few minutes, Crockett was finally able to convert a layup at the 2:23 mark, stopping a 9-0 Titan run to put the score at 50-41. Cleveland State then closed the frame with a 14-point lead at 55-41, following a pair of Ely baskets over the final 1:16 of the quarter.
During the final 10 minutes of action, Cleveland State was able to control play and hold a sizeable advantage, coming away with the 67-49 victory for the Vikings' second straight Horizon League win.
Cleveland State will return home for the first time during Horizon League play next week, hosting IUPUI at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, January 3.