NEW ORLEANS, La. – The women’s basketball team opened the 2011-2012 home season with an 83-63 win over the Florida Memorial Lady Lions on Saturday in The DEN.
Four Loyola players garnered double-digit point numbers. Senior guard Keiva Council led the Wolfpack with 21 points, while junior guard Jasmine Brewer notched 18 points and six rebounds. Junior Megen Berner and sophomore Amy Moody added 13 points each.
“It was great to start off with a win at home,” said head coach Kellie Kennedy. “We came out of the gates and played extremely well. I thought we played a good first half. During the second half, we got into some foul trouble so we had to sub quite a bit. As a result, we started second guessing ourselves.”
Loyola forced 27 Lady Lion turnovers and held a decisive 29-7 advantage from points off turnovers. The ‘Pack led as many as 24 points in the first half with all five starters contributing.
“Even though we won the game by 20, I still found some things we need to fix,” added Kennedy. “We are trying to pick up our defense and put some pressure on people. We did a great job on converting on those turnovers.”
Loyola opened the game with a 16-2 lead, holding Florida Memorial under 10 points over the first 10 minutes. The Wolfpack forced eight turnovers during that first stretch.
Both teams traded baskets over the next couple of minutes or so, until a 17-3 Loyola run gave the Wolfpack a 39-13 advantage at the 5: 14 juncture of the first half. Keiva Council and freshman Janeicia Neely led the way scoring 12 of the 17 points during the run. Florida Memorial quickly changed the pace, ending the half with a score 48-24.
While Loyola came out sloppy, Florida Memorial came out blazing causing three Loyola turnovers. The Lady Lions outscored the Wolfpack 5-10 in the first five minutes of the second half. From there, Florida Memorial slowly closed the margin to within 14 with 7:41 left in the game. Despite the valiant effort, the Lady Lions could not hold on as Loyola racked up their second win on the season.
Seven Loyola players saw at leas 13 minutes of action as the ‘Pack was able to utilize their depth throughout.
For its next game, Loyola heads across the street to Tulane on Friday. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m.