Nov. 9, 2007
BALTIMORE - Loyola rallied from a 10-point halftime deficit to win its first season-opener since 2001, 72-62, over Drexel in Reitz Arena on Friday night.
Drexel (0-1) shot 50-percent from the field in the first half and scored nine of the half's last 14 points to take a 33-23 lead at the break.
Delise Johnson made two free throws 26 seconds into the second half, extending the Dragons lead to 12, but that is the highest they would take it. After a Narissa Suber layup for Drexel at the 18-minute, 13-second mark, Loyola went on a 10-2 run, capped by an Erica DiClemente layup at 14:21 that cut the Dragons' lead to 39-36.
During that stretch, Loyola (1-0) held Drexel without an offensive rebound and forced two Dragons' turnovers.
"(Our run) started on the defensive end," said freshman point guard Candice Walker. "In the first half, we gave up too many offensive rebounds, so our main focus in the second half was to box-out and get the rebounds."
Drexel was able to push the lead back to eight, 44-36, with 10:39 remaining, but Loyola scored the next six points, and Tynisha Davis cut the Dragons' lead to 44-42 with 9:24 to play.
Ashley Alexander's layup with 8:36 remaining made it a one-point game, 46-45, less than a minute later. On the ensuing possession, Brooke Cornish missed a layup for Drexel. She then fouled Loyola's Kaitlin Grant in a scramble for the rebound.
Grant made both free throws to give the Greyhounds their first lead, 47-46, since the 16:59 mark in the first half.
The teams traded leads four times in the next four minutes until Vika Sholokhova's layup with 4:05 gave the Greyhounds a 54-53 advantage. Loyola would not trail the rest of the game.
Sholokhova scored four more points on an up-and-under layup and two free throws to give the Greyhounds a five-point advantage with just over three minutes to play.
Loyola was 12-of-12 from the free throw line, and made 25-of-31 from the line in the second half, to pull away for the win.
Sholokhova led all players with 14 points and 12 rebounds. All five Loyola starters finished in double-figures scoring. Wood and Alexander each had 13, Walker added 11, and DiClemente chipped in 10.
The Greyhounds had a 13:9 assist:turnover ratio, while two of their turnovers came on shot-clock violations. Walker had a game-high five assists and no turnovers in her collegiate debut.
Jasmina Rosseel led the Dragons with 11 points, while Gabriela Marginean and Delise Johnson each had 10.
The Greyhounds return to action on Sunday against Villanova with a 2:30 p.m. tipoff at Reitz Arena.