Herd Women Open Conference Schedule With 81-55 Win Over ECU

Tynikki Crook had a career night with 15 points

Tynikki Crook had a career night with 15 points

Jan. 5, 2008

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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall freshman Tynikki Crook set career highs in points, field goals, assists and steals as the Thundering Herd women's basketball team opened up its Conference USA schedule in dominant fashion, taking down defending champion East Carolina, 81-55, Saturday at the Cam Henderson Center.

Crook's totals included 15 points, seven field goals, three steals and two assists. She also added eight rebounds, falling two boards shy of her second career double-double.

Reigning C-USA Player of the Week, Kizzy Hart, also notched 15 points, her eighth-straight game with 12 or more points.

"I thought our defense to start the game set the tone for us and we were able to pick up that intensity and continue it throughout the game," Marshall head coach Royce Chadwick said following the game. "We're an inexperienced team, but we have some older players and it's important for us to come out and start right so we can pick it up from there."

Marshall (9-5, 1-0 C-USA) scored the first six points of the game and never looked back, leading the rest of the way. East Carolina (6-8, 0-1 C-USA) would cut the lead to 6-4, but a 25-7 run by the Herd would prove to be the difference in the game. Tynikki Crook was a large part of the run, scoring eight points, including three consecutive lay-ups to give Marshall the 20-point lead with just under six minutes left in the half.

The first-half lead grew to as many as 25 when a Kizzy Hart three-pointer gave MU a 41-16 lead with two minutes remaining while a three by LaCoya Terry of ECU cut the halftime lead to 23, 44-21.

East Carolina opened the second half on a 6-2 run to cut the lead to 19, but Marshall would not be denied, embarking on another run, this time 12-3, to open up a lead of 28 points six minute into the final half.



From that point on, the lead would not get below 24 points as Marshall cruised to the 81-55 win. The win marked the third time in as many years that the Herd opened up its C-USA schedule with a win.

Marshall was dominant in all phases of the game, finishing with 24 more points in the paint, 21 more points off turnovers and +5 in fast break points. The Marshall bench was also pivotal, outscoring ECU's, 28-15. The Herd also won the rebounding battle, edging the Pirates, 43-40, while committing eight less turnovers.

Meg Withrow and Alix Barnette rounded out the double-digit scorers, netting ten apiece. Alyssa Hammond scored nine, while Casey Baker was not too far behind eight. She also added six assists and three steals.

Leading East Carolina was guard LaCoya Terry, who finished with a game-high 20 points, including 4-of-5 from three-point range. Allison Spivey fell two rebounds shy of a double-double, finishing with ten points and eight boards.

The game rounded out a 2-0 day for Marshall as the men's basketball team downed Winthrop, 67-62, in overtime prior to the women's game. Chadwick commented on the success of both teams. "I can't tell you how happy I am for Donnie and Markel, they're playing really well. The things they've accomplished down the stretch is mental toughness and that helps my team," Chadwick commented.

"My girls can watch that and say man look at how hard they are playing and how well they are playing. It just makes us all better. I'm very excited for them and we're just glad we can hold up our end and go out and win some basketball games."

Next weekend, Marshall will make its first conference road trip of the season, starting with an 8 p.m. game at Memphis on Thursday before a 7 p.m. match at UAB on Saturday.