Va. - Behind double-doubles from Amber Easter and Janaa Pickard, the George
Mason women's basketball team upended visiting Morgan State, 65-54, Friday
night in the Patriot Center. Three Patriots scored in double figures as Mason improved
to 2-1 on the young season, while Morgan State dipped to 1-2.
Pickard and Joyous Tharrington combined for 45 points in the victory as Easter
posted a team-high 16 points and 13 rebounds. Pickard drained 15 points and
secured 11 boards to tie her career-high on the glass, while Tharringon chipped in
14 points to set a career-high. Saunders contributed seven rebounds and dished out six assists.
Patriots dominated on the glass, pulling down 58 rebounds to Morgan State's 32.
Mason finished with 24 offensive rebounds led by five from Shavonne Duckett.
40.0 percent from the field in the first half, Mason carried a 31-21 lead into
the halftime break over the Lady Bears. Tharrington and Easter each posted
eight points to lead Mason offensively as the Patriots outrebounded Morgan
State, 24-15, including eight offensive boards which Mason converted into 11
second chance points.
19-11 off a pair of Duckett free throws at 8:11, a Pickard triple handed Mason
its first double-digit lead of the period at the 6:37 mark. The redshirt junior
gave Mason a 13-point lead, 26-13, at the fourth media break, but a 6-0 Morgan
State spurt coming out of the timeout cut the score to 26-19 with 2:10 on the
clock. Talisha Watts and Easter combined to put Mason back up by 10 as Easter closed
the half with a jumper for the 31-21 halftime score.
State cut its deficit to eight points out of the halftime break with a jumper
from Tracey Carrington, but it would be the last single-digit deficit the Lady
Bears would hold until a trey from Bianca Jarrett at the 8:20 mark made it a
49-40 ballgame. Morgan State used Mason's cold shooting from the floor during
that span to cut the score to 51-46 with 5:30 left to play.
pair of free throws from Kyana Jacobs and a jumper from Pickard pushed Mason
back out in front by nine, 55-46, with 3:32 left to play in the contest. The
Lady Bears came within nine with under a minute to play, but Saunders hit a
jumper for the final 65-54 score.
led Morgan State offensively with a game-high 24 points as the Lady Bears
converted 23 Mason turnovers into 25 points. Jarrett also the Lady Bears on the
glass with seven boards and recorded six of Morgan State's 17 steals in the contest.
last time Mason recorded 50 or more rebounds in a contest occurred last season
when the Patriots secured 53 against Colonial Athletic Association foe Hofstra
on February 12, 2012.
Mason returns to the court traveling to New Mexico for
the Aggie Hotel Encanto Thanksgiving Tournament, Nov. 23-24. The Patriots take
on host New Mexico State on Friday to open the tournament and will face either
Drake or UC Irvine on Saturday.