Hot-shooting Bulldogs get easy home victory

Staff Writer

Four guards took the floor for the No. 7 Mississippi State Bulldogs to start Thursday night’s game against Georgia State and the Lady Panthers never found the defense to defend it.

The Bulldogs worked from inside to outside against Georgia State’s defense knocking down a school-record 65.6 percent of their shots on the way to a 106-50 win. State had five players in double figures led by Teaira McCowan and VIctoria Vivians who notched 19 points each.

“When they’ve got four guards that are as good as that and can shoot the three, pass it and drive it, it was a tough match for us,” Georgia State head coach Sharon Baldwin said. “They’ve got a good basketball team and there’s no doubt about it.”

MSU (2-0) rattled the Lady Panthers from the outset when they jumped out to a 30-11 lead after one quarter and finished the first half on an 11-0 run with eight-straight made field goals for the 63-22 advantage.

State head coach Vic Schaefer was happy with the Bulldog offense from the outset, especially with how they shared the ball in the half court.

“When you make the extra pass, you’re going to have somebody wide open,” Schaefer said. “I was really pleased with the extra pass and our shooters having their feet ready.”

Contributions came from all over for the Bulldogs, who got 14 points and 4-of-8 shooting from 3-point range by Blair Schaefer. They also had 12 points, seven assists and no turnovers from Morgan William.

None played a bigger role than ZIon Campbell, who grabbed her first career double-double in 25 minutes of play. Backing up junior center McCowan, Campbell had 13 points and 11 rebounds while going a perfect 6-of-6 from the field.

“Hard work pays off,” Campbell said. “I have more confidence in myself and that’s the key for me to have a night like (Thursday).”

The Bulldogs let off the gas in the second half but still was able to cruise to the 56-point win. They were without starting power forward Ameshya Williams who coach Schaefer said was dealing with “personal issues.”  

Mississippi State set a school record for shooting accuracy with its 40-of-61 performance. The Bulldogs also had a 38-21 rebounding advantage.