Royals Overcome Slow Start For Big Win

Jourdyn Friend helped spark the EMU offense off the bench. (photo by Scott Eyre)
Jourdyn Friend helped spark the EMU offense off the bench. (photo by Scott Eyre)

The EMU basketball women were able to overcome a dismal first quarter to come back and beat University of Lynchburg 53-42 Saturday afternoon. The win is now the fifth in a row for the women improving their record to 7-7 on the season and 4-3 in the ODAC.

It was a slow start for the Royals in the first quarter as they started 1-for-12 from the floor with Lexi Deffenbaugh (Fishersville, Va./Wilson Memorial) making the only basket at the 7:46 mark. Tough defense by EMU kept them in the game despite the poor shooting, limiting Lynchburg to just 11 points in the quarter.

The second quarter was jump-started by the EMU bench. Constance Komara (Harrisonburg, Va./Harrisonburg) made back-to-back shots to start a 13-3 run for the Royals as they fought their way back into the game. Jade Payton (Berryville, Va./Clarke County) made great passes to Komara and Deffenbaugh to assist in the scoring run.

Jourdyn Friend (Richmond, Va./Meadowbrook) made a layup and two free throws to get EMU back within one point of the Hornets before Jess Washington (Chesapeake, Va./Great Bridge) scored the final four points of the quarter to give the Royals a 25-22 lead going into halftime.

EMU came out in the second half rejuvenated as they were able to get better production from their starters who all scored at least three points out of the team total of 20 for the quarter. Emily McCombs (Culpeper, Va./Eastern View) made a three pointer at the 5:37 mark to start an 11-0 run for the Royals as they began to build their lead.

The fourth quarter started with EMU leading 45-32. Washington scored the final basket for the Royals to make it 53-37. The Hornets held EMU scoreless for the final five minutes, but only scored five more points the rest of game.

Overcoming the slow start, EMU still shot 40% (22-55) from the floor and 20% (2-10) from three in the game while Lynchburg shot 21.4% (12-56) and 12.5% (2-16) behind the arc.

Washington was the leading scorer for EMU with 12 points while snagging eight rebounds and two steals. Krisak finished with nine points and Deffenbaugh with eight. Komara scored six points off the bench.

Maggie Quarles led Lynchburg with 12 points and Molly Shephard scored nine with six rebounds.

Next game for the Royals is on Tuesday, when they travel to nationally-ranked Randolph-Macon for a 7:00pm contest.