CORPUS CHRISTI – Texas A&M – Corpus Christi had a solid showing on Sunday afternoon, as it beat A&M – International 76-50 in an exhibition matchup in the Dugan Wellness Center.
It was a team effort offensively for the Islanders, as four different members of the A&M – Corpus Christi team had double-digit point totals. It was a pair of seniors leading the way offensively, as Ashley Darley and Taryn Gregory both scored 12 points. Fellow senior Brandi Huff picked up 11 points to go along with seven rebounds, while the other double figure scorer was junior Shola Adebayo with 10 off of the bench. In all, 11 out of 12 Islanders were able to find their way into the scoring column.
The Islanders shot 38 percent from the field, as well as from behind the arc and went 17 of 23 from the free throw line. A&M – Corpus Christi also dominated the glass, outrebounding the Dustdevils 54-39.
It was a quick start for A&M International, as after Jasmine Shaw missed a layup for the Islanders shortly after the tip, Jessica Woo knocked down a jumper to give the Dustdevils an early 2-0 lead. The Islanders then got two quick layups, with the second coming off of a steal by Taryn Gregory to give A&M – Corpus Christi its first lead of the game before scoring eight of the next four points to extend the lead to five.
However, Samantha Chacon, who finished the game with a team-high 17 points for the Dustdevils, knocked down back-to-back field goals to cut the lead to just one with 12:08 left in the first half, forcing second-year head coach Royce Chadwick to call a timeout.
The talk from Chadwick got the Islanders refocused in a big way, as A&M – Corpus Christi would go on a 20-0 run over the next eight minutes and 15 seconds. During that time six different Islanders would put the ball in the net, while the Dustdevils missed eight field goals over that stretch. It wasn't until Jessica Prieto hit a jumper for A&M – International with 3:53 left that the streak would end, but the game was all but over, as the Islanders had a 31-12 lead at that point.
If the Dustdevils had any notion of coming back it was eliminated quickly, as the run stopper would not get a run going for the visitors. The Islanders kept their foot on the gas pedal, scoring the next 10 of 13 points to cap off a 30-4 run to take a huge 41-15 lead into the locker room at the half.
In the first half some poor shooting from outside the arc was one of the factors in A&M International's scoring drought, missing all 10 of its three point attempts. Furthermore, the Islanders defense allowed just six field goals in the first 20 minutes of play. A&M – Corpus Christi on the other hand shot 50 percent from downtown, while knocking down 13 field goals.
Going into the second half it was more of the same for the Islanders, as the offense kept on rolling. The Dustdevils were able to score more points in the first two minutes of the second half than they did in the entire final 12 minutes of the first half with six, the only problem for them was that the Islanders scored seven during that stretch. On the power of a 9-3 run, A&M – Corpus Christi opened up its biggest lead of the game, as a 59-24 score had the Islanders up by 35 with 12:46 left to play.
The Dustdevils would have by far their biggest run of the game, as the Islanders went cold during nearly a three minute stretch, while the Dustdevils scored nine straight, cutting the lead to 26.
From that point on, the game was more back and forth with both teams exchanging buckets. With 15 seconds remaining Brittany Mbamalu knocked down a three to become the 11th Islander to make her way into the scoring column to give the Islanders a 76-50 lead, which would end up being the final score.
A&M – Corpus Christi will open its regular season next weekend, as the Islanders will host the Emerald Beach Islanders Classic on Nov. 8-9 with all games being played in the Dugan Wellness Center. The Islanders first game of the tournament will be at 4:30 p.m. on Nov. 8 against Western Illinois. They will then play either UAB or Fairfield on Nov. 9 at 7:30 p.m. depending on who wins and loses in the matchups on Friday. For tickets for these games and throughout the season call 825-BALL (2255) or visit GoIslanders.com.
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