The ODU women’s basketball team pass Norfolk State, 76-47, for the sixth consecutive victory

Through Harry mini

NORFOLK, Virginia – The Old Dominion women’s basketball team ended the fall semester on a roll.

The Monarchs overcame a nightmarish first quarter and passed rival Norfolk State, 76-47, Sunday afternoon at Chartway Arena.

It was the sixth straight win for ODU (8-2), who takes a short break for final exams before continuing to play at Appalachian State on Saturday.

ODU led Norfolk State, 7-4, after a first quarter in which the Monarchs were stifled by the Spartans’ zone defense. The Monarchs were held scoreless for the first five minutes, and at one point the teams combined to take just 2 of 21 shots.

ODU made 2 of 12 and led only because Norfolk State only made 2 of 18 shots.

“Norfolk State’s zonal defense has made us think too much,” coach DeLisha Milton-Jones noted.

But the Monarchs regrouped in the second quarter, unleashed their counterattack, and quickly took control.

Talea Washington, Syracuse’s transfer, got things started with a quick three-point shot 23 seconds into the second quarter, then increased the lead to 17-6 three minutes later with another three-point shot.

Junior Azia Hudson had a three-point shot with 1:29 to go that took ODU to a 15-point lead, and the Spartans didn’t come close the rest of the way.

Ajah Wayne, a senior guard from Birmingham, Ala., was honored ahead of the game for breaking the 1,000-point barrier, a feat she accomplished in a 67-50 victory over Saint Joseph’s at the Van Chancellor Classic in Katy, Texas. She led ODU with 16 points on Sunday and has 1,084 career points.

Wayne is ranked 29e among ODU’s career scorers and could finish in the top 10 if she continues to score at the same pace throughout next season. Due to the pandemic, Wayne has another year of eligibility beyond this season.

He was presented with a game ball with his name and “1000 dots” tattooed on his skin.

Wayne credited his teammates when asked about the pre-game ceremony. “I couldn’t have done it without them,” she said.

Ajah Wayne 1000 points

And while head coach Milton-Jones agreed that “it takes a village” for a player to score 1,000 points, she noted that last year when the Monarchs won three games in three days in the Conference USA tournament, and almost won on day four as well, that “Ajah was carrying this team on his back”.

Iggy allen quickly came out of a one-game crisis – she scored just two points against Bowie State last week – totaling 15 points and tying her season high with 15 rebounds. Allen and Wayne both provided acrobatic shots in the second and third quarters, when ODU outscored the Spartans, 46-22.

Washington added 12 points and Amari Young ten.

ODU shot well, making 25 of 52 shots, for a record 48.1%. And that’s a good thing, because the Monarchs have recorded 31 turnovers, a season-high, and if they hadn’t shot well, the game could have been a lot closer.

Milton-Jones has brought in 10 newcomers this season as well as four returning starters, and while the Monarchs had a few hiccups early on, they’re now shooting at full speed.

“I’m sure some people are surprised that we were playing so well so early,” said Milton-Jones.

ODU stumbled in a home opener to George Washington, 47-45, then lost to VCU, 71-48, a game in which the veteran point guard Mariah adams missed due to a death in the family.

ODU rebounded with three wins in the Van Chancellor Classic, including a 59-45 win over Texas Tech, the Monarchs’ second this season against a Power 5 team.

ODU won all six with an average of 26 points, a statistic a bit skewed by Wednesday’s 70-29 victory over Division II Bowie State.

The Monarchs also won with strong defense, limiting their opponents to 46 points per game in the last six games.

Milton-Jones said the chemistry is great on the pitch because it’s great off the pitch.

“Our players eat together, live together, fight together and cry together, like a family,” she said.

“They are a very close team who trust each other and believe in each other. If the chemistry wasn’t right, we wouldn’t be on a six-game winning streak.”

After playing Appalachian State, the Monarchs venture to Temple on December 22.

After the winter break, the Monarchs open their Conference USA season with home games on Dec. 30 against the CRF and Jan. 1 against Florida Atlantic.

Play Notes
Old Dominion wins sixth consecutive game, longest winning streak under coach DeLisha Milton-Jones. This streak is the second longest in Milton-Jones’ career behind eight games under Pepperdine in January and February 2019.

The Monarchs dominate their opponents by 20.7 points per game during their six-game winning streak. During this streak, ODU is averaging 66.8 points on 0.427 shots with 15.2 assists per game. Defensively, Old Dominion forced 24 turnovers per game during their run.

ODU’s 76 points on Sunday are his second-highest in a game this season. The Monarchs shot a season record 48.1% from the field against the Spartans.

Norfolk State shot 31.6% from the field, becoming the fourth team to miss the 35% mark on the field against ODU this season. The Spartans’ mark of 0.182 in depth was the third lowest percentage by an opponent.

The Spartans become the third team, and the second in a row, to commit at least 30 turnovers against ODU. The Monarchs entered the day ranked in the top 40 in Division I for forced turnovers per game.

After its release in 16 points, Ajah Wayne now has 1,084 career points. She ranks 29th all-time to score at ODU and is one point behind Sharron Francis. Wayne has led ODU by scoring seven times this season and now has 60 games with at least ten points in his career.

Iggy allen notched his second double-double of the season and the 13th of his career, with 15 points and 15 rebounds, a season record. She was 7 of 9 from the foul line.

Amari Young posted 10 points and five rebounds while going 4 for 4 on the field. This is the first time Young has scored at least 10 points without missing a shot from the ground.

Azia Hudson had two of his four 3-point attempts and now has back-to-back games with multiple treys. Hudson has hit a triple in four of the last five games, going 7 of 16 in that span.

Talea Washington set a new career high with 12 points while reaching a personal best three to 3 points. Washington has gone to 3 of 5 deep on Sunday and 6 of 12 at long range in the last three games.

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