No. 10 Mississippi State women rout Murray State 124-43
STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — Coach Vic Schaefer had no remorse about Mississippi State’s 81-point margin of victory over Murray State.
Jessika Carter had career highs with 25 points and 18 rebounds, and the 10th-ranked Bulldogs set a school record for points in a game as they coasted to a 124-43 victory on Friday night.
“I think we’re getting better and we made some strides tonight,” Schaefer said. “We played really well and I’m not going to apologize for that and (outscoring Murray State) 32-4 in the third quarter was pretty impressive. And I love our transition game right now and the way we’re attacking the rim.”
Carter was 8 of 16 from the field and 9 of 10 at the free-throw line. Half of her rebounds came on the offensive end and she also had two assists.
“That team (Murray State) might be weary from being on the road and they played night before last. I know they are well-coached but they just happened to run into a team tonight that played really well. We set the tone out front and Jessika’s 25 (points) and 18 (rebounds) were pretty special,” Schaefer said. “I’m proud we got to play as many kids as we did and as many minutes that they played.”
Rickea Jackson had 16 points for the Bulldogs (3-0), while Yemiyah Morris added 14 points off the bench. Andra Espinoza-Hunter and Myah Taylor finished with 11 points apiece, and Promise Taylor had 10.
Carter set her career highs despite just playing 20 minutes. Her previous best was 19 points earlier this week against UT-Martin.
“I feel like I can do so much better,” Carter said. “I should’ve finished more and I could get easier buckets. But as long as I go hard in practice against Promise and Yemiyah, I will continue to get better.
“It’s good to have that production off the bench, too. We have three players we can rotate and the people off the bench can really help us.”
Alexis Burpo led Murray State (1-2) with eight points and Laci Hawthorne had seven. The Lady Racers shot just 29.6% from the field and made just 1 of 11 beyond the arc. Murray State also had 34 turnovers and the Bulldogs scored 47 points off those turnovers.
Mississippi State also dominated the boards 54-33 and shot 51.6%. The Bulldogs made 8 of 20 beyond the arc and converted 22 of 29 free-throw attempts.
Behind Carter, Mississippi State took control early. Carter had 12 points and 10 rebounds in the first quarter as the Bulldogs built a 34-7 lead.
Mississippi State continued to expand that advantage and led 57-23 at halftime. The Bulldogs shot 47.8% from the field in the opening half, while Murray State shot 36%. The Lady Racers had 17 first-half turnovers, while Mississippi State had a 26-16 rebounding advantage at the break.
Murray State: The Lady Racers finished off a tough opening stretch in which they faced two top 10 teams in the first three games of the season. Murray State opened the season with a loss at No. 9 Louisville.
Mississippi State: The Bulldogs have yet to be tested after three games and likely won’t have a tough matchup the rest of the month. Mississippi State had scoring margins of 33 and 36 points in its first two wins before Friday’s beatdown.
Murray State: The Lady Racers travel to Lipscomb on Tuesday.
Mississippi State: The Bulldogs close out a four-game homestand on Monday, hosting Troy.