Joplin, Mo. - Thanks to career-best performances from Sharese Jones and Dominique Mosley, the Missouri Southern Lions women's basketball team defeated Southwestern Oklahoma State 99-83 this afternoon in their home opener at the Leggett & Platt Athletic Center.
Southern (1-1) was led in scoring by Jones, as the sophomore guard from St. Charles registered a career-high 29 points on 10-of-13 shooting from the field while going 7-of-10 from the free-throw line. Mosley added a career-high 27 points on 12-19 shooting from the field. Combining to grab 28 of the Lions' 48 rebounds, both Jones and Mosley ended with career-highs in boards as well as Jones grabbed 15 boards and Mosley chipped in 13.
Shawnee Phillips added 15 points off the bench, nailing three three-pointers while Alexis Fitzpatrick led Southern with 10 assists. Samantha Soyez added seven dimes of her own while scoring eight points.
Southwestern Oklahoma (2-2) was led in scoring by Sarina Sayama who finished with 16 points while Michelle Fisher added 14 points.
With the game deadlocked at 20 after the first ten minutes of play, the Lions went on a quick 7-0 run capped by a three-pointer from Shawnee Phillips, but the Lady Bulldogs answered right back with a 7-0 run of their own to tie the game at 27 with five minutes to play in the first half. A three-pointer from Nicole Hartzog and a layup from Jones pushed Southern's lead to five and they extended that cushion to seven as they went to the locker room at halftime up 42-35.
Shooting 50% (16-32) from the field in the first half, Southern continued their hot shooting in the second half as they opened the second stanza on a 11-5 run to take a 13-point (53-40) lead after a Mosley layup. Expanding their lead to as large as 25 (80-55) after a Jones layup and free throw with seven minutes to play, the Lions held off a late rally from the Lady Bulldogs that saw Southern's lead cut to as low as 14 (93-79) to secure the win.
The Lions shot an impressive 54.7% (35-64) from the field while going 7-18 (38.9) from three-point range and 22-28 (78.6) from the free-throw line. The 99 points the Lions put on the scoreboard was their highest output in nearly eight years as the last time they scored 99 or more points was on December 6, 2005 against Ozark Christian when they scored 104 points.
Southern held a 48-38 edge in rebounds over the Lady Bulldogs while picking up 25 assists. They also outscored Southwestern 44-34 in the paint.
The Lions return to action at home on Friday as they host the MSSU Pizza Hut/Fairfield Inn Thanksgiving Classic playing Avila (Mo.) (1-4) at 7 p.m at Leggett & Platt Athletic Center.