Nov. 27, 2010
ST. THOMAS, Virgin Islands (AP) – West Virginia’s walkthrough practice before its game against Iowa State was held inside a hotel meeting room with tape on the carpet to simulate a half court.
The main focus was on the 3-point line because coach Mike Carey knew if his team could defend that, the Mountaineers would win.
Senior guard Liz Repella scored 15 points to lead No. 10 West Virginia to a 64-53 victory over No. 19 Iowa State on Saturday in the Paradise Jam.
Madina Ali added 13 points and a team-high nine rebounds for the Mountaineers (6-0), who won the tournament’s Island Division.
“We knew they had some shooters so we just had to stay out on them,” said Carey, whose team opened a 36-26 halftime lead and never trailed. “We never gave any of their players outside looks and we forced them to drive. That was the big difference.”
Kelsey Bolte scored 13 points to lead the Cyclones (4-1), who also got 10 points from Chelsea Poppens before she fouled out.
Iowa State knocked down a season-high 14 3-pointers Friday in a 64-59 win over No. 21 TCU, but West Virginia held the Cyclones to only two.
“We had to bust up their offense,” said Repella, who was honored as the Island Division MVP. “I guarded Bolte and our main goal was to just stay out on them.”
Freshman guard Taylor Palmer made three of West Virginia’s seven 3-pointers in the first half. Another freshman guard, Brooke Hampton, started in place of the injured Sarah Miles and contributed seven assists with no turnovers.
“We had some young guards step up today and they really had a great game,” Carey said. “They may be young but those girls know the defense and they know what we do.”
Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly said 10 of his team’s 11 players are in their first or second year.
“It was a great experience for our girls and I know they learned a lot,” said Fennelly, whose team went 2-1 at the tournament. “West Virginia’s defense was very good. They are one of the best defensive teams in the country and they did a great job of taking away the three ball.”