Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

February 2, 2014

Lady Blues stay perfect in 2014

By BRIAN WOODSON
Bluefield Daily Telegraph

BLUEFIELD — The Lady Blues just keep on winning.

Bluefield State continues to be perfect in 2014, with Shae Mebane contributing 18 points, 12 rebounds, and three steals, leading the Lady Blues to a 66-47 win over Alderson-Broaddus on Saturday afternoon at Ned Shott  Gymasium.

Up next is a home game on Wednesday with Chowan, with the Lady Blues (9-9) having won five in a row and nine of their last 10 games, with that lone loss coming in a exhibition at Division I George Washington.

“We will get ready for Wednesday night and try to stay undefeated in the new year,” Bluefield State head coach J.J. Oliver said.

Alderson-Broaddus (2-16) pulled within 30-28 at the break, but the Lady Blues outscored the Battlers 36-19 in the second half to pull away for the 19-point win, holding the opposition under 50 points for the second time in three games.

“Overall as a team I think we really played a great defensive effort to hold them under 50 points,” Oliver said, “and continue a trend that we have done during this winning streak.”

Mebane was dominant inside, whle Tasia Nolan added 11 points, five rebounds and four assists, and Bluefield High School product Shay Gravely contributed 10 points, five boards and four assists. Kearah Jefferys provided eight points, five boards and four more assists.  

“We started out a little slow and then we got on a roll right there with about 7 minutes to go in the first half,” Oliver said. “We went up by 11 and then we got a little lackadaisal and we let them get back in the game right there at the end of the first half so we went in with a two-point lead at halftime.”

It was all Blues after the break, which forced 16 Alderson-Broaddus turnovers, while committing just 10 of their own. Bluefield State also outrebounded the Battlers 42-30, led by Mebane.

“We took care of the ball and once again we came out and Shae Mebane did an excellent job of controlling the paint which made them sag down in the lane and get our guards open for some shots,” Oliver said. “In the second half we actually knocked down some of those open shots that we got.”

Alderson-Broaddus was patient, at least early on, led by Natalie Smith with a team-high 10 points. Nautica Davis added nine for the Battlers, who made just 31.5 (17-54) of their shot attempts.

“Coming out in the second half I think we did a better job defensively shutting out the dribble-penetration that caused us some problems in the first half,” Olivers said. “Probably about 50 to 60 percent of their possessions went down to 10 seconds on the shot clock.

“We were doing a good job, I think we had two or three shot clock violations and we took care of the ball for the most part. We had six or seven turnovers in the first half and three or four in the second half.

“Those are the things we are looking to constantly getting better at.”

Bluefield State got contributions from 12 players, including nine with at least 12 minutes on the floor.

“Everybody who is playing is contributing,” Oliver said. “I think that makes the game more fun when everybody knows that we can count on everybody on the floor to give us something.”