SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — The Lady Bears wanted one thing to be clear on Saturday, times have changed since January 17.
That’s the date Southern Illinois beat Missouri State in Carbondale. The Lady Bears left no doubt in Saturday’s 88-57 win at JQH Arena.
“Since that loss, I think that our focus has been different,” Lady Bears head coach Amaka Agugua-Hamilton said. “Even coming into this game, it was more of a revenge type payback game. Not to say that SIU didn’t play great the first time, because they did, but we didn’t play our best basketball. We just wanted to prove that we have improved since then and gotten better.”
13 Lady Bears saw playing time, with 12 of them scoring at least one point. Elle Ruffridge led MSU in scoring with a 16 point performance.
“Ever since we went to their place and played the way we did – it’s been motivating, since this far,” Ruffrudge said. “We’ve been really trying to focus on just us, getting better every single game – every single practice.”
The Missouri State bench scored 47 points combined. The bench outscored the starters with a 47-41 edge.
Jasmine Franklin was dominant on the boards, collecting 14 rebounds to go with her 10 points. Alexa Willard also scored in double-digits, finishing the game with 13 points.
The Lady Bears shot 50 percent from three-point range and 57 percent overall, while holding the Salukis to 15 percent from three and 35 percent overall.
Missouri State will play game two of its three-game homestand on Friday against Evansville.