FANNING-OTIS NOTCHES CAREER VICTORY NO. 600 AS MSU DOWNS SOUTH ALABAMA 63-47
STARKVILLE, Miss. – Mississippi State women’s basketball coach Sharon Fanning-Otis joined some elite company Wednesday night.
recorded career victory No. 600 as the Lady Bulldogs won their third
straight with a 63-47 victory over South Alabama at Humphrey Coliseum.
milestone is always special,” Fanning-Otis said. “It is a reflection of
the young ladies, the staff and the fans. I haven’t scored a point in
my coaching career. It is a credit to the players for the way they have
represented this program.
“Still, it is only one win and I want it to carry over to the next one.”
becomes one of 14 active Division I coaches with 600 or more victories.
A former head coach at both the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga and
the University of Kentucky, Fanning-Otis is now 600-445 in her 36
seasons as a Division I head coach.
In her 17th season at
MSU, Fanning-Otis has posted a 273-217 record. Fanning-Otis has led the
Lady Bulldogs to 11 postseason appearances, including the only six NCAA
appearances in the program’s history.
“When you achieve
records such as this, it is an important day,” Fanning-Otis said. “To
be able to do that with such a wonderful group of young ladies is what
makes this really special. Hopefully, there will be many, many more
wins this season.”
The Lady Bulldogs (6-1) were rarely
threatened after erasing an early 7-2 deficit. MSU scored the game’s
next 19 points, while holding South Alabama (5-2) scoreless for 9
minutes, 26 seconds.
“We were really doing a good job of
getting to the paint,” MSU senior Diamber Johnson said. “We pretty much
lived in the paint in the first half. Our shots were falling and we
were rebounding better. It was a really good stretch there and gave us
the separation we needed for the rest of the game.”
Lady Bulldogs shot only hit 1-of-11 3-point shots in the opening half
but did shoot 40 percent overall, while building a 29-17 halftime
advantage. Defensively, MSU held South Alabama to 14.7 percent shooting
in the opening half, as the Lady Jaguars at one time missed 13 straight
shots and finished 5-of-34 for the half.
South Alabama closed within
36-30 on a 3-point basket by Jennifer Johnson with 14:19 left in
regulation. The hosts tacked on the next six points to reestablish a
42-30 lead with 11:34 left.
The lead would grow to 14
before South Alabama took advantage of heavy foul trouble on MSU to
close within eight on two different occasions. Strong free throw
shooting and a reemerged inside presence allowed the Maroon and White
to close out a third straight win against the Lady Jaguars.
postgame ceremonies, Director of Athletics Scott Stricklin presented
Fanning-Otis with game ball, while the Lady Bulldog Booster Club also
presented a plaque.
“It was a great to be a part of this
win,” Johnson said. “Since I have been here four years, I feel pleased
to have played such a big part in the win. This is a special night for
her. Hopefully, it is just one more win and we can keep this thing
For the contest, the Lady Bulldogs hit 23 of 52
shots from the field (44.2 percent), 2 of 13 shots from 3-point range
(15.4 percent) and 15 of 22 shots from the foul line (68.2 percent).
The Lady Jaguars hit 14 of 65 shots from the field (21.5 percent), 4 of
26 shots from 3-point range (15.4 percent) and 15 of 24 shots from the
foul line (62.5 percent).
MSU held a 46-40 rebounding
advantage. The Lady Bulldogs had five assists and 17 turnovers, while
the Lady Jaguars had seven assists and 13 turnovers.
paced the Lady Bulldogs with 22 points, while Porsha Porter and Catina
Bett each added 11 points. Porter and Bett were both slowed by foul
trouble with each player finishing with four fouls. Bett had a
team-high eight rebounds and three blocked shots, while Johnson had
South Alabama received 16 points from Mansa El and 13 points from Sandra Peterson.