Josie Howell, Sports Editor
On Wednesday Oct. 30 in their exhibition game against Berry College, the Jacksonville State Women’s basketball team dominated on the court putting an impressive triple digit score on the board, with a final score of 104-37. The Gamecocks well outshot, out-rebounded and overall outplayed the Vikings throughout the entirety of the matchup.
Graduate-senior Destiney Elliott led her team with a total of 25 points for the Gamecocks. Following Elliott in points is junior Kiana Johnson who contributed 15 and junior Taylor Hawks with 14. Jessie Day almost hit double digits scoring nine points for her team. As a team overall, Jax State had a dozen players put points on the board in this preseason contest.
Defensively, the Gamecocks also saw Elliott pull down seven rebounds, JuToreyia Willis with six, and Day and Chloe Long both with five. Jacksonville State’s defense was also able to score 54 points against the Vikings off of turnovers alone.
In the first quarter of the game, the Gamecocks took the lead right away without losing it at any point in the game. The Vikings were able to keep up for the first quarter only being behind six points by the end of it, but by the end of the 2nd quarter, the Gamecocks were already ahead by thirty points going into half-time. Throughout the game, the Gamecocks consistently increased their lead, eventually beating the Vikings in a 67-point lead.
The Gamecocks were able to score around 40 percent at both the three-point line and in the field while averaging over 80 percent at the free-throw line. Meanwhile, Jacksonville State’s defense kept the Vikings field goal shooting percentage to 25 percent and their three-point average to 33 percent.
“[The game] was very exciting. Last year, we struggled scoring but we have placed a huge emphasis on scoring this year. We knew it would put us in better positions to win if we could simply score better,” said Elliott. “I think that [the win] spoke to our character and discipline. We trust each other a lot more and we all want the same thing, which is to win, regardless of what it takes.”
Elliot previously played for Samford University and later came to play for the Gamecocks in the 2018-2019 season. In last year’s season, Elliott started all 30 games, the team with 327 points and recorded a team-best 41 three-pointers. Fans are excited to see what Elliot will continue to do on the basketball court.
“Personally, I think there is always room for improvement, for myself and as a team. There was a lot of good in the game but there were also some breakdowns, [but] we went over it in the film and corrected it. I think if we continue with this mindset we will be fine,” said Elliot. “The atmosphere that JSU brings is a totally different vibe that’s satisfying. My teammates are more like my sisters and have become my best friends. JSU is just a great place to be and playing basketball here just makes it even better.”
The Gamecocks will be playing Florida A&M on Saturday Nov. 9 at Pete Mathews Coliseum. Tip off will begin at 2 p.m. Fans can watch the game on ESPN plus or tune into the game at WLJS 91.9. FM.