NORFOLK, Va. (NSUSpartans.com) – Jalynn Holmes led all scorers with a career-high 23 points, leading five Norfolk State players in double figures, as the Spartans picked up their first win of the year in convincing fashion, 96-66, over Salem University on Sunday afternoon at Echols Hall.
Shekinah Howard chipped in with a career high of her own, pouring in 18 points off the bench for the Spartans (1-1), who shot 53.5 percent from the floor. E’Lexus Davis also scored 18, Jaiden Morris had 14 and Ta’Liyah Edmonds notched her first career double-double with personal bests of 11 points and 17 rebounds. Howard also grabbed 10 boards for her first-ever double-double as NSU enjoyed a 56-36 edge on the glass.
The Spartans shot 64 percent in the opening quarter, outscoring the visiting Tigers (0-3) 27-12 in the stanza. Davis and Holmes then scored four points apiece to start the second quarter, and NSU held Salem without a field goal for nearly five minutes to start the period as the lead swelled past 20.
Later in the quarter, Morris capped an 11-0 NSU run with a three-point play to give the Spartans their biggest lead of the half, at 46-14.
Salem hit seven 3-pointers in the second half, but the Spartans shot better than 50 percent in both of the final two quarters themselves to come away with the comfortable victory. Another traditional three-point play, this one by Armani Franklin, gave NSU its largest lead of the night at 92-56 with 3:20 left in the game.
All seven Spartans who played scored. Aside from the five in double figure, Franklin added seven points, six rebounds, five assists and three steals, while freshman Niya Fields added five points, six assists and a pair of steals. Fields and Davis tied for team-high honors with six assists apiece. Holmes also grabbed seven rebounds.
Edmonds notched the most rebounds by a Spartan since Khadedra Croker also had 17 in a game against Maryland Eastern Shore Feb. 24, 2018.
Nerea Arambarri Fernandez scored 21 to lead Salem. Daniela Quesada added 14 and Alicia Smith 13 for the Tigers.
NSU returns to action Tuesday at Liberty. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.