BOCA RATON, Fla. (ODUSports.com) – Old Dominion (4-3, 1-2 C-USA) won its first Conference USA contest of the season with a 71-56 victory over Florida Atlantic (2-5, 0-3 C-USA) on the road Friday evening.
Junior Ajah Wayne turned in her third double-double of the season, compiling a season-high 23 points and 14 rebounds. Senior Victoria Morris and junior Aziah Hudson were also in double digits with 16 and 13 points, respectively.
The Monarchs took an early advantage, not allowing FAU to score a field goal for the first 5:50 of action. Despite the Owls narrowing the ODU lead down to five late in the third quarter, the Monarchs led wire-to-wire, shooting 52% from beyond the arc, draining 10 three-point field goals, the most in that department this season.
"I felt that we started the game exactly how we intended to, which is high intensity on the defensive end," expressed head coach DeLisha Milton-Jones. "We got out to where we had an 8-0 lead and that was all predicated off of the work we've been putting in as a group on the defensive end."
Wayne put ODU on the board first with a layup in the first minute of action. The Monarchs wasted no time offensively, scoring on four-straight possessions. Following the Owls' first field goal of the game, a combination of four, three-point field goals from Morris, Hudson and Mariah Adams sent ODU into the second quarter with a 25-8 lead over FAU. Just as she ended the first quarter, Hudson opened the second frame of play draining a trey, opening ODU up to its biggest lead of the game. Overall, ODU and the Owls traded baskets throughout the second quarter of play. The Monarchs went 7-of-16 from the field, while FAU went 8-of-18. FAU closed out the period with five-straight points to trail the Monarchs by 13 heading into the locker room.
ODU came out of the break once against scoring in the first minute of action. FAU turned their momentum around when they scored seven consecutive points, setting off a 12-2 run with 3:30 left to play in the third quarter. Wayne picked up an offensive board, which led to ODU's resurgence, taking a 53-40 lead heading into the final frame of play.
ODU carried that momentum into the fourth quarter, knocking down 10-straight points and not allowing an Owl field goal for the first 3:29 of action. Allie Tylka of FAU broke the Owl scoring drought with 5:09 left on the game clock but Wayne and Amari Young closed out the contest with a combined eight points to help earn the Monarchs first road win of the season as well as Milton-Jones' first win in the C-USA.
"There are adjustments that we will make and then there are things that we are fine with seeing but more than anything, if it's not broke, don't fix it."
- Wayne notched her 11th career double-double Friday night.
- Morris recorded her sixth-straight game putting together a double-digit scoring performance.
- Hudson notched her third-straight contest in double figures.
- ODU scored 19 points off the bench, the most this season.
ODU will return back to action tomorrow, Jan. 9 as they take on FAU at 2 p.m.