IRVING, Texas – Celsi Caraway (Arlington, Texas) tallied a career-high 24 points and made a personal-best five three-pointers (3 in the 1st quarter), as the University of Dallas women's basketball team notched a 71-43 victory on Saturday afternoon over Johnson & Wales University (CO).
The Crusaders poured in their most points in a single quarter this season with 24 in the first 10 minutes. After limiting the opposition to 11 points in the first and nine in the second back-to-back games at the Maher Center; UD kept this contest out of reach and tied its largest margin of victory with a 28-point difference.
Michelle DeCoud (Monument, Colo.) chipped in 12 points and her layup for the first Dallas points of the game at 8:49 gave her 1,000 for the senior's career.
DECOUD EARNS 1,000
The forward became the 14th player in program history to accomplish at least 1,000 career points. She is also the 8th player to have over 1,000 points and 500 rebounds – through today's victory DeCoud had 671. DeCoud finished the game with 1,011 and currently ranks 12th, as she passed Christy Allen (1,008) and Alese McKinstry (1,003) today.
DeCoud began the campaign with 906 and was at 16th. She surpassed Kelly Robertson (938) and Marie Olson (982) en route to achieving Saturday's feat in just six games after averaging 17.5 points in that span.
Last season, Seana Stoia (Graduated '17) broke 1,000 points and 500 rebounds for her career. Since 2014-15, four players counting DeCoud have joined the 1,000-point group. Marleyna Bustamante ('15) and Brooke Hagemann ('15) netted the achievement within a week.
HOW IT HAPPENED
Dallas charged in front with 11 of the first 13 points scored in over five minutes of the opening quarter. DeCoud scored the first four points and after a jumper by the Wildcats, Madilyne Borjon (San Antonio, Texas) hit a layup. Panda Green (Farmersville, Texas) split at the free throw line, Jules Oliveti (Southlake, Texas) put in a layup, and then Caraway capped the nice start with her first points.
The sophomore was hot from the floor with three shots made from downtown to cap her 11-point quarter. The first came six minutes in after Andromeda Sales sank both at the line. That trey for Caraway pushed the advantage to double-digits for the first time at 14-4. Another three by Caraway occurred Helen Onyenso (Oak Park, Ill.) and Oliveti tallied field goals to stretch a 7-0 run to lead 21-5. She answered a trifecta by JWU's Ashley Mortensen with her third of the frame at 1:47 and matched the biggest lead of the game at that point by 16.
The Crusaders took advantage of 12 points off turnovers, and would finish the game with 27 points from miscues. Johnson & Wales committed 27 of them, while Dallas turned the ball over a season-low 14 times.
A 17-point second quarter helped balloon UD's halftime lead to 41, which was the highest of the season. Caraway had already matched her highest point total from 2015-16 with 15. DeCoud knocked down a jumper inside the post on a catch and shoot from an inbounds play on the baseline to secure the 41-20 score through two.
Caraway's final pair of treys that day came in the first two minutes of the third quarter. Her first capped an eight-point streak that pushed the advantage to 48-20.
The largest lead of the contest for UD was 32 points in the fourth quarter. Green picked off a steal and drove down on a layup to make it 61-29. Even with the team's top pair of scorers – DeCoud and Onyenso - entering the game in foul trouble and being limited to 16 minutes; the margin of the game was enough to improve the team to 4-2 and remain unbeaten at home.
Caraway's 24 points led a trio of players in double figures. DeCoud kept her streak of being in double figures intact at six despite foul trouble limiting her to 16 minutes. Oliveti rounded out the group with 10, which was the first time in three games to eclipse that mark. DeCoud and Vanessa Diaz (San Antonio, Texas) tied team-highs in boards with eight apiece. Green and Caraway combined for 13 assists with seven and six, respectively. The Crusaders edged JWU 44-18 for points in the paint.
Brianna Aluya paced the Wildcats with 21 points and nine rebounds as her team-highs nearly captured a double-double. The road team struggled shooting 29.4 percent from the field and 22.6 percent (5-22) from three-point range.
DeCoud continued her movement on other UD Record lists. She currently sits fifth in made field goals with 416. She reached 400 a week ago and on Thursday moved to the top-five after passing Olson (403), Janet Gribnitz (407), and Hagemann (409).
DeCoud became the 23rd player all-time to dish 100 assists. She holds that exact amount after her lone one to Olivia Severson (La Crosse, Wis.) in the fourth quarter.
The Crusaders shot 44.4 percent and reached a new season-high in points. The 22 assists as a team were a season-best.
1,000 CAREER POINTS! Congrats to DeCoud from @dallaswbb on becoming the 14th player in program history to reach this milestone! She also is the 8th player to hold over 1,000 career points and 500 rebounds! #GoUD #UDWBB #d3h pic.twitter.com/vMWL25deR2— UDallas Athletics (@UDallasSports) December 2, 2017
Dallas has a quick break in lengthy home stretch of December by going to Dallas Christian College on Tuesday. Tip-off is slated at 5:30 p.m. in a rematch that saw UD win 70-45 in the season opener at the Maher Center.