Blazers Bolt Past Eastern Illinois, 79-46

Freshman Janeka Williams dished out a career-high five assists to help push UAB past Eastern Illinois.

Nov. 29, 2013

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. - All nine players that saw action for the UAB women's basketball team scored in the 79-46 win over Eastern Illinois on Friday in the Plaza Lights Classic. The Blazers won by a margin of 33 points for the second-straight game.

"I thought we had great team effort today," said head coach Randy Norton. "I thought we executed our offense against their zone the best that we have all season. We had 22 assists against their 2-3 zone, we did a great job of passing the ball and penetrating the zone. We also finished with a season-low 10 turnovers. I am just really proud of the way they played together as a team."

A trio of players finished in double-figures for the Blazers, led by senior Karisma Chapman with 19 points. Fellow senior Ashley Grimes had 17, including nine from thee-point range and sophomore Chelsee Black added 10. Sophomore Dy'man Webb scored a career-high eight points, all in the first half, in the win.

UAB (4-3) jumped out to an 8-4 lead over Eastern Illinois (2-4) by the first media timeout, with sophomore Kayla Anderson recording four points in the opening stretch. The Blazers quickly extended their lead with an 8-0 run to take a 17-7 lead at the 11:50 mark.

They cruised to a 45-20 lead at the break after shooting 55 percent from the field in the first. Chapman led all players with 13 points in the first half. Out of halftime, UAB kept the pressure on Eastern Illinois, as Grimes hit a layup and Black netted a three on back-to-back possessions.

The Green and Gold held the Panthers without a basket from the field for six minutes in the second half. During that time, UAB tallied 13 points to take a 65-34 lead with six minutes remaining. Junior Miranda Burroughs added two three-pointers in the final four minutes to add to UAB's lead and close out the 79-46 win.

The team used unselfish play to push past the Panthers, as it finishing with 22 assists, a season-high, with all nine players putting points on the board. Grimes and freshman Janeka Williams each tallied five assists to lead the team.

The Blazers’ defense stifled the Panthers from the start of the game, holding them to the lowest opponent score of the season. UAB outrebounded Eastern Illinois, 48-30 and held the Panthers to just 29 percent shooting from the field. Anderson tallied three blocks, making it the sixth consecutive games she has had three or more and Chapman tied her season-high with four steals. 

UAB will be back in action for the second game of the Plaza Lights Classic against Sam Houston State on Saturday, Nov. 30. The game is set to tip off at 1 p.m. CT and will feature the two winning teams from day one as the Bearcats topped UMKC earlier today.

For the latest news on Blazer sports, follow the UAB Athletics Twitter account: @UABathletics. For women's basketball news, follow @UAB_WBB.