STARKVILLE – Mississippi State’s strong start to the season continued Thursday night as Vic Schaefer’s squad knocked off Tennessee Tech 90-45.
The victory improved the Bulldogs to 4-0 on the year for the first time since 2009-10, the same season MSU advanced to the Sweet 16.
“I’m really proud of our kids,” Schaefer said. “I thought they played hard from the jump. I like our energy, I like our effort and I like our full court press right now. It sets a tempo, sometimes you don’t get the steals but it just creates an atmosphere and creates energy for our team. I’m just really pleased with some of the little things that we’re doing.
“We’ve got some holes to plug there’s no doubt about it. We’ve got a lot of mistakes and I’m still coaching every possession and trying to teach. But I love the energy and effort in which we’re trying to make things happen. I like how we’re playing right now and I like my team and their focus. I think we’ve really got some kids that can make a difference now on the floor night in and night out.”
The Bulldogs shot 44.1-percent from the field and were led by junior Savannah Carter with a career-high 21 points. Carter was 5-of-8 from the floor and buried State’s only shots behind the arc.
“That’s shocking because I’m not a scorer,” Carter said. “But I think I played okay as usual.”
Kendra Grant added 18 points followed by Martha Alwal, who notched her first double-double of the season and 20th of her career with 17 points and 11 rebounds.
“I just wanted to come out today and play as hard as I could,” Alwal said. “These last few games I’ve been slacking and should have been getting the double-doubles the past few games. So I tried to make up for that tonight.”
Breanna Richardson scored 12 points and Katia May dished out a career-high 13 assists for State.
The Bulldogs jumped out to a 17-4 start to the game and held a 52-27 advantage by halftime. Mississippi State went on to outscore the Golden Eagles 38-18 in the second half.
Tennessee Tech (1-2) finished the game shooting 35.7-percent from the field but committed 34 turnovers. The Bulldogs were able to capitalize those turnovers into 44 points the other way.
In contrast, the Golden Eagles only scored three points off turnovers.
T’Keyah Williams led Tennessee Tech with eight points before fouling out. Candace Parson, Hannah Goolsby and Shunice Herron all had six points for the Golden Eagles.
MSU returns to action Tuesday at 6 p.m. hosting Savannah State.