Belmont Abbey sophomore Morgan Midkiff led three Crusaders in double figures with 13 points and the defense forced 27 turnovers as the women's basketball team opened the 2013-14 season, as well as the Jason Williams era, with a 62-46 win at Elizabeth City State this evening in the season opener for both teams. Jason Williams gets his first win as a head coach after serving as an assistant for the past ten seasons.
The Crusaders controlled the game from the start as they led 33-14 at the half. The lead would be as great as 28 with nine minutes to go in the game and only trailed once, at 3-0 on the first three points of the game.
After giving up the opening three-pointer, the Abbey embarked on an 18-6 run, capped off by a pair of three-pointers from Midkiff, that moved the Abbey ahead 18-9. A Vikings jumper briefly halted the run, but the Crusader offense soared right back as they outscored ECSU 14-1 in the final 7:40 to take a 33-14 halftime lead.
Belmont Abbey picked right back up where it left off to begin the second half, easily moving its lead to 25 on a 21-12 run to start the period. The run was capped off by a McKenzie Owen layup at the 9:12 mark, which gave the Abbey its highest lead of the game, 28 points at 54-26.
The lead never dropped below 15 as the Crusaders won the season opener for the second-straight year.
Midkiff led the way with 13 points and six rebounds. Long added 12 and four assists. Owen contributed ten and seven rebounds. Tajanna Brown led all players with 12 rebounds, seven on the offensive end. She also scored six points. Candace Fox handed out seven assists and also had a pair of steals.