Miami women’s basketball started off the season with an 83-51 win against the Maryland Eastern Shore Hawks on Monday afternoon at the Watsco Center.
The Hurricanes’ defense forced 29 turnovers and outrebounded the Hawks, 52-34.
Miami was coached by interim head coach Fitzroy Anthony after head coach Katie Meier was suspended for the first three games of the season for undisclosed reasons.
“Early on, there was a lot of excitement because it’s the first game, but as time went on, we got some more ball movement and got it to our shooters. We have some kinks we have to work out, but it was fun,” Anthony said. “We scored 37 points off their turnovers and that is something we take pride in, playing defense and getting steals.”
After a slow start and only leading by five at the end of the first quarter, Miami kicked into high gear and went on a tear the rest of the game. The Hurricanes locked down the Hawks and limited them to seven points on 3-of-12 shooting in the second quarter.
Nine players scored for Miami, and four players reached double figures.
Guard Ja’leah Williams had a monstrous game. She led the team in points with 14 on 6-of-7 shooting from the field, as well as leading the team with five steals.
Graduate student Destiny Harden proved to be the leader of this team. Throughout the game, she controlled the attack of the squad and the pace they played at. She finished the game with 13 points on 5-of-11 shooting from the field, and she led the team with 10 rebounds.
In their first game, the Cavinder twins played well. They combined for 17 points on 5-of-12 shooting from the field.
This team’s strength throughout the season will be height, and they put that on display against the Hawks. Forwards Lola Pendande, Latasha Lattimore and Lazaria Spearman all stepped up and made plays in the paint offensively as well as defensively.
The Hurricanes are back in action on Thursday when they host Stetson for Elementary School Day. Tip-off is set for 11 a.m., and the game will air on TV on ACC Network Extra.