Monarch Women’s Basketball Takes Down CNU in Home Exhibition

By Noah Fort, Associate Sports Editor

Originally published November 4, 2021.


Last night, the Old Dominion University Women’s Basketball team capped off an exhibition win against Christopher Newport University. Both teams have come off of a fresh start, as the off season ended not too long ago. On top of that, official season practices started just five weeks ago. Because of this, both teams were hungry and ready to see the court again for official competition.


The Monarchs came out strong and ready to play as they led in points in every quarter except the fourth. The first and second quarters were pretty tight as the first ended with ODU up 26-19 and the second ended with ODU scoring 22 compared to CNU’s 15. Coach Delisha Milton-Jones was pleased with the team’s performance and execution. At the half mark, Amari Young certainly put on a clinic as she went 4-8 from the field and had three steals. She would go on to finish the game with 11 points, going 5-9 from the field with four steals on the defensive end.


Though Amari’s performance was spot on, she was not satisfied and was hungry to be more dominant in the game. When asked how she would bring that same intensity into the regular season home opener against South Carolina State next Tuesday, she said “Just better myself because I’m not satisfied tonight. I felt like I left a lot of things on the floor, missed a lot of things I shouldn’t have. But just going into the gym and working on the things. Just getting reps in and you know next week whenever we play South Carolina State. Yeah, just getting better at those things.”

New Monarch Brianna Jackson had a phenomenal game performance as well. She shot 100% from the field and 80% from the free throw line. Along with that, she grabbed five boards, three of which were defensive and three of which were offensive. Just as Amari stated, she felt that she could’ve given more, stating “I think my performance could definitely use some work. Like Mari said I feel like I left a little bit on the court. But I’m just gonna keep going hard in practice and listen to what all the coaches tell me.“ Moreover, she was excited to be able to play in front of her family. She stated “I’m just happy to be home. They can come to as many games as possible.”


Young and Jackson contributed greatly to the Monarchs’ 87-70 victory over CNU. In regards to the entire team’s contributive performance and execution, Coach Delsiha-Milton Jones was proud of her players. In particular, her freshmen unit as a whole. “If I had to pick out an individual performance, I would say our freshmen group as a whole. I was really happy to see them come into the game and not look scared,” she said.


Coach noted that they face tough competition during practice, most of which contributed to the freshman unit’s engagement and competitiveness against CNU. Milton-Jones said “You know in practice we have some pretty tough competition that they face every day. But, they came in today, they were engaged and were competitive. They finally saw a ball go through the basket, so I’m pleased with that.” The young freshman core consists of Ashanti Barnes-Williams, Eden Sample, Alex Rouse, Amhyia Moreland, and Kaylen Nelson.


With the freshman unit making big moves, veteran Mariah Adams played a major role in the Monarchs win against CNU as well. Coach Milton-Jones stated that Mariah Adams was the biggest factor of success. “You know, she was kind of coasting along. She hadn’t scored a field goal and then I was able to come into the timeout, after halftime I had to burn a timeout, and we had a little discussion. You know and I said some kind words to her, very firmly with a few choice words and she accepted the challenge and she came and she woke up.”


Waking Mariah Adams is something CNU should not have done because once they did, it was game over for the Captains. Coach Milton-Jones mentioned that when Mariah Adams woke up in the game, things started to shift greatly for the Monarchs. “When she woke up, that’s when our play went to another level. She is the head of our snake. I don’t want anyone to get that twisted in any way shape or form. She is going to be our leader. She is the Chief out there that are leading the Indians. She is the coach on the floor”, said Milton-Jones


Furthermore, what really helped the Monarchs was their tenacity on the defensive end. They scored a total of 41 points off of CNU’s 31 turnovers, which is something Coach Milton-Jones said she is proud of. However, the Monarchs did have quite a few turnovers of their own, totaling at 18. When asked how the players can limit those turnovers in the future, Milton-Jones stated “Now us having 18 we’re gonna have to work on that there. Last year I think we were around 13 turnovers per game. If I can get us in that same range this year with the talent that we have, then we’re gonna win a lot of ball games.”


Next week, the Monarchs will open for their regular season against South Carolina State at 6:30 p.m. It will take place at the Chartway Arena.