The plus-29 rebound advantage of 54-25 Saturday was the largest of the season for ODU (6-5). It was a result, said Coach Karen Barefoot, of a rededicated effort after a second- half letdown against Pittsburgh a week ago that led to a 14-point loss.
“We started the game being the aggressor, and we never stopped,” Barefoot said. “We were battling for the rebounds, and that’s something we’ve been working on all week.”
ODU’s Shae Kelley collected her seventh double-double of the season with 20 points and 12 boards. Tiffany Minor and Becca Allison each hauled in nine rebounds apiece, and on the offensive end, ODU’s advantage was 23-6.
“I thought Old Dominion did a great job exploiting what our weakness is right now, and that’s the defensive glass,” said Ed Swanson, in his first year coaching the Tribe. “When you get outrebounded by 28 (actually 29), if you check all the box scores around the country, usually it’s a 35-point game.”
The Tribe (2-7) kept it respectable — ODU’s 19-point lead shrunk to 10 on multiple occasions — but William and Mary never sliced it to single digits in the final 17 minutes. While the Tribe youth has already showed promise, particularly freshman starter Marlena Tremba, who came into the game averaging 12.4 points, William and Mary struggled to develop a consistent offensive attack against ODU’s slap-happy defense.
“We had a hand up every time,” Barefoot said.
The Tribe was also unable to regularly feed the team’s leading scorer, Kaitlyn Mathieu, who has shouldered much of the offensive load this season after the graduation of the three leading scorers from a year ago.
Mathieu finished with eight points; Kyla Kerstetter led William and Mary with 14, followed by Jazmen Boone’s 13.
“We’ve got a terrific group of players who are really buying into what we’re trying to do,” Swanson said. “We’ve got to tweak some things, and we’re not real deep, so I’m asking a lot from a little, but I’m extremely pleased with the progress we’re making.”
Barefoot is also pleased with the steps ODU made after a week of good practices, and the rewards came for Destinee Young, Becca Allison and Michelle Brandao, who made their first starts of the season. Young, a 6-1 freshman forward from Chicago, finished with seven boards, four points, two blocks and a steal.
“Destinee did a great job in practice this week,” Barefoot said. “I thought she played some incredible defense. She got some key rebounds, blocked some shots, got us into our transition game, and this week, she won the one-on-one contest with the post.”
“Destinee’s a great rebounder,” Kelley added. “In practice, if you forget about her, she’s going to get it. Everybody was crashing the boards. We really talked about that this week. Three people have to crash. I think we did that tonight, and it showed.”
Allison scored seven to go with nine rebounds.
While the Lady Monarchs and the Tribe had been regular foes in the CAA, the teams met Saturday as nonconference opponents, given ODU’s move to Conference USA.
Both teams break for the holidays, with ODU getting back in action Dec. 30 against another former CAA rival, VCU, and William and Mary meeting Saint Louis at Iowa State on Dec. 28.
OLD DOMINION 60, WILLIAM AND MARY 49
ODU (6-5): Minor 3-5 1-2 9, Young 2-3 0-0 4, Kelley 7-20 6-10 20, Brandao 0-5 0-0 0, Allison 2-6 5-5 9, Gardner 1-3 0-0 2, Painter 2-6 3-5 7, Goodhope 2-4 1-2 5, Oigbokie 2-7 0-0 4. Totals 21-59 16-24 60.
W&M (2-7): Mathieu 2-8 4-6 8, Hofstaedter 0-0 0-0 0, Tremba 3-10 0-0 7, Boone 5-15 3-3 13, Kerstetter 6-13 2-3 14, Kestler 0-2 2-2 2, Curtis 0-1 0-0 0, Willems 0-0 0-0 0, Hunter 1-2 0-0 2, Stewart 1-2 0-0 3. Totals 18-53 11-14 49.
Half: ODU 32-25. 3-point goals: ODU 2-12 (Minor 2-4, Kelley 0-1, Gardner 0-1, Brandao 0-2, Allison 0-2, Goodhope 0-2), W&M 2-15 (Stewart 1-1, Tremba 1-7, Kestler 0-1, Mathieu 0-2, Kerstetter 0-4). Rebounds: ODU 54 (Kelley 12), W&M 25 (Mathieu 6). Assists: ODU 10 (Minor, Kelley, Brandao, Goodhope 2), W&M 12 (Kestler, Hunter 3). Fouls: ODU 14, W&M 18. Fouled out: Tremba. A: 392.