Marsh starts fast, VU women win tournament title game

Saturday, November 28, 2009 at 7:51pm
Staff reports

Merideth Marsh scored 25 points and had five assists as Vanderbilt defeated North Carolina State 77-71 in the championship game of VU’s annual Thanksgiving women’s basketball tournament.

Marsh got No. 21 Vanderbilt (6-0) off to a 9-0 lead with three 3-pointers in the first 2:49. The advantage grew to 13-0 before N.C. State (5-2) finally scored its first points, 7:58 into the contest.

The Commodores never trailed and never let their lead dip below four points. It was 19-15 with just under 10 minutes to play in the first half when Marsh started an 11-1 run with two free throws. She added another 3-pointer and one assist during that stretch.

The senior guard made six of eight field goal attempts overall (five of six 3-pointers) and eight of 10 free throws. She made as many 3-pointers as the entire N.C. State team.

Jence Rhoads added 12 points, and Hannah Tuomi, Lauren Lueders and Jessica Mooney all finished with nine.

N.C. State, which got a team-high 15 points from Nikitta Gartrell, finished the contest on a 14-6 run.

VU earned its spot in the championship contest with a 95-51 victory over Austin Peay on Friday.