From Belmont Athletics –
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – A 25-2 run by Belmont women’s basketball to close out the second quarter sunk Vanderbilt’s comeback bid Thursday afternoon inside Memorial Gymnasium. A career day from junior forward Ellie Harmeyer (Kenosha, Wisc.) helped propel the Bruins to a record-breaking 111-74 victory, marking the most points a BU squad has scored in its Division I era.
Three different Bruins scored 20 points in a single game for the first time since the 1994-95 season. Senior guard Kylee Smith (Alpharetta, Ga.) posted her second consecutive 20-plus point performance, scoring 27 with the help of five threes. She was accompanied by Darby Maggard‘s (Larwill, Ind.) 21 points and E. Harmeyer’s 20 points, tying her career-best. The trio was also joined by three more double-digit performances from Sally McCabe (Mt. Juliet, Tenn.) (17 points), Maddie Wright (Chattanooga, Tenn.) (15 points) and Jenny Roy (Brentwood, Tenn.) (11 points).
The Bruins (10-3) shot an astounding 58 percent from the floor with the help of draining 15 treys and going 37-for-64 from the field. They also got it done on the defensive end, out-rebounding the Commodores, 47-17.
Vanderbilt (3-10) was led by Chelsie Hall’s 26 points who was perfect from the line, sinking all nine free throws. Three other Commodores also tallied double figure scoring performances.
After trading buckets to start the game, Belmont began to separate itself from Vanderbilt with the help of Maggard’s hot hand. The junior guard powered the Bruins to an 8-0 run, sinking two of her four treys in the first quarter within a span of 30 seconds to put BU up, 12-7, with 5:22 left in the quarter. Maggard accounted for nearly half of Belmont’s first quarter points after going 4-for-4 beyond the arc as Belmont led, 25-17.
The rest of the squad followed suit in the second stanza as five Bruins drained at least one trey en route to putting up 32 points. Vanderbilt tried to get back into the game, scoring eight unanswered to come within one-point, 32-31, of the Bruins with 5:13 remaining in the half. That was as close as BU was going to let the Commodores get as the team erupted in the final four minutes, countering Vanderbilt’s run with a 25-2 scoring frenzy. E. Harmeyer was the spark plug, hitting a three and the proceeding to draw and convert the And-1 play on her next drive. E. Harmeyer refused to let up, swiping the ball from a Commodore guard in the waning seconds that led to Maggard draining her fifth three. Belmont took a commanding lead into the locker room, 57-33, with the help of 11 points from E. Harmeyer.
Vanderbilt started to come alive in the third quarter, scoring 28 points but Belmont responded with 24 of its own. Roy made her presence known in the third, tallying seven points and compiling four rebounds in the stanza. Collectively, Belmont refused to let the Commodores sneak back into the game finding an answer to everything VU had up their sleeve.
Belmont continued to forge forward in the final stanza with none other than E. Harmeyer hitting her third three-pointer of the afternoon to get things started. The trey put the guard at 20 points, tying her career-best. Smith took control from there, scoring 13 points in the fourth quarter alone with the help of three buckets from beyond the arc. Wright also added eight points to her line in the final minutes to notch her fourth double-digit performance of the year. While piling another 30 points in the fourth, Belmont held Vanderbilt to a quiet 13 points as the squad ran away with a 111-74 victory.
- 111 points is the most that a Belmont team has scored in its Division I era and the most since 1994-95.
- It was the first time since 1994-95 that Belmont has had three players score 20-plus points in a single game – Smith (27), Maggard (21), E. Harmeyer (20).
- Six different players scored in double-digits for the third time this season.
- Vanderbilt has only given up 111 points one other time in the program’s history – at Auburn in 1987 (L, 67-111).
- It’s the first time this season that the Bruins have reached the 100-point plateau.
- Thursday’s victory marks Belmont’s first victory over Vanderbilt since 1981 when BU won, 75-66.
- This is the first time that Belmont’s men’s and women’s teams both defeated Vanderbilt in the same season.
Belmont will kick off OVC play with a pair of road games Dec. 28 and Dec. 30. The Bruins will start with a trip to Cape Girardeau, Mo. To take on SEMO before heading to UT Martin.