PONTEBUGGIANESE, Italy – The Troy women’s basketball team didn’t shoot exceptionally well, but turned up the pressure in the second half of an 81-75 win over the Italy All-Stars on Wednesday night at Sandro Pertini in Pontebuggianese, Italy.
The Trojans shot just over 36 percent (31-of-85) overall, including 13-of-39 in the second half, but forced 38 turnovers and scored 30 points off of them.
Playing by FIBA rules, the game consisted of four, 10-minute quarters, with the Trojans dominating the third quarter to take control of the game. Troy held the All-Stars to just eight points in the third, and turned a tie game at halftime to a 61-55 lead entering the fourth quarter.
Ashley Beverly-Kelley led all scorers with 25 points on 11-of-20 scoring. Kourtney Coleman posted a double-double with 16 points and 15 rebounds. Ronita Garrett and Caitlyn Ramirez each just missed a double-double with 12 points and eight rebounds apiece.
Ramirez, one of three Troy newcomers playing in the game, posted nine points and seven rebounds in the second half, helping Troy take control of an otherwise tight game.
Kristen Emerson provided good minutes for the Trojans, especially in the second half when she pulled down seven of her 11 rebounds. The sophomore also finished with a team-high six steals.
Troy, with depth on the frontcourt while in Italy, outmuscled the Italy All-Stars on the glass, holding a 59-38 advantage in the rebounding category.
Unlike the frontcourt, the Trojans are thin in the backcourt on their trip, with just three guards dressing for the game. Lacey Buchanon posted a team-high six assists, all in the first half, but played sparingly after that due to foul trouble. Beverly-Kelley posted four assists and played a team-high 35 minutes.
The Italy All-Stars shot over 46 percent (28-of-60) on the game, including 7-of-18 from the 3-point line, which is longer internationally than in the NCAA. Troy was just 3-of-21 from deep.
The All-Stars made three straight 3-pointers to open the fourth quarter and tied the game at 63-63 with 8:21 to go. Beverly-Kelley responded with a 3-pointer just 20 seconds later to spark a 12-4 run that gave the Trojans the lead for good.
The Trojans have been in Italy since Saturday and have visited Rome, Florence, Pisa and Montecatini. The team will travel to Venice on Thursday before playing their second and final game on Friday in Trieste.