TOLEDO, OH - Toledo rebounded quite well from a rare home loss and claimed a convincing 81-42 victory over Cleveland State on Saturday in Savage Arena. UT was coming off a 72-65 setback to nationally ranked Green Bay on Thursday, snapping its 22-game home win streak. With today's win, the Rockets improve to 6-3 on the season.
UT truly dominated all phases of today's season-high 39-point victory to defeat the Vikings (3-5) for a ninth-consecutive time at home. The 39-point difference is Toledo's largest since it topped Iona, 92-36, to open the 2002-03 campaign.
Sophomore Andola Dortch led a balanced UT attack with 13 points and three thefts. The second-year point guard has now scored at least 10 points in every contest this season.
Joining Dortch in double digits were junior Riley McCormick (season-high 12 pts.), junior Kyle Baumgartner (11 pts.) and junior Yolanda Richardson (11 pts.). The 2010-11 Mid-American Conference regular-season champions also received outstanding efforts from sophomore Brianna Jones (6 pts., 4 reb.), freshman Inma Zanoguera (2 pts., 9 reb.) and freshman Stephanie Recker (7 pts., 6 reb.) to wrap up their four-game homestand with a 3-1 mark. In total, all 11 Rockets that saw game action found the scoring column and nine players registered at least five points in the dominant performance.
Toledo shot a respectable 44.9 percent (31-of-69) from the field and a season-high 57.1 percent (8-of-14) from three-point land to surpass the 80-point plateau for the first time this season and seventh time under Coach Cullop.
The 2011 WNIT champions also flexed their defensive muscles and collected a season-high 17 steals, while forcing the Vikings into committing 33 turnovers. Toledo took full advantage of those miscues and translated them into a season-high 37 points.
UT set the tone at the opening tip and raced out to an early 16-2 lead before the first media timeout. The Midnight Blue & Gold hit seven of their first eight field-goal attempts and saw six different players collect baskets in the early going to build a double-digit cushion it would not surrender.
With the Rockets' offense clicking, the defense was equally as effective, as they limited CSU to only three field goals over the first 10 minutes of the contest. They also forced the opponents into committing nine turnovers and held a 21-6 advantage at the 10:11 mark.
Toledo's lead continued to grow as the opening period wore on and the home team took a 37-14 lead at the intermission.
In the second half, UT was not really challenged as its cushion did not sink below 18 points.
Destiny Blue and Takima Keane paced the Vikings with 11 points each. The visitors were limited to 37.8 percent (17-of-45) from the field and 41.7 percent (5-of-12) from the free-throw line to equal their lowest scoring effort of the season.
The Rockets will take the next eight days off to focus on final examinations for the fall semester before returning to the hardwood on Sunday, Dec. 18 at Milwaukee. The opening tip from the Klotsche Center is slated for 2:00 p.m. (CT).
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