Jan. 27, 1998

No. 3 Old Dominion is too much for Virginia

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Nyree Roberts had 18 points and 14 rebounds and Natalie Diaz added 17 points Tuesday night as No. 3 Old Dominion took control very quickly and went on to an 80-51 victory over No. 16 Virginia.

In the first-ever neutral site meeting between the state's premier women's teams, the Lady Monarchs (17-1) had Richmond Coliseum rocking like their own gym midway through a first half they dominated in every way.

Virginia (13-5) actually led 7-2 after 3:15, but Old Dominion scored the next 18 points and 22 of the next 23 over the next seven minutes. Aubrey Eblin started it with a 3-pointer, Roberts scored seven points and four other Lady Monarchs also scored as they opened a 24-8 lead with 9:48 left in the half.

By the time Virginia made its next field goal, a basket by DeMya Walker with 5:09 left, they had gone 11:36 without a field goal and the Lady Monarchs had opened a 28-15 lead that kept growing.

Old Dominion led 37-19 at halftime, then scored the first eight points of the second half. Ticha Penichiero got three of those with a 3-pointer, then fed Eblin for one from the right wing 33 seconds later to make it 45-19.

After Renee Robinson scored for the Cavaliers, the Lady Monarchs scored the next nine points, with Amber Eller-Paul scoring the last five.

Mimi McKinney led Virginia with 14 points, but was 5-of-22 from the field, and Erin Stovall added 13. Virginia finished 17-of-57 from the field, including 3-for-23 on 3-pointers, and was outrebounded 49-29.

The loss was the second straight blowout for Virginia, which was beaten 93-66 at No. 13 Duke on Friday night, and came in Old Dominion's first game against a ranked opponent since they lost 93-72 at No. 2 Connecticut on Jan. 19. The victory improved the Lady Monarchs to 5-1 against Top 25 teams.

Penichiero, playing on a tender ankle and in foul trouble throughout, still managed to get three steals to pass Nancy Lieberman-Cline for the Lady Monarchs' career record. Penichiero has 514 to Lieberman-Cline's 511.

The victory was Old Dominion's 15th in 24 meetings with Virginia, but first since the 1988-89 season. The Cavaliers had won six of the last seven, including an NCAA regional semifinals game in 1995 in Charlottesville.