Miami women’s basketball head coach Ferne Labati becomes the 39th NCAA Division I coach to earn her 400th career victory as the Hurricanes beat visiting St. John’s, 69-54, Saturday afternoon at the Convocation Center.
Miami wins its sixth straight game over SJU improving to 14-7 overall and 6-4 in Big East action. The Red Storm fall to 8-14 overall and 2-9 in conference play.
Despite the victory, Labati found several areas that her team needed to improve in.
“We still turned the ball over too much,” Labati said. “In order for us to beat great teams, we have to do a better job boxing out and keeping up our intensity.”
Labati in her 24th season has compiled an overall record of 400-288. She is in her 15th season at Miami with a record of 264-166.
Freshman Tamara James led Miami with 18 points, while Chanivia Broussard added 16 points in 18 minutes of action.
The Hurricanes dominated the first 20 minutes of play opening the game on a 23-6 run.
The Hurricanes continued to build on the lead taking a 43-19 advantage into the locker room at halftime.
“We played really well in the first half,” Labati said. “Our bench was able to come in and score a lot of points.”
Meghan Saake scored all 11 of her points in the first half. She finished the game with seven assists and four steals.
Miami had its largest lead of 31 points (62-31) with 8:14 remaining in the game. St. John’s made a 12-0 run over the last four minutes of the game but could not overcome its first-half deficit. Still, James thought the ‘Canes could have done a better job in the second half.
“We were a little less focused in the second half,” James said. “We set a certian amount that we were going to hold them to, and they went over that amount.”
Miami leads the all-time series 16-6. The Hurricanes shot 43 percent from the field compared to 36 percent for the Red Storm. Shemika Stevens led SJU with 14 points and seven rebounds.
Miami travels to face West Virginia Saturday at 2 p.m. in Morgantown, W.Va before returning to the Convocation Center next Wednesday to face No. 1 Uconn. Although the Huskies game looms large, James is quick to point out that the focus is on Miami’s next scheduled opponent.
“We definitely take things one game at a time,” James said. “We have to play every game like it’s our last.”
-Compiled by the Sports Information Department. Jon Sanford contributed to this article.