Alisha Jones' first name is largely unspoken around the Minot State University women's basketball program.
In fact, the 5-foot-7 junior guard has become so synonymous with the moniker "Speedy" that her official first name isn't always remembered.
"I don't even know her first name, to be honest," Beavers senior guard Sacarra Molina said.
Minot State University senior guard Lauren Safranski drives against Minnesota State-Moorhead's Morgan Zabel during the first half of a game Friday at the MSU Dome.
Jones put together a first-half performance Friday that Minnesota State-Moorhead won't soon forget. Jones scored all of her career-high 12 points in the first 20 minutes, while the Beavers dominated the Dragons 73-57 at the MSU Dome.
Jones' offense picked up immediately after junior forward Carly Boag picked up her second foul with 11 minutes, 30 seconds remaining in the first half. With Boag - the reigning Northern Sun player of the week - on the bench and out of the lane, Jones and Molina picked up the slack.
The two Beaver guards hit their jump shots and found their layups as the period wound down. In total, the duo combined for 17 points in the half's final 11:10 and widened the gap from four to 14.
"At first we just was running a set play just to get shooters open," Jones said. "But then, the coach realized that we was doing really good at penetrating, coming off screens, so she just stayed with it and I just got a lot of open shots."
MSU's production continued in the second half on both ends of the court. Boag scored 12 of her 16 points in the frame and the MSU defense pressured the basketball relentlessly.
The Beavers forced 21 Dragons turnovers and held Moorhead (4-2 overall, 1-1 NSIC) to a 33.9-percent clip from the field. Minot State (4-0, 2-0) also managed to negate Moorhead's decided height advantage.
Each team finished with 38 rebounds despite the fact the Dragons had five players 5-11 or taller log at least 12 minutes.
"(Moorhead's) a great rebounding team and I thought our kids really battled hard for boards and did what we could," MSU coach Sheila Green Gerding said. "We were outsized most of the time, but I think it was just a great effort overall."
Jones, who didn't start for the second time this season, made each of her 23 minutes count. In addition to her dozen points, Jones added four rebounds, an assist and a steal.
"It was nice to see her finally (play up to expectations)," Green Gerding said. "Speedy hasn't quite played up to her billing of what we thought she could do and I thought tonight she showed some things that she could do. She's got great quickness and she just made great plays tonight."
Molina finished with game-highs in both points (23) and rebounds (8). Senior guard Lauren Safranski had seven boards and dished out five assists.
The Beavers host Northern State at 4 p.m. today.