Bench key in grind for Bulldogs during women's season

Chloe Bibby
Staff Writer

Mississippi State’s women can put one of the best starting lineups on the basketball court every night.

The guard heavy group of Victoria Vivians, Morgan William, Blair Schaefer, Roshunda Johnson and Teaira McCowan can stack up against any program in the country.

Vivians and McCowan can produce inside and outside for the Bulldogs.

When one of the starters gets in foul trouble, the depth can be tested. That’s where the bench becomes very important.

MSU found out on Sunday at LSU how key a reserve can be. Chloe Bibby stepped up in a big way when Vivians got in foul trouble and had to come out of the game.

“She came in and played big minutes for us,” Vivians said of Bibby. “She’s adjusting really well.”

Bibby played 23 minutes and scored 10 points and pulled down four rebounds.

It was good timing for the 6-1 freshman from Australia as her parents flew 22 hours to see the game in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

“For Chloe, it was a really special Sunday,” MSU coach Vic Schaefer said.

Bibby started out the season strong with 13 points against Virginia and she matched that output against Louisiana-Lafayette. She had 10 points against Southern Miss.

Another Bulldog who has begun to get her feet wet after becoming eligible in December is Jordan Danberry.

As Bibby does as a forward, Danberry can come in, spell a guard when they need it and hold her own.

Fans may not see much of Danberry during games just yet, but her teammates can vouch for how talented the junior from Conway, Arkansas, can be.

“I see it every day in practice,” William said. “I see her making big shots; so when she gets comfortable in the game, they are going to fall for her. Sometimes she gets upset when they don’t fall for her, but I know it’s coming. When they do start falling, I’m really going to be happy for her because I know it will really help our team.”

Danberry has played in nine games so far for MSU. Her best game was getting seven points and four rebounds in 15 minutes against Maine.

It will be all hands on deck Thursday night when the Bulldogs host the Ole Miss Rebels. Bibby and Danberry could definitely be factors in a rivalry game that become physical and fouls start increasing.

That goes for backup point guard Jazzmun Holmes, post player Zion Campbell and any other MSU player that comes off the bench.

Bibby took advantage of her opportunity and William, for one, was happy to see it.
“Coach (Schaefer) always tells us when our names are called, be ready,” William said. “That day Chloe was ready. Her whole family was there. I am proud for her.”