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FIU's Jerica Coley scores 3,000th career point

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 11, 2014 at 7:49 pm •  Published: March 11, 2014

FIU senior Jerica Coley did not initially understand how rare it is for a women's college basketball player to reach the 3,000-point mark.

When it was explained to her, she was blown away.

Coley is the 10th player in NCAA Division I history to eclipse the 3,000-point barrier, doing so with a 20-point showing Tuesday in FIU's 85-65 win over Rice in the first round of the Conference USA tournament at El Paso, Texas.

She's at 3,012 points for her career, and will get at least one more chance to keeping adding to the total when the Panthers (13-17) play East Carolina on Wednesday in the tournament's second round.

"One of my teammates was telling me that I was the 10th to get to that number, so it seems like a pretty big deal if in all the years only 10 people have gotten it so far," Coley said Tuesday night in a telephone interview. "I'm sure I'll think about it more a little later, but just that fact was pretty shocking."

Coley entered Tuesday eight points shy of the milestone, and got there on a layup that put FIU ahead 44-34 with 18:03 remaining. She's averaging 29.2 points per game, putting her on pace to lead the nation in scoring for the second straight season.

"She did a beautiful job," FIU coach Cindy Russo said.

She passed Maine's Cindy Blodgett (3,005) for ninth place on the Division I career list Tuesday. By the time Wednesday's game ends, Coley could realistically be No. 5 on the all-time charts.

And the next four names on that scoring list were colossal stars in the women's game.

USC's Cheryl Miller is eighth on the career list at 3,018 points. Tennessee's Chamique Holdsclaw is seventh at 3,025. Connecticut's Maya Moore is sixth at 3,036, and Delaware's Elena Delle Donne is sitting in fifth at 3,039.

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