CLARKSVILLE, Ark. -- As they have done every American Southwest Conference weekend, the Louisiana College women’s basketball team split their pair of games. The Wildcats survived with a 59-56 victory over the winless in conference University of the Ozarks on Saturday afternoon in Arkansas. LC returns to H.O. West Fieldhouse this week for a pair of ASC games on Thursday and Saturday.
The Wildcats came out of the gate strong against the Eagles on Saturday afternoon, taking a 12-5 lead through the first seven minutes of play. A 6-0 run to end the first quarter by UO though got them back within striking distance at 12-11 at the first break.
The scoring stretch continued into the second quarter for the Eagles as they scored the first six points of the quarter. It wasn’t until a pair of free throws from Kourtney McGhee at the 5:49 mark of the second broke the 12-0 run by the home team. The Wildcats outscored the Eagles 11-4 the rest of the way to take the slim 23-21 lead into the halftime break. After going more than nine minutes of total game time without a field goal, the Wildcats made 3-of-6 shots in the final 3:47 of the half, plus 3-of-4 free throws.
A closely contested third quarter kept things interesting for the first seven minutes, but once again a late run by the Wildcats put them in position to pick up another Saturday road win. LC ended the third on an 11-4 run to give themselves a 43-35 lead, capped off by the buzzer-beater from RyDeja McQuarn off the backboard.
The lead grew to 12 in the first few minutes of the final quarter but another shooting slump would allow Ozarks to work their way back from the deficit. Over a nearly eight minute stretch the Wildcats shot 2-of-9 from the field with five turnovers. Down by two with just over a minute to go, Zharian Maxmillion followed a miss on running layup by McGhee with a rebound and put back to tie the game at 55. A steal on the other end by McQuarn let up Brooke Jones to score in the pain with 44 seconds left to put the Wildcats back on top.
The Eagles had multiple chances to score on their end following the Jones layup, but could not find the basket they needed to cut into a 58-55 LC lead, missing three straight attempts and one of two free throws after a foul.
Kourtney McGhee led all scorers with 14 points and the only Wildcats in double figures for the game. RyDeja McQuarn and Brooke Jones both ended with nine points each, and Zharian Maxmillion with eight. Jones added seven rebounds and a key fourth quarter layup gave her 900 career points at Louisiana College.
The Wildcats return to H.O. West Fieldhouse this week for a pair of ASC games against rival East Texas Baptist and LeTourneau. Thursday’s game against ETBU will be the annual “Fill the Fieldhouse” game for Louisiana College. Tip-off is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Stay connected to Louisiana College women’s basketball by following @LC_WBB on Twitter. For general athletics news follow @LC_Wildcats on Twitter or like Louisiana College Wildcats on Facebook.