TYLER, TX -- The Louisiana College women’s basketball team opened their American Southwest Conference Eastern Division schedule on Thursday night with an 81-59 loss to the University of Texas at Tyler. Seven more turnovers and 13 less rebounds than the Patriots kept the Wildcats offense from finding their rhythm in the game. The Wildcats travel to the University of the Ozarks on Saturday for a 2 p.m. tip-off in ASC play.
The home Patriots came out of the gate strong, taking a 12-4 lead by the mid-way point of the first quarter. The Wildcats took second half of the quarter to engineer a comeback stretch that got them within two possessions by the end of the first. The inside play of Brooke Jones, Zharian Maxmillion, and Jonika Walton carried the team to the 14-10 game by the first quarter break.
The Wildcats used their momentum to stay close in the second quarter, pulling within three points on a couple different occasions after conversions by Kourtney McGhee. A 9-4 stretch by UTT over the final four minutes gave the home team the double-digit lead at halftime, 37-27. The Wildcats shot 32.1 percent in the first half and were outrebounded by the Patriots 27-13.
The Lady Wildcats made an early push once play resumed in the second half, coming out with an 8-3 run to pull back within five in just three minutes of the quarter. The LC push was quickly halted as the Patriots went on a 10-2 run over the next three and a half minutes to stretch their lead back to double figures at 50-37. Through the final seven minutes of the third quarter it was UTT that was able take control of the game and held a 58-41 lead heading into the final quarter.
The Patriots continued to apply pressure in the fourth quarter and outscored the Wildcats 23-18 over the final 10 minutes to take the 81-59 win. Brooke Jones was able to toss in a late layup in the final seconds to push her total for the game to 21, the sixth time this year she’s reached that mark in a game and the second in a row. Jones added eight rebounds on the night, with Zharian Maxmillion and Jonika Walton each collecting six on the night. Maxmillion and senior Kourtney McGhee both ended with 10 points in the game.
The Wildcats take on Ozarks on Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. at the Mabee Gymnasium in Clarksville, Ark for their next contest. They then play their first ASC game of the season at H.O. West Fieldhouse the following Thursday as they host rival East Texas Baptist in the annual “Fill the Fieldhouse” night on campus.