Lady Wildcats Hold Off Rally to End Skid
The Louisiana College women's basketball team built up a 21-point lead in the second quarter and then held off a furious rally by McMurry to end the Lady Wildcats six-game losing streak with a 78-73 win over the War Hawks Saturday afternoon at the Kimbrell Arena.
With the game tied at 13-13 with just less than three minutes left in the first quarter, Mone't Cox got to the rim and laid the ball in to score the first two of eight straight LC points to close out the period, putting the Lady Wildcats up 21-13 at the end of the period, but that was only the beginning of the run. LC actually kept McMurry off the scoreboard in the second quarter until there was less than 4:30 remaining before halftime, and by that point, the Lady Wildcat run had grown to 21-0, capped when Maya Washington split a pair of free throws to make the score 34-13. McMurry closed the first half scoring ten of the period's final 14 points to cut the LC lead down to 38-23 at the break.
However, the second half started rough for the Lady Wildcats as the War Hawks began the third quarter on a 17-6 run to cut the LC lead to as little as four points. LC pushed it back up to eight-point on a Jamaica James three-pointer with 1:10 remaining to make it 53-45, but with McMurry scoring the final two points of the period on a pair of free throws, LC's lead was six points heading to the final ten minutes of play. McMurry continued to slowly cut away at the Lady Wildcat advantage until the War Hawks retook the lead at 61-60 with just less than six minutes to go. With less than 2:30 left and trailing 71-68, a Christina Canale lay-up got the Lady Wildcats going on the one final push needed to keep the game from slipping away, starting a 7-0 LC push that Canale herself finished with a lay-up with less than 30 seconds left to salt away the win.
"It was a great win for us today," said Louisiana College Head Coach Matt LeBato. "It was a nice result for our girls, who have been tremendous all throughout the season. We always preach about getting better, no matter the circumstances, and they've embodied that mindset. We were in this same position when we came to McMurry for a non-conference game before Christmas, a game we ended up losing by 15. We continued to push each other every day and keep moving forward and today we win this game. I'm very proud of their will and effort."
Fr. G ZyUnn Cormier led the Lady Wildcats with 18 points on seven made shots, three of which came from deep. She also added three rebounds and a pair of steals. Fr. F Alex Harrison notched a double-double with 12 points and ten rebounds. Fr. G Maya Washington was four of eight from the field and finished with 11 points while also grabbing four rebounds and collecting three steals. So. G Kayla Kinney rounded out the leading scorers with ten points. LC completed the contest hitting 45.1% from the field.
The Wildcats (4-16, 2-10 ASC), despite the win, saw their postseason hopes turned away by results elsewhere on Saturday. They now come back to Pineville for the final weekend of basketball at home this season, looking to complete a season sweep of the University of the Ozarks, who they defeated 75-67 back on January 18th. Tip-off against the Eagles (5-16, 0-12 ASC) is set for 5:30 P.M. this Thursday evening at H.O. West Fieldhouse.