Lady Lions come up short to Langston
RRAC tourney loss ends SAGU season
Winston, Roberts lead team; Bruner, Brown cap careers
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- The Southwestern Assemblies of God University women’s basketball team fought evenly with #1 seeded Langston University through the midway point of the first half before yielding to the #9 ranked team, 69-49, in a Friday quarterfinal.
It was a gallant effort for Southwestern, who ended a rebuilding season with a 10-21 overall record. The Langston Lady Lions upped their mark to 29-2 and completed a sweep of the three games between the Red River Athletic Conference rivals.
SAGU recovered from a ten-game losing streak with a progressive climb through the remainder of the season. As is their M.O., the Purple Pride played solid on defense, holding opposing teams to .340 accuracy, a figure that ranked #7 nationally. Their Achilles heel has been turnovers.
Against Langston, however, the difference was rebounding. The orange-clad Lions controlled a competitive game by steadily grabbing their share of the boards. They finished with a 39-25 edge; though their ability to reel in offensive rebounds, 17 of them, allowed them to methodically pull away.
Shaquita Roberts (San Antonio, Tx / Byron Steele HS) scored three consecutive baskets, on midrange jumpers along the baseline, keeping SAGU within 26-20 with three minutes remaining in the first half. At the half, however, they trailed 32-22.
A three-point basket by Jirah Rodriguez (Georgetown, Tx / Georgetown HS) drew Southwestern to within 36-27 with 18:13 remaining. They never got closer.
Vicoria Felix, powering a Langston bench that scored 34 points, netted six to spark 13 unanswered points for a 48-27 lead at the 13:03 mark.
Southwestern would not go away. Nia Winston (Garland, Tx / Panola JuCo, Lakeview Centennial HS) keyed a scoring run later in the game, but it wasn’t enough.
She finished with 16 points, a pair of three-pointers and five boards to lead SAGU.
Roberts added 11 on 5-of-7 shooting. With three blocked shots, she tied Alice Honnery (Univ. of Mobile) for the national lead in swats with 110. Rodriguez added nine points, two assists, four caroms while rejecting one shot.
Co-captain Gabby Bruner (Peaster, Tx / Peaster HS) capped a splendid career by tossing in six points and claiming a team high seven rebounds. Tina Brown (New Braunfels, Tx / Lifegate Christian), SAGU’s only other senior, added two points and as many rebounds in four minutes.
Langston, riding a 12-game winning streak, was led by Shontice Simmons and Felix, both accounting for 16 points.
Tournament Results / Schedule
In other quarterfinal results in the RRAC tournament;
Texas Wesleyan University (25-6) held off Jarvis Christian (15-10), 72-68; LSU-Shreveport (24-7) rolled past Texas College (11-19), 86-60; and Our Lady of the Lake University (24-7) finished strong in a 79-65 besting of Wiley College (20-10).
Saturday semi-finals include: Wesleyan meeting LSU-Shreveport at 1:00pm while Langston collides with OLLU at 6:00pm.
During the regular season, LSUS took a pair of overtime wins over the Lady Rams and Langston topped the Saints by 16 and nine points.
The winners will play in the finals on Monday at 5:00pm.