Hot starting Bacone rolls by Lady Lions
Hill pours in 20-points in losing cause
SAGU plays at Langston on Monday
MUSKOGEE, Oklahoma -- The Southwestern Assemblies of God University women’s basketball team fell behind early, 6-0, and could never catch up in a 70-57 setback to Bacone College on Saturday night at the Palmer Center.
The defeat dropped SAGU to 4-6 overall and to 1-3 in the Red River Athletic Conference. Bacone snapped a five-game losing streak with their best performance of the season. The Lady Warriors are now 2-5 and 1-3 in the RRAC.
Red hot from the outset, the Tribe made 51% of their shots (17-of-33), enabling them to score 19 points above their season average.
They entered the game ranked 100th in the NAIA with a collective 31% shooting accuracy, so they were overdue.
The Lady Lions regrouped at halftime and stymied the hosts in the second stanza. Bacone connected on just 24% (9-of-37) and were forced into 11 of their 19 turnovers after intermission. But the damage had been done.
Bacone led by 18, 55-37 with eleven minutes remaining, and still led, 67-51, with 4:14 to go. The closest the Purple Pride came after recess was eleven (67-56) with 2:36 to go.
In recent games it was the young backcourt that teams squeezed for turnovers. Bacone, however, could only coerce 13 miscues for the entire game. SAGU was averaging twenty prior to the game.
Instead, it was Southwestern’s interior that was lacking.
Bacone ruled the lane, latching onto a 61-40 margin in rebounds, including a 22-12 upper hand on the offensive glass.
The most boards any SAGU player collected was six, while BC had six players with that many or more, led by Ashley Jenkins. She came off the bench to reel in 12 in just 18 minutes. Kyna Lewis ripped down 11 in only 12 minutes.
Contending to counter early deficit
Team Lioness appeared to have weathered Bacone’s early storm when they rallied to within 13-11 at the 15:09 mark.
Taylor Hill (Waxahachie, Tx / Waxahachie HS) made a steal and got the ball to Jessica Sodich (Arlington, Tx / Ovilla Christian). She assisted a triple by Okevia Bratchett (Center, Tx / Tenaha HS) as the ‘Cats sliced their deficit to two.
SAGU had risen from the canvas with a three-ball from Hill, a trey by Sodich and a pair of Sierra Hankins (Welch, Ok / Welch HS) free throws that preceded Bratchett’s three.
In the next three minutes the Warriors went on a 15-2 run, with SAGU’s lone score resulting in a Kassy Cox (Lufkin, Tx / Lufkin HS) assist to Cordia Harvatin (San Antonio, Tx / Stacey HS).
Bacone led 28-13 and would never be seriously threatened the remainder of the game.
The Lions, however, had one more run left in them.
Following a timeout by SAGU Head Coach Arlon Beadles, the Purple Pride scored eight of the next nine points to trail, 29-21.
Bethany Krock (San Antonio, Tx / Cornerstone Christian) scored on an offensive rebound and Hill thrilled with back-to-back three-balls, the first assisted by Bratchett, the second, in transition, came after a pass from Krock.
Three and a half minutes later the Warriors had reestablished their lead at 39-23.
Following a missed triple by Andrea Lugo (San Antonio, Tx / Somerset HS), Bacone answered with a fast break basket and a 43-25 lead.
It was 44-27 at the break.
Player stat leaders
Hill finished with a game-high 20 points, making 6-of-15 shots, including 4-of-8 from beyond the arc. She had four assists against just two turnovers, and was credited with three steals.
It was Hill’s second consecutive game with twenty or more points and lifted her scoring average to a team best 10.5. She slipped past Bratchett’s 10.1 as the top two active scorers on the team.
Nia Winston (Garland, Tx / Panola JC, Lakeview Centennial HS) was scoring 17 ppg before ending her season last week.
Bratchett added 11 points and Sodich chipped in with seven. The trio combined for SAGU’s six three-pointers. Sodich was tops in rebounds with six.
Emily Lovell, Bacone’s 6’0 center, led three teammates in double figures with 18 points. She also had seven boards.
Bacone’s bench outscored SAGU’s 27-8, making 11 of 29 shots to the Lady Lions’ 4 of 16.
Upcoming Games: Langston on Monday
SAGU will take on Langston University on Monday night at 5:30pm (CST) in Central Oklahoma. LU has won six consecutive RRAC regular season championships, racking up a 116-7 mark against conference foes. Two of their losses came at the hands of SAGU.
The LU Lady Lions, who have been off for finals week, will bring a 1-7 mark into the game. They are 1-2 in league action, having defeated Bacone two weeks ago, 74-68. Monday will be only their second home game of the season.
David Johnson is in his first year on the sidelines of the C.F. Gayles Fieldhouse. He succeeds Jerome Willis, who went 113-24 in four years, including 81-6 in the RRAC. Willis is now the head coach at UT-Permian Basin (6-2).
SAGU’s last home game this month is Thursday, December 13, against LSU-Shreveport.