SAGU edged by Langton, 52-51
Lady Lions battling for berth in RRAC tourney
Game saw seven lead changes; Lugo stars in setback
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- In a game that featured seven lead changes, the Southwestern Assemblies of God University women’s basketball team finished on the down side of a 52-51 ball game on Monday night at the Sheaffer Center.
Langston University, the six-time defending league champions of the Red River Athletic Conference, held off the Purple Pride in the closing seconds for the narrowest of victories.
"Our young ladies continue to make strides," said a proud Head Coach, Arlon Beadles. "We had our chances and almost pulled it off. We're a very young ballclub and so many players are improving."
"We rebounded well and competed well," he continued. In recent weeks he has seen elevated performance by much of his team, including some who had limited success previously. "We're getting there!"
After SAGU built their largest lead, 37-31, with fifteen minutes remaining in the game, the visiting lady Lions came back to tie the game at 39.
SAGU’s final lead came at 42-41 on a Bethany Krock (San Antonio, Tx / Cornerstone Christian) three-point basket. She took a pass from Sierra Hankins (Welch, Ok / Welch HS) and fired from the left wing.
Langston, who won the first meeting between the teams in December, 62-46, took the lead for good on their next possession.
Junior guard Jasmyne Randolph launched a triple from the top of the key as the orange-cladded guests went on top to stay, 44-42, with 6:48 on the clock.
They added two more buckets; all attacking the interior for layups and a 48-43 advantage lead.
After Andrea Lugo (San Antonio, Tx / Somerset HS) sank a pair of free throws, Langston pushed their lead to 52-46 when Randolph converted a midcourt turnover into a breakaway deuce with 3:13 to go.
Needing defensive stops, Southwestern held Langston scoreless the remaining 3+ minutes.
SAGU misfired on three consecutive trifectas before Jessica Sodich (Arlington, Tx / Ovilla Christian) gunned a trey from the baseline, thanks to a pass from Lugo.
By forcing a Randolph turnover, Southwestern had the ball, trailing by three. With Langston shutting off the perimeter, Lugo fed a slashing Sodich for an inside layup with 0:23 remaining.
Amber Coleman was fouled, but missed the front end of a one-and-one. The rebound went off a SAGU player’s hands, giving possession back to Langston. They executed a “keep-away” drill that milked the clock down to three seconds.
SAGU’s last chance was a three-quarter court-length heave by Lugo that was off the mark.
Team Purple held their own against Langston, who are rebuilding under new head coach David Johnson.
They forced 27 turnovers and were within 27-22 on the boards. The lack of an inside scoring threat to counter Langston was apparent, but the SAGU guards competed well and are not backing down to anyone.
After making 43% of their shots (9-of-21) in a first half that saw SAGU overcome a 19-11 deficit by taking a 30-27 lead into intermission.
Free throws by Taylor Hill (Waxahachie, Tx / Waxahachie HS) and Lugo jump-started the comeback. SAGU took the lead, 26-25, when Lugo turned a steal into a basket by hitting Brittany Griffin (Rockwall, Tx / Rockwall Christian) in the low block.
Two second half plays keyed SAGU during their largest lead.
Hankins swiped a pass that led to a Lugo score, then Kassy Cox’s (Lufkin, Tx / Lufkin HS) rebound led to a Lugo (LOO-go) bucket in transition to go up, 39-34. She weaved her way past two defenders, than knifed into the paint to score.
The Lions are now 7-15 overall and 4-11 in the RRAC. They are tied for eighth in the RRAC with Jarvis Christian College. LU is 8-12 and 8-7.
Lugo led the local Lady Lions with 13 points, while Sodich and Krock produced 11 and 10 points respectively. Hill netted eight. Hankins and Lugo both racked up four steals while Cox was tops in rebounds with eight.
Krock has now reached double-figures in four of the past five games since earning more playing time. She failed to score more than six in the first 15 games.
Lugo's 13 was a season-best. She's averaging about nine points per game over the past five since she moved from point guard to the wing. Her career high was 16 a year ago against Dallas Christian College.
Earning high honors was LU’s Vicoria (VICK-oar-e-ah) Felix, a 6’0 senior. She finished with 17 points and 10 boards. Randolph added 10 points.
Langston swished 7-of-10 free throws while SAGU made 13 out of 19.
Lady Lions to host Wesleyan Women on Saturday
SAGU will be back on the court this Saturday afternoon when Texas Wesleyan University visits the Sheaffer Center. The women’s game is set for a 2:00pm (CST) opening tip.
SAGU Sports Live will air the game in high definition on-line. The pre-game show will begin approximately at 1:45pm.
Six of the SAGU’s final eight games are at home.