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Women's Basketball: UL women drop tough contest to Georgia Southern on the road

Special to the Advertiser, Feb. 7, 2019

STATESBORO, Ga. — Despite a strong start to the second half, UL's women's basketball team came up short in a Sun Belt Conference matchup, falling 79-71 to the Georgia Southern Eagles at Hanner Fieldhouse on Thursday evening.

Sophomore center Ty'Reona Doucet finished with 19 points and 14 rebounds to record her 10th double-double of the season, while freshman guard Brandi Williams tied a career-high with 25 points, scoring 20 points in the second half, to lead all scorers in the game. Sophomore guard Jomyra Mathis added 14 points of her own, giving UL three scorers in double figures when the game wrapped up.

UL (6-16, 4-7 SBC) shot 47.4 percent from the field, for its best shooting percentage during conference play so far this season, but the Eagles (7-14, 2-8 SBC) just about matched UL's performance from the field, shooting 45.3 percent to pull away in the end.

UL came out and started the game strong, building a five-point lead thanks to Doucet's fast start where she scored seven points during the first six minutes of the game.  Georgia Southern then responded. Sparked by a basket from Alisha Owens, the Eagles scored seven unanswered points and took a lead they would not give back for the remainder of the quarter.

The Ragin' Cajuns cut into Georgia Southern's lead over the first three minutes, and a three-point basket from Williams at the 6:55 mark of the quarter tied things up at 23-23.  Both sides then traded leads through the middle portion of the quarter, and a pair of Doucet free throws with 2:03 left, followed by a Doucet layup tied things up at 35-35.

The Eagles then wrapped up the half with a 6-0 run, quickly hitting back-to-back three-point baskets to push the score to 41-35, giving the Eagles a six-point lead heading into the break.

When the Ragin' Cajuns came out of the locker room, they immediately jumped on the Eagles ripping off an 11-0 run that was started by Mathis' basket made from the free throw line. During the stretch, Williams scored six of UL's 11 points in a run that would eventually finish with UL having gone 13-3 to take a 48-45 lead with five minutes to go in the quarter. 

UL pushed its lead to three points over the next few minutes, but a big unsportsmanlike foul called on junior forward Kendall Bess with 1:25 left in the quarter, flipped the momentum in the game and Georgia Southern finished the period on a 7-0 run to retake the lead heading into the final quarter.

Georgia Southern rode the momentum of the final 1:30 of the third quarter to start to pull away from UL. Twice over the first five minutes, Georgia Southern stretched its lead to eight points, with UL attempting to cut into the lead several times and keep the Eagles within arm's reach.

At one point in the quarter, powered by a 9-2 run, Georgia Southern stretched its lead to a game-high 13-point lead, putting the score at 75-62, with 2:16 remaining in the game.  A strong effort from UL over the final two minutes, pulled the Cajuns within six points and with 48 seconds left the score sat at 75-69.  But the last ditched effort from UL was too little too late, and Georgia Southern held UL off to come away with a 79-71 victory.

UL wraps up its weekend with a visit to Atlanta to face the Georgia State Panthers on Saturday. That game at the GSU Sports Arena, is scheduled for a 1 p.m. tip and will be broadcast on ESPN�.