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Women's Basketball: Late Surge Pushes Louisiana Past Little Rock, 54-45
Ragin’ Cajuns return home riding a four-game winning streak after Arkansas road sweep
LAFAYETTE – Entering the fourth quarter with the score knotted up at 34-34, Louisiana finished off the final 6:04 of Monday night's game on a 17-3 run to extend its winning streak to four games with a 54-45 victory over Little Rock.
With the win, the Ragin' Cajuns (5-5, 4-1 Sun Belt) earned their first victory in Little Rock since Jan. 7, 2016, when they defeated the Trojans, 65-58. The result also secured back-to-back wins for Louisiana over Little Rock for the first time since it won three-straight games from Feb. 24, 2005, to Dec. 28, 2006.
Despite not making a field goal in the first 12:30 of the game, Louisiana finished the contest shooting 40 percent (17-for-42) from the floor, aided by a perfect 6-for-6 shooting effort in the fourth quarter.
Junior Destiny McAfee propelled the offense during the final push, scoring nine of her team-high 14 points in the fourth quarter. She was joined in double figures by Skyler Goodwin, who added 12 points and fell two rebounds shy of a double-double with eight boards.
Similar to Goodwin, senior Ty'Reona Doucet also just missed out on a double-double after producing nine points and 12 rebounds. Doucet also aided in the defensive effort with a game-high three blocks and two steals.
Little Rock (6-6, 2-3 Sun Belt) led from the opening tip, roaring out to an 11-3 lead 3:53 into the game. Six made free throws sprinkled throughout the quarter got Louisiana on the scoreboard, but the Trojans finished the opening 10 minutes of play up 17-6 after a made jumper from Alayzha Knapp.
The Ragin' Cajuns finally knocked down their first field goal 2:30 into the second quarter when Doucet saw her layup fall. The make was a turning point in the contest, sparking a 12-4 run that was capped by a Goodwin 3-pointer to give Louisiana its first lead of the game at 22-21.
The Trojans answered with back-to-back triples to go back on top, but Kimberly Burton, who finished with five points, pulled her team within 27-25 at the break after converting the old-fashioned three-point play with 25 seconds left in the half.
Both offenses struggled in the third quarter and combined to produce just 16 points, but a layup from sophomore Makayia Hallmon tied the game up at 34-34.
Little Rock's Mayra Caicedo's 3-pointer with 6:04 remaining gave the home team a 42-37 lead, but Louisiana responded by putting together a monster 17-3 run in the remaining time with the help of clutch shooting and lockdown defense to snag the 54-45 victory.
Louisiana will play at home for the first time since taking on McNeese State on Dec. 9, 2020, when its welcomes Texas State to Acadiana on Friday, Jan. 29, and Saturday, Jan. 30. Tipoff is at 6 p.m. CT on Friday and 4 p.m. CT on Saturday with both contests being broadcast on ESPN and ESPN1420 AM.
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