Sugar Bears tame Lady Lions 79-61

The Sugar Bears basketball team showcased their offensive capabilities during their blowout game against the Southeastern Louisiana Lady Lions whom they beat 79-61 Saturday afternoon.
The Lady Lions could not keep up with the offensive pressure the Sugar Bears had on Feb. 26 and were down by 15 going into halftime with a score of 40-25. The Sugar Bears continued to break through the Lady Lions’ defense throughout the second period and added even more to their large lead. With 5:07 left in regulation, the Sugar Bears took a 30 point lead over the Lady Lions when sophomore forward Desiree Rogers hit a layup with an assist from sophomore forward Britney Gowans.
Coach Matt Daniel said it was good for him and his team to get some players in that do not get as much play time not only to get them playing but to keep other players fresh.
“We talked about this in the locker room, Megan [Herbert] had 11 points and three rebounds and it’s not that often that she is like that. This is the time of the year where we got a great game from Nakeia Guiden, Desiree Rogers, Courtney Duever, BG [Britney Gowans] I thought played really well and that is huge.”
During the remaining five minutes, the Lady Lions started to chip away at the Sugar Bears lead but it was not enough to come back from the 30-point deficit of 77-47. Lady Lions redshirt freshman forward Aja Gibson started things off late in the second period for the Lady Lions when she hit one of her two free throws. Senior guard Mary Fountain followed up Gibson’s point with a jumper and then junior guard Kelli Jenkins sank a jumper of her own to make the score 77-52.
Fountain would hit another basket before the Bears had their chance to answer back. Senior center Megan Moss was fouled by Gibson and went to the foul line. Moss sank both of her foul shots to give the Bears their final points of the game and make the score 79-54. Gibson scored two more baskets and junior guard Jessica Sommers made the final basket of the game, a three-point shot with 15 seconds left in regulation.
Daniel said he was proud of the way his team played, especially with the offensive effort.
“We were probably the most patient we have ever been on offense and we were still able to score 79 points,” he said. “We knocked down free throws, took care of the ball, knocked down open shots and we defended the ball.”
Rogers said she thought the entire team played well offensively and they were consistent in their shooting.
“Offensive was not that big of a problem for us today,” she said.
Daniel said he thought the team played a great game defensively as well, considering how his team likes to play a relentless, fast style of basketball.
The Sugar Bears had four players score in the double digits and were led by junior guard Nakeia Guiden who had a career high number of points with 21. Rogers had 12 points during the game and both sophomore forward Megan Herbert and freshman center Courtney Duever had 11. Rogers said the Sugar Bears played well together on the court Saturday afternoon and the mantra the coaching staff kept telling them worked out.
“Coach Daniel has been preaching to us every day to come together as a team and don’t worry about yourself. He wanted us to play as a team and that is what we did today,” she said.
The Sugar Bears shot a 55.3 percent field goal percentage and were 80 percent from the foul line. The Lady Lions had a 48.9 percent from the field and were 76.5 percent from the foul line. The Sugar Bears also had 24 points come from the bench.
The first half of the game was all about the Sugar Bears and during it and the entirety of the game, the Sugar Bears never trailed the Lady Lions. Halfway through the first period, the Sugar Bears had already gone up by 14 points over the Lady Lions. They were not able to get above the 20 point threshold, but came close two times when sophomore guard Micah Rice rolled in a layup to go up by 17, and then again with a layup from Rogers that gave the Bears a second 17 point lead.
The Bears next game will be against the University of Texas at San Antonio Lady Roadrunners at 7 tonight in the Farris Center for their final home game. Daniel said he is looking for the win tonight to cap off a successful season at home and he has a reason personally as a coach.
“I have never beaten San Antonio since I have been here,” he said. “My first year here they went to the NCAA Tournament. Last year, we went down there and we were five seconds away from getting a win and they beat us in overtime. Our kids are aware of what is going on and they are going to play funky style, but we are going to have to prepare early.”

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