Women's hoops take road win against the Panthers
The Lady Red Wolves clinched a key conference victory on Saturday defeating the Georgia State Lady Panthers 80-75 at GSU Sports Arena.
In a battle where the league leading Red Wolves (15-8, 9-2 Sun Belt) took on a tough Panthers squad (10-12, 6-4 Sun Belt), junior guard Hanna Qedan led the way in the first half, scoring 13 points on 4-of-7 shooting from three point land. She began the game in style by drilling three straight 3-pointers. Qedan would proved to be the catalyst that would push the Red Wolves throughougt the evening.
The Red Wolves were behind early 17-14 with 11:24 to go in the first half, with Qedan and sophomore guard Aundrea Gamble combining to score all of the points for Arkansas State.
Qedan ignited a 10-2 run for the Red Wolves when she hit her fourth 3-pointer of the first half at the 9:52 point.
A-State increased their lead to 26-21 after senior forward Jane Morrill’s jumper with 5:38 to go in the half.
Georgia State rallied with their own 10-2 run to take a 31-28 lead but the Red Wolves closed the half on a good note.
Gamble knotted the game with 43 seconds to go in the half, and sophomore forward Jalen O’Bannon finished a fast break opportunity to give Arkansas State a 35-33 lead going into the break.
The score was tied at 45 with 14:50 left in the game, when O’Bannon scored a layup that ensured A-State’s permanent lead down the stretch.
Georgia State trimmed the lead to 70-67 with 2:47 left after Panther sophomore guard Ashlee Cole drained a 3-pointer, but Morrill answered the bell with consecutive clutch buckets to extend the lead to seven points (74-67) with 1:26 left.
Georgia State cut the lead to three (78-75) with 43 seconds to go, but freshman guard Jamie Ruffins and O’Bannon made huge free throws, making 2-of-4 combined to clinch the win.
“There was never a huge run in the second half and we just kept battling and battling with them,” said head coach Brian Boyer in a press release.
“We just kept hanging in there with four and six point leads and we were able to knock down some key free throws at the end of the game.”
Morrill scored 17 of 22 total points in the second half, on 8-12 shooting from the field, and 5-6 shooting from the foul line.
Jalen O’Bannon had double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds, and Aundrea Gamble chipped in with 11 points also.
“We did a lot of good things throughout the course of this game,” Boyer said.
“I loved our toughness in the second half to not only build the lead but to be able to fight off a very good Georgia State team. I never thought that we got too rattled throughout the course of the game and we played really well at there at the end.”
The Red Wolves had a subpar shooting night shooting 43.1 percent (25-of-58) from the field and 69.4 percent (25-of-36) from the foul line.
Arkansas State will hit the road against with South Alabama 11:30 a.m. Feb. 12 at the Mitchell Center.
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