MONROE, La. – The Texas State women’s basketball team (12-14, 7-7 Sun Belt) overcame a slow start to ground the ULM Warhawks (8-16, 2-11 Sun Belt) by a score of 62-51 on Thursday evening at Fant-Ewing Coliseum.
The victory gives the Bobcats a three-game winning streak for the second time in league play this season.
“I am really proud of the effort from this team tonight,” head coach Zenarae Antoine said. “We had to overcome another slow start. I thought Jazza really worked hard and I was proud of her effort. Bailey was a calming presence for us tonight when we needed it. This was another great team win.”
Senior guard Toshua Leavitt led the Bobcats on the offensive end of the floor. She tallied a game-high 16 points on 4-of-10 shooting from behind the 3-point line. Leavitt added a game-best seven assists, marking her highest assists total since handing out 10 helpers in the win over Texas A&M International on New Year’s Eve.
Junior forward Jazza Johns made her second start of the season and did not disappoint. She recorded a career-high 14 points on 7-of-8 shooting from the floor. She ripped down six rebounds to match a season-high in 30 minutes of play.
For the second-straight contest, junior guard Bailey Holle provided a spark off the Bobcat bench. She matched a career-high effort with 14 points on 6-of-11 shooting from the floor.
She has scored double figures off the bench in consecutive games after converting 13 points in the upset win over Little Rock on Feb. 16. Holle’s effort helped the Bobcats outscore ULM 20-4 in points off the bench.
The Warhawks were led by a pair of double-digit scorers in junior guard Lauren Fitch and freshman forward Jamie Means. Fitch notched a team-high 14 points, while Means added 11 points and five rebounds.
Texas State allowed two early 3-pointers out of the zone defense to give ULM a 6-0 lead less than 90 seconds into the game. The Bobcats recovered to carry a 29-25 lead into the halftime break. Johns scored eight of her 14 points in the opening half of the game.
Much like the first quarter, Texas State struggled coming out of the locker room in the third. ULM scored 10 of the first 11 points in the second half to take a 35-30 lead with 6:46 to play in the third.
Junior guard Brooke Holle disrupted the run after she knifed through the lane and knocked in a contested right-handed layup. The bucket ignited the Bobcats. TXST went on an 11-0 run which culminated in a 3-pointer from the top of the key from Leavitt.
Texas State outscored ULM 21-4 over the last 6:19 of the quarter and led 51-39 after 30 minutes of action.
ULM ramped up the defensive intensity in the fourth quarter in attempt to mount a comeback. The once 14-point advantage was trimmed to six at 55-49 with 2:21 to play on an and-one from preseason all-league sophomore guard Arsula Clark.
Holle answered immediately with a layup on a defensive breakdown and a nice pass from Leavitt. Holle would put the final dagger in the comeback effort after a loose ball found a way into her shooting pocket. She drained an angle-right 3-pointer with 32 ticks remaining to bring the score to the game’s final of 62-51.
Up next, Texas State will matchup with the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns at 2 p.m. on Feb. 23 from the Cajundome. The game will mark the last road games of the regular season for the Bobcats.