Bearkats' Second-Half Shooting Claws Islanders, 75-54
HUNTSVILLE, Texas – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi women's basketball team led by as many as 14 points in the first half, but Sam Houston State's hot second-half shooting, propelled them to a 75-54 victory Saturday afternoon at Johnson Coliseum.
The Islanders (8-15, 4-6) took a 35-29 halftime lead but the Bearkats powered their way back with 45 second-half points to the Islanders 19 to secure the victory. Myeisha Myles led the Islanders with 11 points and six rebounds, Verne'qua Taylor tallied nine points and five assists while Zoe Vega-Vega and Brandi Huff each added eight points apiece. Alisa Roberts also contributed with seven points, two assists, three steals and led the Islanders on the glass with eight boards.
Sam Houston State (13-9, 8-3) was paced by three players in double-figure scoring. Britni Martin and Sequeena Thomas led all scorers with 21 points apiece. Martin went 4-for-6 from behind the arc while Thomas pulled down a game-high 15 rebounds. Chanice Smith added to the scoring with 12 points and eight rebounds while shooting 3-for-6 from three-point land.
The Bearkats shot 62.1 percent (18-29) from the field in the second half and 85.7 (6-of-7) from behind the arc. The Bearkats outrebounded the Islanders 40-34 and scored 34 of their points in the paint, including 10 fast break points.
Texas A&M - Corpus Christi traded buckets early with the Bearkats before the Islanders went on a 6-0 run. Myles jumper inside the arc pushed the Islanders ahead 8-6. Huff gave the Islanders a four-point cushion with a layup in the paint before Vega-Vega's jumper extended the Islanders lead to six with 15 minutes left to play in the half.
The Bearkats' Jasmine Johnson answered with a 4-0 run to pull within two. Taylor added two free throws before Sam Houston State put together another 4-0 run to even it at 14-14. The teams traded baskets back-and-forth with the Islanders maintaining the lead. Texas A&M - Corpus Christi went on 14-3 run to take a 13-point lead. Huff hit a layup from Imani Dunn to jumpstart the run. Roberts and Taylor added back-to-back three-pointers and Huff added a free throw during the run. Jammer's put-back gave the Islanders a 31-18 lead with 5:18 to play in the half. Smith added a trey from downtown before Jammer's jumper extended the Islanders run.
Sam Houston State ended the half on a 10-2 run, with eight of them coming from Thomas to bring the Bearkats within six with 1:32 to play. Huff added a layup before Khamra Echols layup cut the Islanders lead to 35-29 at the half.
Huff led the Islanders at the half with eight points and four rebounds, while Roberts, Taylor and Myles each added seven points apiece. Myles also chipped in four rebounds, Taylor tallied three assists and Roberts added three steals. The Islanders shot 44.8 percent (13-29) from the field to the Bearkats 35.5 percent. Sam Houston State notched the advantage on the boards, 21-18. Thomas tallied five rebounds and seven points while Smith added six points and four rebounds for the Bearkats.
The Bearkats gained momentum out of the locker room on an 11-2 run to take their first lead of the game since the 18:04 mark in the first half. Sam Houston State took the 40-37 lead with 16:26 to play. The two teams traded layups back-and-forth until Martin's three-pointer gave the Bearkats a five-point advantage. Myles added a layup to cut the lead to three before Thomas' back-to-back layups and free throw pushed the lead to seven.
Marquesha Anderson-Sparks got on the board with her first trey of the game to bring the Islanders within four, 52-48, with 9:30 left to play. The Bearkats extended the lead to 10 on a 12-2 run to lead, 64-50, with 3:12 to play. During the run Vega-Vega triggered two free throws. Myles hit a layup to stop the six-minute dry spell the Islanders went without a field goal. Smith answered with a three from downtown before Jessica Jammer made two from the charity stripe. The Bearkats responded though with eight straight buckets to win 75-65 on a 22-6 run.
The Islanders return to the Coastal Bend on Wednesday, Feb. 15, to take on Texas State in the Play 4Kay Pink Game at the American Bank Center. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m.