McMurry gets past LeTourneau 59-50
LONGVIEW – The LeTourneau women's basketball team saw its bid for a late comeback fall short as the YellowJackets fell 59-50 to McMurry in the American Southwest Conference opener for both teams Saturday.
La'Queda Davis (Houston, Texas/Waltrip) scored a game-high 15 points for LeTourneau (0-2, 0-1 ASC East). She shot 5-of-15 from the floor and sank five out of her seven free-throw attempts.
Rikeita Thomas scored 14 points to lead McMurry (2-1, 1-0 ASC West).
Though McMurry never trailed in the game, the visitors from Abilene were unable to distance themselves from the YellowJackets in the first half. McMurry used a 7-0 run between the 7:54 and 3:55 marks of the first period to take a 19-11 lead, the biggest advantage the visitors had before halftime.
The low-scoring first half featured sloppy play and ball control from both sides. The two teams combined for 37 turnovers before halftime, with LeTourneau giving the ball away 21 times.
McMurry was able to pull away from the Jackets in the second half, only to see LeTourneau inch closer in the latter stages of the game. After the Jackets started the half on a 5-0 run to cut McMurry's lead to 23-21, McMurry used a 12-2 run between the 18:37 and 15:25 marks of the second half to take its first double-digit lead of the game.
The visitors led by as many as 18 points at 52-34 with 5:26 remaining in the game, but were unable to coast to the finish line thanks to a 12-1 LeTourneau run that pulled the Jackets to within seven points. Ali Goodwin (Fort Worth, Texas/UT-Dallas) drained a three-pointer from the corner with 2:16 remaining to cut the McMurry lead to 53-46.
The Jackets would eventually get as close as 53-47 when De'Shante Thomas (Whitehouse, Texas/Whitehouse) sank 1-of-2 free throws with 1:30 remaining, but would get no closer.
Freshman point guard Jessica Manas (Haltom City, Texas/Haltom City) scored eight points for the YellowJackets, followed by Laura Hahn (Cuero, Texas/Cuero), who added seven points and blocked two shots.
Goodwin scored six points in the game.
The YellowJackets return to action Monday when they host Hardin-Simmons. Tipoff between the Jackets and Cowgirls is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.