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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Bobcat comeback falls short against Arkansas State

Texas+State+junior+guard+Kennedy+Taylor+%283%29+dribbles+the+ball+around+a+University+of+Louisiana+at+Lafayette+defender%2C+Friday%2C+Jan.+1%2C+2021%2C+at+Strahan+Arena.+The+Bobcats+won+71-63.

Texas State junior guard Kennedy Taylor (3) dribbles the ball around a University of Louisiana at Lafayette defender, Friday, Jan. 1, 2021, at Strahan Arena. The Bobcats won 71-63.

Texas State women’s basketball (4-4, 1-2 Sun Belt) lost the first of two games against the Arkansas State University Red Wolves (6-1, 1-0 Sun Belt) 53-54 in the final seconds of a defensive game after its last gasp of scoring fell just short.
After trailing almost all game, the Bobcats’ near comeback saw them fall to .500 on the season as Red Wolves captured their first Sun Belt victory and increased their win streak to six.
The first quarter of the game began with both teams trading defensive stops, three-pointers and tough inside shots. Texas State scored seven straight from the 4:30 to 3:11 mark, leading 11-6 off a three-point jumper by sophomore guard Keslyn King, which was her only made field goal of the game (1-7, 1-5 three-pointers, six rebounds).
Arkansas State responded with an 8-2 scoring run to end the quarter ahead 14-13. The Red Wolves would lose the lead only once until the last 30 seconds of the game. 
During that closing stretch of the first quarter, Arkansas State locked up the inside forcing the Bobcats to take tough shots at the perimeter, often coming up short. This was a pattern that would echo throughout the game.
The second quarter saw the Red Wolves expand their lead and further shut down the Bobcats’ scoring, capitalizing off turnovers on consecutive plays several times. Texas State headed into the locker room at halftime trailing 23-27.
In the first half, Texas State shot a dismal 1-12 three-pointers as it went 9-33 from the field. Arkansas State shot 17-45 field goals and 5-16 from deep in the same time period.
The Red Wolves have junior guard Jireh Washington to thank for their early lead as her nine first-half points led both teams. Senior guard Morgan Wallace was also a top performer in the half. Despite only scoring two points in the first half, Wallace grabbed six rebounds in the period and would finish the game as the Red Wolves leading scorer and with a double-double (12 points, 3-4 field goals, 5-6 free throws, nine rebounds).
Arkansas State continued its tough defense into the third quarter, never allowing the Bobcats to string together a comfortable run for the rest of the period. Texas State’s defense was just as stifling as Arkansas State’s, leading to both teams taking a large number of free throws in the quarter. The Red Wolves were 5-8 from the line as the Bobcats went 3-6. Wallace collected seven of her points in the third, carrying the torch for Washington who scored none.
Texas State needed to rally its offense and keep its net undisturbed, a concept it did not execute at the beginning of the last quarter, falling behind 42-52 with 5:29 left in the game.
The Bobcats’ second wind came at the 5:07 mark as they scored 11 straight to pull ahead 54-53 with 0:30 left in the contest.
The last half-minute moved along in increasingly tense pieces as both teams called timeout after timeout to call their tightest defenses and their best scoring plays. The Red Wolves’ junior forward Trinitee Jackson (seven points, 2-4, 10 rebounds), who frustrated Texas State with her unpredictable post moves and stalwart defense all game long, pulled one last maneuver from her bag to lose her defender and scored from just below the rim to bring Arkansas State back up 54-53 with 0:15 left.
Texas State failed to score after an Arkansas State turnover, fouling and getting the ball back after two missed free throws with one second left. The one-armed, full-court heave by junior guard Kennedy Taylor (11 points, 3-8, five assists, 4-4 free throws) fell short of the basket, and the Bobcats’ efforts ended in vain.
Redshirt sophomore Lauryn Thompson finished with a joint-top 11 points on the night, going 5-9 from the field. The Bobcats missed the regular scoring antics of junior forward Da’Nasia Hood, who averages 17.1 points a game, as well as 8.5 rebounds. Arkansas State limited the damage she normally causes on opposition defenses, keeping her at 10 points (5-15, 0-7), the second-most on the team.
The two teams will square off again at 4 p.m. on Jan. 9 at First National Bank Arena in Jonesboro, Arkansas. The game will be streamed on ESPN+.

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