The midnight oil was burning again as Sam Houston State’s women’s basketball team stole an overtime thriller Thursday in Hammond, La.
The Bearkats were trailing the Southeastern Louisiana Lions 75-72 with 26 seconds remaining in regulation – similar to their tight tangle with Nicholls State the Saturday before.
After the clock whittled down to four seconds, senior guard Jasmine Johnson sank the game-saving three, sending the contest into overtime.
“That’s what seniors are supposed to do,” head coach Brenda Nichols said. “We definitely got the ball into the right hands.”
Johnson went 9-of-20 from the field, shooting 3-of-9 behind the 3-point line.
Along with Johnson’s 26-point showcase, junior post Angela Beadle knocked down 34 points for the night, just four points shy of tying a school record set in 1990. Beadle’s impressive night led her to being named Southland Conference Player of the Week.
Despite a 60-point tandem between Johnson and Beadle, SHSU had a slow start defensively. The Bearkats trailed by 11 points midway through the first half.
The Bearkats steadily chipped away at the Lions’ lead, finally cutting it down to four points, 34-30, at intermission.
SHSU’s resolve continued into the second half as they had an answer for each of SELA’s scores, including an early three-point dagger from sophomore guard Amanda Barnes.
However, with just under eight minutes remaining in the second half, the Lions’ offense took control of the game.
With 7:01 on the clock, SHSU found itself in a 17-point deficit, but the offense started churning off of a Beadle lay-up. The Bearkats ran with the spark, going on a 29-12 scoring spree to even the match at 75-75 at the end of regulation.
SHSU clung to a little life in the overtime period as they never held more than a three-point lead over SELA. With the contest tied at 85-85, a late foul from SELA put Johnson on the charity stripe with 0.6 seconds remaining. She drained the first one, giving the Bearkats another thrilling, late-game victory.
However, it was a completely different type of game when SHSU faced the University of New Orleans Saturday.
The Bearkats routed the Privateers 78-47 with Beadle posting 15 points and eight rebounds to lead the way.
SHSU controlled the floor early in the first half, taking a 20-8 advantage with 8:24 on the clock. New Orleans struggled to get any offense rolling as they only managed to score six additional points by the end of the first half, leaving the score at 32-14.
The Bearkats didn’t ease off of the gas pedal in the second half. They rendered New Orleans scoreless for 18 minutes.
The Privateers didn’t hit a shot until four minutes into the second half.
SHSU capitalized on their scoring momentum, extending their 18-point advantage to 31 points by the close of the game.
“Our girls played well today,” Nichols said. “We played more man defense today and the girls really believed in it.”
The Bearkats will continue their road tour as they visit San Antonio to matchup with the University of the Incarnate Word on Thursday evening.