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Sam Houston 67 Nicholls 46
Courtesy: Brandon K. Scott/Huntsville Item
Release: 01/14/2012
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Huntsville -- Junior forward Britni Martin scored 16 points and junior guard Chanice Smith added 15 more to lead Sam Houston to a 67-46 Southland Conference women's basketball victory over Nicholls State Saturday afternoon at Bernard G. Johnson Coliseum .

Bearkat freshman center Angela Beadle and junior forward Sequeena Thomas each grabbed 10 rebounds as Sam Houston's out-boarded the Colonels 49-41.  

Sam Houston State is one of only two teams still undefeated in Southland Conference play after the Bearkat women knocked off Nicholls 67-46 Saturday at Johnson Coliseum.

The Bearkats are on top of the Southland's West Division and share the league's best record with McNeese State, last season's undisputed conference champion.

The Sam Houston women picked up where they left off in the previous two games, also double-digit victories. Following Saturday's win, the Bearkats are punishing conference foes by 17.3 points on average.

Still, head coach Brenda Nichols sees room for improvement in a team that appears to already be ahead of the curve.

"Going 3-0 to open up the conference has been great but we still have to take it day-by-day," Nichols said. "The second half we came out and didn't have the intensity. We kind of let them come back on us. But what I like about this team is they keep the fire and they keep fighting."

Junior Britni Martin attacked the Nicholls zone defense early in the game to score the first of her game-high 16 points. Then Martin got after it on defense with two straight steals, the second of which led to a fast-break bucket by point guard Jasmine Johnson.

Before the Colonels knew it, Sam Houston was up 15-4, which prompted a timeout call by Nichols head coach DoBee Plaisance.

The Colonels scored five straight points to cut the Bearkat lead to six. But that was as close as Nicholls would get in this one.

Sam Houston quickly pushed the lead back up to 11 points with a layup from freshman Angela Beadle and a 3-pointer by Martin.

By halftime the score was 34-19 in favor of the Bearkats, who shot 40 percent for the game, compared to the Colonels' 24 percent in the first half and 21 percent for the day.

"I think the defensive effort was great," Nichols said. "I don't think we played a full 40 (minutes) but we played enough good defense to win this game."

Even when the Colonels had open looks, they couldn't capitalize to make the game competitive.

The Colonels went 6 for 33 from the field in the second half and shot 2 for 22 on the game from long range.

"They (Nicholls) didn't have a great shooting night. They are a better team than this and they are going to present some havoc in this league," Nichols added.

"We hadn't had a great shooting night and this was our night, so we're excited."

Chanice Smith shot 60 percent from the field for the Bearkats and scored 15 points. Johnson added nine points and Beadle contributed eight.

Beadle and Sequeena Thomas each had 10 rebounds to lead Sam Houston. Martin also had a game-high seven assists.

The Bearkats return to action on Wednesday when they travel to San Marcos to face Texas State.

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