HUNTSVILLE – The Sam Houston State Bearkats moved to 4-2 in Southland competition as they took a wire-to-wire victory in a 66-55 home win over Northwestern State on Wednesday evening at Johnson Coliseum.
SHSU (9-7, 4-2 Southland) held Northwestern State (6-11, 1-5 Southland) to 23 percent shooting from the field and 20 percent from behind the arc as they collected their fourth conference win.
Lydia Baxter scored 16 points and grabbed a career-high 19 rebounds. The double-double was Baxter’s seventh in the last nine games and moved her into sole possession of the eighth spot in all-time career rebounds in Sam Houston State history. The 19 rebounds also tied a season-high in boards among all Southland Conference players this season.
Amber Leggett added 12 points on 5-for-9 shooting to go along with nine rebounds, while Jenniffer Oramas hit a trio of 3-pointers on her way to posting 13 points, eight rebounds and four assists.
Sam Houston led by 10 at the half and would even extend their lead to as much as 24 in the fourth quarter.
HOW IT HAPPENED
The first half was a strong one for SHSU. The team held NSU to 24 percent shooting in the first half (20 percent in the first quarter) and forced nine turnovers that led to 11 points.
Oramas got the scoring started early going 2-for-2 from behind the arc in the first period. The second three-pointer would put the team up 8-2.
NSU tried to force the Bearkats into early turnovers with a full-court press. SHSU would respond however by advancing the ball quickly and keeping their turnovers to a minimum.
Sam Houston did not concede a three-pointer to the Lady Demons until 3:49 in the second quarter, and it would be the only 3-pointer for NSU in the first half.
The second half was more of the same for SHSU as they outscored the Lady Demons by a 21-11 margin in the third quarter and pushed the lead all the way up to as much as 20 points thank to continuous defensive pressure.
The lead would balloon to as much as 24 and the Kats, and despite NSU getting the deficit down to 11 the result had already been decided.
The Bearkats will remain at home as they prepare to host league-leading Lamar on Saturday at Bernard G. Johnson Coliseum. Tipoff is set for 3:00 p.m. and will be aired on ESPN3.