Cowgirls use big first half to hold off Houston Baptist, 73-55

Updated: Feb. 22, 2021 at 10:16 PM CST
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LAKE CHARLES-- McNeese women’s basketball placed five players in double figures Monday night with Lizzy Ratcliff pacing the way with a career-high 17 points to lead the Cowgirls in a 73-55 Southland Conference win over Houston Baptist (7-8, 3-5 SLC).

“We looked a lot better today,” said head coach Kacie Cryer. “We were in a better rhythm and we were flowing a whole lot better on the offensive end. When we get a total team effort, we’re a tough team to beat. Lizzy played tremendously from the get-go. She was scoring, she was attacking and getting stops tonight.”

Ratcliff connected on 5 of 9 of her attempts and canned 3 of 5 treys and 4 of 6 free throws to go along with her six defensive rebounds.

McNeese (6-10, 6-3 SLC) also got double-figure scoring from Le’Shenae Stubblefield (16), Kyla Hamilton (13), and Divine Tanks (10). Tanks and Shaela Gardner led McNeese with nine rebounds apiece while Whitney Johnson pulled down eight rebounds in 12 minutes of action.

“I thought Nae (Le’Shenae) came in and gave us some good minutes and Kyla played well today as well. Divine does what Divine does, she has been steady and very consistent but I thought Whitney came in and really caused havoc which was one of our keys on the defensive end. I thought she played well in the first half and she was a big part in helping us win tonight.”

The Cowgirls took the lead early in the game and never looked back as they held an 18-6 advantage on 8-of-13 from the field in the first quarter.

Leading by 11 points (26-15) with 4:40 left in the second quarter, McNeese went on a 10-0 run to extend the lead to 36-15 before going into the half with a 40-18 lead.

The Cowgirls built its largest lead of the game early in the third quarter on a three-pointer by Ratcliff for a 43-18 lead. HBU would outscore McNeese 15-7 in the quarter to cut the lead to 47-33.

The Huskies got as close as nine points early in the fourth quarter but a three-point play by Johnson pushed the Cowgirl lead back up to double figures (55-43) and McNeese held a double-figure lead for the rest of the game.

McNeese ended the game with a 42.9 field goal percentage on 24 of 56 from the field including 7 of 13 from three-point range.

HBU had three players score in double figures with N’Denasija Collins leading the Huskies with 12 points.

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