FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (12/5/09) - Senior guard Ebonie Jefferson's jumper in the lane with 12 seconds remaining in overtime put Arkansas State on top 63-62, and the Red Wolves (3-6) went on to post a 65-62 win over the Lumberjacks of Northern Arizona (1-7) Saturday afternoon at the Rolle Activity Center on the NAU campus.
Jefferson posted a double-double on the day, leading all scorers with 23 points to go along with a team-high 11 rebounds. Junior forward Shay Scott also finished with a double-double, recording 16 points and 10 rebounds on the afternoon.
Arkansas State trailed 62-58 when Northern Arizona's Lauren Hoisington scored on a layup with 1:12 remaining, but the Red Wolves used a three-pointer from sophomore guard Meghan Lewis to cut the Lumberjack lead to a single point at 62-61 with 57 seconds to play. A steal from sophomore guard NeNe Hurst on the ensuing NAU possession set up the go-ahead bucket by Jefferson.
Scott denied the Lumberjacks a chance to regain the lead when she blocked a shot from NAU junior guard Vickie Toney with six seconds to play, and ASU freshman guard Quinishia McDowell knocked down two shots from the line with 1.2 seconds remaining to set the final score.
"Ebonie has turned into a big-time player for us and we are a different team when she is on the court," said ASU head coach Brian Boyer. "She changes things with her ability to get to the basket, her effort and her rebounding. In the first half, we weren't getting Shay involved, and that's a team effort. We've got to get her the ball and we did that in the second half. She ended up getting 15 shots and hit just under 50 percent from the field. It was one of her better games and probably her best half of the year."
Arkansas State trailed 26-21 at the half after shooting just 23.7 percent from the floor in the first 20 minutes. The Red Wolves bounced back to shoot 42.9 percent in the second half, with Scott scoring 12 of her 16 points and Jefferson tossing in 15 after the break.
"In the first half we did not play well at all," said Boyer. "All the things we talked about at halftime, I thought we did much better in the second half, and it would have been an injustice had we not won the game. We played better and fought harder in the second half and I think it's a credit to our players that we toughed it out to get the win."
Arkansas State led 54-51 late in regulation, but NAU freshman guard Amy Patton's desperation three-pointer as the shot clock expired tied the game at 54, and neither team was able to score in the final 34 seconds of regulation.
In addition to the double-doubles from Jefferson and Scott, Arkansas State also got nine points and seven rebounds from Hurst, six points from Lewis and four points from McDowell. Senior Lyndsay Schlup added two points and eight rebounds.
With the win, Arkansas State improves to 10-0 in regular-season overtime games under Boyer, including 7-0 in games played on the road.
Arkansas State will be off until Dec. 15 when the Red Wolves return to the ASU Convocation Center to host Texas-Arlington in a 7:05 p.m. contest. The ASU-UTA game begins a three-game home stand for the Red Wolves, who host in-state and Sun Belt Conference rival UALR Dec. 19 and Southern Illinois Dec. 22.
ASU Sports Information