Morrill hits the boards, Boyer's squad picks up road win

LAFAYETTE, LA (ASU) — Sophomore Jane Morrill scored 22 points, senior NeNe Hurst-McLennan added 17 and both players pulled down a team-high eight rebounds to lead the Arkansas State Red Wolves (10-15, 4-8) to a 57-50 victory over the Ragin' Cajuns of Louisiana-Lafayette (5-20, 0-13) in Sun Belt Conference women's basketball action Saturday afternoon at the Cajundome.

With the win, the Red Wolves earned a season-sweep over the Cajuns after defeating ULL 55-52 Jan. 21 in Jonesboro in the season's first matchup between the two teams.

Arkansas State led by as much as 13 in the second half, taking a 47-34 lead when Hurst-McLennan scored inside with 12:27 to play.  The Cajuns chopped ASU's lead to a bucket at 52-50 on a basket by Brooklyn Arceneaux with 3:59 remaining, but the Red Wolves used a short jumper from Morrill to stop the ULL run and make it 54-50 with3:50 to play.

Arkansas State made it a three-possession game when Morrill knocked down a three-pointer with 2:34 remaining, then did the work on the defensive end to shut out theRagin' Cajuns the rest of the way and seal the win.

"I'm proud of the team for the win, and as I told the team in the locker room, it was a frustrating game to play," said ASU head coach Brian Boyer.  "Because of their zone and the way they pack it in, it just sucks the energy out of your team.  It's tough, but the players stuck with it and we played well enough on defense in the important stretches when we needed to."

The Red Wolves led 31-26 at the half behind 12 points and six rebounds from Morrill, and nine points from Hurst-McLennan.  After a hot start by the Cajuns, the Red Wolves took their first lead with 10:47 remaining in the half on a layup from Morrill to go up 15-14, and outscored ULL 16-8 in the remainder of the half to take the five-point leadinto the locker room.

For the game, the Red Wolves tied their season-low with nine turnovers, outscored ULL 32-24 in the paint and topped the Cajuns 17-6 in points off of turnovers.  Louisiana-Lafayette finished with a 40-31 advantage on the boards and shot 42.4 percent from the floor.  The Red Wolves shot 40.7 percent from the floor, 28.6 percent from the three-point line and 60.5 percent from the charity stripe.  ULL went 0-for-9 from three-point range and 0-2 from the line.

Center Josie West led ULL with 14 points, and forward Michelle Brunker added 12.  Junior Quinishia McDowell added eight points and four rebounds for the Red Wolves, and junior Ashley Olvera finished with five points, six rebounds and four assists.

With her blocked shot in the second half, Hurst-McLennan became the only player in ASU history to record 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 250 assists, 200 steals, 100 three-pointers and 50 blocks in a career.  Hurst-McLennan finished the game with three assists and two steals to bring her career totals to 1,203 points, 555 rebounds, 286 assists, 216 steals, 107 three-pointers and 50 blocked shots.

The Red Wolves now return to Jonesboro for the final two home games of the season, hosting Troy Feb. 15 and FIU Feb. 18. Tipoff against Troy is set for 7:05 p.m., while the FIU game will tip at 3:05 p.m., with senior day festivities beginning approximately 10 minutes prior to tipoff.