SAN MARCOS, TX (ASU) — Sophomore Jessica Flanery hit a career-high six 3-pointers as the Red Wolves shot a season best 58 percent in field goal percentage to defeat Texas State 87-71 Saturday afternoon at Strahan Coliseum.
A-State (8-6, 2-0 SBC) trailed 44-39 at halftime but outscored the Bobcats 48-27 in the second half to claim its second straight SBC road victory. Texas State (4-9, 1-1 SBC) held a 51-43 lead four minutes into the second half, but the Red Wolves went on a 19-2 run, which included going 4-for-4 from beyond the arc to go up 62-53 with 10:38 to play and never relinquished the lead.
Flanery scored a career-high 18 points on 6-of-10 shooting from behind the 3-point line, while Aundrea Gamble led the team with 26 points on 8-of-10 shooting. Hanna Qedan finished with 21 points, including a perfect 5-of-5 from the free throw line to improve to 93 percent from the line on the year, which leads the Sun Belt Conference.
"We were struggling offensively early on and big thanks to Jessica Flanery because she came in and gave us a big lift in the first half by knocking down five, 3-pointers," A-State Brian Boyer said. "It wasn't just the points she was scoring because she was able to stretch their zone a little bit and then Hanna and Aundrea were able to attack some."
Over the final 15-plus minutes, Arkansas State outscored Texas State 44-20 and shot 57.1 percent from the field in the second half. For the game, the Red Wolves 58 percent, its highest percentage of the year, while holding the Bobcats to just 41.7 percent from the field, including just a 29 percent mark in the second half.
A-State took a 66-56 lead with 8:15 to play after Jalen O'Bannon make a great pass to Gamble on a fast break opportunity. The lead grew to 84-63 with 2:55 left after Gamble knocked down a 3-pointer to give the Red Wolves their largest lead of the night. Gamble scored 17 of her 26 points in the second half.
"I'm proud of this team because this was not an easy stretch," Boyer said. "We played a top-25 level team in Texas A&M and then two tough road conference games and I could not be prouder of what this team has done. We got two conference wins and competed really well against A&M and I have enjoyed being around this team for this trip because they are such good kids and an enjoyable group of kids to be around."
Texas State got off to a quick start and jumped out a 9-0 lead that prompted Boyer to take a timeout just three minutes into the game. Arkansas State struggled at both ends of the court after missing its first three timeouts and going just 1-of-6 from the field at the first media timeout.
Flanery sparked the Red Wolves however, knocking down back-to-back 3-pointers to close the gap to 15-8 with 14:43 to go in the first half. A-State then used a 10-2 run to cut the lead to 23-18 thanks to five points each from Gamble and Qedan.
The momentum would not last however, as the Bobcats pushed the lead back to 33-21 with nine minutes remaining but Flanery would come up big again for A-State. She added two more 3-pointers, to give her five in the first half that allowed the Red Wolves to cut the deficit to 37-35 with 4:20 thanks to a 13-4 run.
Arkansas State took its first lead of the half when Qedan scored on a putback to go up 39-38, but Texas went on a 7-2 run to close the half to take a 44-39 lead in the break.
Flanery scored 15 points in the first half and hit five 3-pointers, both of which were career highs. Gamble scored nine points in the frame on 4-of-5 shooting while the Red Wolves shot 57 percent (15-26) from the field.
A-State returns to Jonesboro for SBC home conference opener Jan. 8 against Troy and live audio of the game can be heard at AStateRedWolves.com. For in-game updates follow @AStateGameDay on Twitter and stay up to date with A-State women's basketball team by following them on Twitter (@AStateWB), Instagram (AStateWBB) and Facebook (Facebook.com/RedWolvesWBB).