LAFAYETTE, LA (A-STATE) – The Arkansas State women's basketball team held Louisiana-Lafayette scoreless for the final 3:58 and ended the game on a 12-0 run as the Red Wolves defeated the Ragin' Cajuns 74-62 to extend its winning streak to 13 games.
A-State also matched the best start in school history with a 19-3 overall record and has a four-game lead in the Sun Belt Conference standings over the Louisiana-Lafayette with a 13-0 league mark. The Ragin Cajuns' fell to 16-6 on the year and are now 9-4 in the conference.
Aundrea Gamble led the charge for A-State with 30-point performance, which marked the fifth time in her career that she has crossed the 30-point milestone. She also added 11 rebounds for her third double-double of the year.
Louisiana-Lafayette took a 60-59 lead after a Keke Veal knocked down a 3-pointer late in the fourth quarter, but the Red Wolves answered with a trey by Khadija Brown-Haywood to go up two. Sylvana Okde tied the game with a layup on the other for the Ragin' Cajuns, but A-State would go on a 12-0 from that point to close out the game.
Brittney Gill sparked the run with a layup and Gamble followed with a layup of her own to go up 66-62 with 2:15 remaining. Brittany Fowler provided the dagger with a 3-pointer with 1:40 to make a seven point game.
"Today is one of those where the experience of maturity level of your team gets tested and this team was certainly was up to the test," A-State head coach Brian Boyer said. "Just to see how this team handled going down late in the fourth quarter and then you get Khadija knocking down a 3-pointer on the other end and that just shows how this team doesn't panic."
Brown-Haywood finished with 13 points and eight rebounds, while Gill added 10 points.
Thursday's game featured six ties and 11 lead changes, seven of which came in the second quarter. Gamble scored 22 points in the first half and helped A-State to a nine point lead in the second period when she took over and went on a 10-0 run.
She hit a pair of free throws to put Arkansas State ahead 31-30 with 3:40 left until halftime and then knocked down a 3-pointer in transition after Lauren Bradshaw collected one of her three blocks in the half.
Gamble followed with a mid-range jumper to give A-State a six point advantage and hit her fourth trey of the half after an offensive foul by the Ragin' Cajuns turned into points for the Red Wolves. She finished the half 4-of-5 from beyond the arc and also grabbed six rebounds.
Louisiana-Lafayette jumped out to an 11-4 lead with 4:55 to go in the first quarter after the Red Wolves faced early foul trouble with Jessica Flanery going to the bench. Khadija Brown-Haywood, who scored 10 points in the first half, also played much of the second quarter with two fouls and was forced to sit for offensive-defensive substitutions in the half's final minutes.
The Ragin Cajuns' enjoyed a strong effort from the field and spent much of the opening 20 minutes above 50 percent from the field and finished the half 13-of-27 (48.1 percent)
A-State held a 40-33 lead at halftime break, but Louisiana-Lafayette opened the third quarter on a 10-3 run to tie the game at 43-43 with 6:32 to go in the period. The Ragin' Cajuns took a 47-46 late in the quarter, but Gamble knocked down a pair of free throws to put A-State back in front and Aaliyah Warren followed with a layup on the next trip down to push the lead to 51-47.
A-State will continue its four-game road swing Saturday, Feb. 13, with a 2 p.m. contest at Louisiana-Monroe.
Tickets are on sale for all remaining home games, including four mini game packs. For more information, visit AStateRedWolves.com/Tickets.