Box Score Feb. 4, 2016
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RUSTON -- Tyler Summitt was not a happy camper.
Despite Louisiana Tech finding a way to overcome a valiant effort by Rice in a 63-61 Lady Techster victory Thursday night at the Thomas Assembly Center, Summitt was red-faced and visibly frustrated with his team's performance.
"First off, I want to give a lot of credit to Rice," Summitt said. "Those kids deserved to win this game. Tina Langley and her staff are doing an incredible job. They came in here and made it extremely difficult on us, especially on the offensive end of the floor. We were lucky to get out of here with a win."
Jasmine Goodwine scored a game-high 28 points for the Owls (4-16, 3-6 C-USA), who have now lost four games against the top four teams in Conference USA by a combined total of 12 points. However, Goodwine missed a free throw with 13 seconds remaining that would have given the Owls a lead.
Tech (11-9, 6-3 C-USA) capitalized. Following a timeout, the Lady Techsters got the ball inside to Brandi Wingate, who drew a foul with 2.1 seconds to play. Wingate, who finished with 20 points and nine rebounds, calmly sank both free throws to give the Lady Techsters a two-point advantage.
The game wasn't over. Following a Rice timeout, the Owls inbounded the basketball to Shani Rainey who drove down the middle of the lane and was fouled with 0.3 seconds to play. With a chance to tie, Rainey missed both free throws and the Lady Techsters won for the sixth time in the last eight games.
"You have to do more things right than we did tonight to come out with a W," Summitt said. "They are at the free throw line, and we really missed two box outs. We foul as the kids driving. We said no threes and no fouls, and we foul. There were some things I thought we did the right way, but overall it was pretty poor execution.
"There is a bigger picture. This is not Lady Techster basketball. I thought we had a great crowd and maybe it was an exciting game for them, but I would have rather see them watch the basketball we want to play. That is playing hard on both ends of the court."
The 1,925 fans in attendance saw a game that included 19 ties and 20 lead changes. Tech's biggest lead of the night came at 36-29 early in the third quarter. Rice's biggest lead in the game was four points.
How even was it? Rice led for 14:51 of the game. Tech led for 14:45 of the game. It was tied for 10:24. Tech held a slim 30-29 halftime advantage after overcoming foul trouble in the post in the opening 20 minutes. Tiara Davenport had three fouls at halftime while Wingate, Reauna Cleaver and Kevione Moten each had two fouls. Tech was also playing without starting point guard Brooke Pomroy, who missed due to an injury.
"Tiara had three fouls. Brandi, Cleaver and Kevione had two fouls," Summitt said. "Our hands are tied, even if we had Brooke. It was good to see players playing minutes that normally they don't get. I thought Ruby was the main one that really came in and played hard. She has earned some minutes for this North Texas game and if we have to take a guard out and put her in, that is fine. I am very disappointed in a lot of our other guards. At the end of the day we got the win. I did not think we deserved it, but we pulled it out despite the end of the day."
The fourth quarter alone saw six ties and seven lead changes. Rice took a 58-55 lead on a three-pointer by Gabby Stanton with 5:32 to play in the final stanza, but it would be the last field goal that the Owls would make in the game. Rice missed its last seven field goals of the game and seven of its last 10 free throws.
In addition to Wingate scoring 20 or more points for the fifth straight game, Ashley Santos added 12 points and Jasmine LeBlanc added 10 points.
Tech returns to action Saturday at 6 p.m. when it hosts North Texas at the Thomas Assembly Center.