Nov 12, 2012 11:56 PM by UL Sports Information
The Ragin' Cajuns used an 18-0 run early in the first half and six double-digit scoring performances to defeat LSU-Shreveport 83-42 Monday evening in front of a record shattering 1,007 fans at Earl K. Long Gym. Freshman Sylvana Okde led the Cajuns with 19 points to go along with six rebounds and two assists.
"It's like what we preach every day, we're going to play hard and play with a lot of effort," head coach Garry Brodhead said. "Even though we made mistakes, I was pleased with how hard we played the game. The first couple of minutes we didn't press but once. When we got into our press we took them out of their game. It's what we preach every day, we want to try and dictate and control the game."
After LSU-Shreveport scored the first two buckets of the game, UL's full court pressure denied the Pilots a field goal for 12-consecutive possessions. The swarming Cajuns defense did not allow a field goal for nearly four minutes as the Cajuns scored 18 unanswered points.
With the Cajuns leading 43-18, LSU-Shreveport went on a 9-2 run to end the first half, but the Cajuns still took a comfortable lead holding a 45-27 advantage heading into the break. Okde and Ashley Benjamin led the Cajuns at the half, scoring ten points each.
Okde, who tallied seven of the Cajuns' first 17 points, continued to set the tone offensively in the second half, converting on all three of her opening three-point shots. Fellow freshman Kia Wilridge nearly had a double-double, scoring 11 points and grabbing nine rebounds. Benjamin chipped in 12 points to go along with eight rebounds while Byronesha Santiago contributed ten points and six rebounds. Rounding out the balanced attack was Keke Veal and Brandi Schambough, scoring 11 points respectively.
UL dominated on both ends, holding a 48-30 edge on the glass while connecting on 46.5 percent (33-of-71) of its looks. Louisiana never allowed the difference to dip below 16 in the second half en route to its first 2-0 start since the 2004-05 season.
The Cajuns are next in action Friday at 7 p.m. when they travel to Omaha, Neb. for a game against the University of Nebraska-Omaha.