Louisiana Women’s Basketball is now one victory away from capping off its historic 50th season with a Sun Belt Conference regular-season title after it defeated Little Rock for the second time this year by a score of 63-52 on Friday evening at the CAJUNDOME.
Now riding a 12-game winning streak that spans all the way back to the beginning of January, the Ragin’ Cajuns (13-5, 12-1 Sun Belt) can clinch their first league title in program history with a win over the Trojans on Saturday afternoon.
Louisiana’s defense came through once again, forcing 19 Little Rock turnovers and registering eight steals. Those turnovers were turned into 18 points on the offensive side of the floor, where the Cajuns were also able to outscore the Trojans, 26-18, in the paint.
Powered by an 18-point outing from senior Skyler Goodwin, the team finished the night shooting at a 41.5 percent (22-for-53) clip from the floor and 50.0 percent (4-for-8) from long range.
Goodwin was joined in double figures by fellow senior Ty’Reona Doucet and junior Brandi Williams, who both notched 10 points in the victory. Doucet also hauled in a team-high nine rebounds and blocked two Trojan shots.
Little Rock (13-9, 9-6 Sun Belt) took its largest lead of the night 2:50 into the game when Krystan Vornes, who posted a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds, knocked down a jumper outside the paint to put the Trojans up 6-1.
The lead did not last long, though, as the Cajuns battled back and used two buckets from Goodwin in the final 1:17 of the opening quarter to push ahead 14-13 after 10 minutes of action.
Senior Kimberly Burton opened the second period with four of her eight points in the contest, sparking what turned into a 13-6 run over the course of the quarter to send Louisiana into the locker room with a 27-19 halftime lead.
Louisiana maintained a healthy advantage throughout the third quarter until Paloma Iradier pulled down her own miss and scored a second-chance layup to pull her side within two points (40-38) with 1:51 to play in the third.
Just over a minute later, Makayia Hallmon, who added nine points on Friday night, buried a triple to push the lead back out to eight points (46-38), but Trinitee Alexander slashed the momentum with a triple of her own with seven ticks on the clock to close the gap to 46-41 through three.
After giving up five-straight points to Louisiana to open the final stanza, Tia Harvey’s made jumper with 6:16 remaining got Little Rock within 51-45. However, the Ragin’ Cajuns went on to outscore the Trojans, 12-7, to secure the 63-52 victory.
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