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Women’s college basketball: Techsters win overtime thriller on Senior Day

by Russell Hedges

By Kevin Albarado, Louisiana Tech Associate Director Strategic Communications

RUSTON — Louisiana Tech erased a four-point deficit with a minute remaining to force overtime before taking control in the extra period to beat New Mexico State 70-63 on Saturday afternoon in the Thomas Assembly Center.

With the win, LA Tech improved to 11-17 overall and 5-8 in Conference USA, while NM State dropped to 11-15 and 5-8 in conference. The Lady Techsters are now in a four-way tie for fifth in the conference with three games remaining.

Tech found themselves in a six-point hole just two minutes into the contest. The Lady Techsters erased that deficit by the long ball. Salma Bates’ second triple of the quarter cut the Aggie lead down to 13-9 and ignited an 11-0 run. NM State would finish with the final four points of the quarter for a 17-17 tie after the first.

The second stanza was a defensive battle. The teams would combine for 13 points on 6-of-21 from the field and 1-of-9 from deep. Robyn Lee scored the final four points of the half to keep NM State’s lead to just 26-21.

Out of the break, the Lady Techster focused on moving the ball around to find open shots, which paid off. The Lady Techsters quickly erased the deficit and took a 43-39 advantage into the fourth thanks to three separate six-point runs.

Tech got to the foul line early and often in the fourth. After four straight from the charity stripe grew the lead to six, NM State chipped away at the lead and held a four-point advantage with a minute remaining.

That’s when Anna Larr Roberson connected on the 11thg and 12thg free-throw attempts in the quarter to cut it down to 55-53. After an Aggie miss, the Lady Techsters had a chance to tie it up. After NM State knocked the ball out of bounds, Paris Guilloryinbounded to Roberson, circled around her, and received the handoff in front of the Lady Techster bench. Guillory drove to the opposite block and laid the ball up to tie the game with eight seconds remaining.

Amaya Brannon gave Tech the lead four good a minute into overtime. The Lady Techsters closed the game by making 7-of-8 from the charity stripe.

Louisiana Tech finished with five players in double figures, led by Roberson with 14 points and four boards. Brannon and Lee chipped in 13, while Bates and Guillory had 10 apiece.

Ene Adams was the leading scorer for New Mexico State with 15 boards. Sylena Peterson was the only other Aggie in double digits at 12.

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