After back-to-back losses, the Wildcats earned their first victory in February, defeating the Northwestern Louisana Lady Demons, 84-69.
The game stayed close through the first half, full of runs and seven lead changes. However, the momentum shifted as soon as the third quarter started. At this time the Wildcats took control, extending their lead throughout the remainder of the second half.
“We changed our defense up a little bit and made the adjustment for the third quarter, and our players did a really nice job of bringing more of that defensive intensity,” Head Coach Julie Goodenough said. “If you can hold an opponent to 10 points in a quarter, that’s a really good defensive effort.”
The Wildcats’ defense played one prominent part in the win on Wednesday. The Wildcats held the Lady Demons to only 4-11 shooting in the third quarter and brought in 10 steals throughout the game. These steals led to many fast break opportunities, where the Wildcats held a 36-26 point advantage.
Along with defensive efficiency, ball movement on the offensive side played a considerable role in this game. The Wildcats tallied up 23 assists, eight of which were from senior guard Breanna Wright. With the help of ball movement, the Wildcats’ shot 49.2% from the field, proving to be overwhelming for Northwestern’s defense.
“We did a lot better on the defensive end and once we picked it up there, it helped us on the offensive end,” senior guard Dominique Golightly said, “Once you get good defensive stops then we usually transition to great offense and that includes making the extra pass to the teammate.”
Golightly proved to be a spark on both ends of the floor. Golightly scored a career-high 29 points, shooting 55.5% from the field and 70% from three-point range. On top of those 29 points, she also acquired four rebounds, three steals, one block and one assist.
“I feel like what we worked on this week we really utilized and used what we focused on,” Golightly said, “I just feel like we played really good team basketball today.”
The Wildcats are hitting the road once again, facing off against the Lady Cardinals of Lamar University, which will be live at 2:00 p.m. on ESPN3.
“We’ll just take it one day at a time,” Coach Goodenough said. “Tomorrow we’ll focus on Lamar. We’ll celebrate this victory tonight, and then tomorrow we’ll get right back to work and figure out what to do in order to be successful at Lamar.”