SHERMAN, Texas – The Austin College women's basketball team overcame some cold shooting to pull away late and end the regular season with a win, topping Rust College 56-44 on Sunday afternoon. The 'Roos wrap up the regular season with a record of 18-7.
The 'Roos entered the game ranked second in the nation in three point percentage, but hit just 1-of-12 from long distance in the first half on their way to a slim 23-19 halftime lead. Both teams struggled out of the gate, with Rust making just two field goals in the first quarter and the 'Roos holding a 10-6 lead after one, and the offense didn't get much better in the second.
Austin College hit just 5-of-20 shots in the second but managed to take the lead into halftime thanks in large part to seven offensive boards in the quarter. Austin College held a 23-15 lead with 2:06 left before the half, but Rust scored the final four points, including a basket by Jasmine Golden to cut it to a four point margin at the break.
The 'Roos started to take control of the game in the third, with Katie Gowdy knocking down two three pointers as the lead grew to 39-31 heading into the fourth, and after the Bearcats scored the first seven points of the final frame the 'Roos used a 15-2 run to finally pull away, leading by as much as 14 twice during the final three and a half minutes of the game.
Gowdy scored 14 of her game-high 16 points in the second half, and finished the game hitting 6-of-13 shots overall and 3-of-8 from long range. She also added eight rebounds and two assists. Bryce Frank was the only other 'Roo in double figures, scoring 13 points and grabbing seven rebounds, while Kendall Heitmeier pulled down 11 boards in the win.
Golden and Narissa Hooks each scored 14 points for the Bearcats, and Hooks added a game-high 16 rebounds in the loss.
The 'Roos head to Shreveport, Louisiana next weekend for the SCAC Tournament, where they'll be the No. 2-seed and play on Saturday night after a first round bye. Austin College will take on the winner of No. 3-seed Schreiner and No. 6-seed and host school Centenary College.
Austin College athletic teams participate as a member of the NCAA Division III and the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference.