March 3, 2012
RENO, Nev. -
The University of Nevada women’s basketball team ended the regular season with a 76-72 Senior Day win over Louisiana Tech Saturday afternoon at Lawlor Events Center.
With the win, Nevada improves to (7-22, 3-11 WAC) on the season, while Louisiana Tech drops to (15-14, 8-6 WAC).
Nevada rode the emotions of their four starting seniors early on, jumping out to a 13-4 lead. Louisiana Tech closed the gap on a layup by Jasmine Bendolph at the 12:22 mark to bring the score to 16-10. Nevada responded by hitting several shots from downtown to extend their lead to 12. The Wolf Pack knocked down 4-9 of its shots from beyond the arc in the first half while the Lady Techsters went 2-5. Louisiana Tech cut Nevada’s lead to six on a layup by Tavasha Anderson. Chanelle Brennan’s 10 points led Nevada to a 40-31 lead over Louisiana Tech at halftime.
Louisiana Tech looked determined to get back in the game out of the break. The Lady Techsters got within three points of the Pack on a basket by Shantale Brambale-Donaldson at the 18:06 mark. Nevada exchanged baskets with Louisiana Tech over the next several minutes to maintain a small lead. The Lady Techsters tied the game at 61-61 on two free throws from Bramble-Donaldson. Nevada reclaimed the lead on a free throw and jump shot by Kayla Williams. A made three point shot by Louisisana Tech’s Whitney Jones tied the game at 66-66 with 4:09 left to go. Senior Amanda Johnson’s steal and eighth assist on a Kevorken layup put Nevada up 69-66.
With eight assists in the game Johnson passed Dellena Criner (2005-2009) for third best on the program’s career list. A layup by Jelena Vucinic at the 1:25 mark put Louisiana Tech up 70-69. Senior Amanda Johnson came up big late, hitting a jump shot with 57 seconds to go. The Pack made a strong defensive stand on the Lady Techsters next possession that led to a rebound, putting Kate Kevorken on the line where she made the first and missed the second. Nevada’s missed free throws down the stretch allowed Louisiana Tech to have a chance to tie the game as they were down 75-72 with seven seconds left. The Lady Techsters inbounded a full court pass that was picked off by Kate Kevorken to seal a 76-72 win.
Kayla Williams led all scorers with 20 points. Kate Kevorken added 18 points with nine rebounds and Chanelle Brennan had 14 points and four steals.
Up next for Nevada is a trip to Las Vegas for the Western Athletic Conference Tournament. With the win over Louisiana Tech, the Wolf Pack earned the tie-breaker with New Mexico State and secured the seventh seed in the tournament. Nevada will face the No. 2 seed Utah State Wednesday 2:30 p.m. at the Orleans Arena.