Malone, Anthony Lead @LATechWBB to Road Win
Feb. 24, 2018
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Alexus Malone scored 26 points and grabbed 11 rebounds and Kierra Anthony added 24 points to lead Louisiana Tech to a 70-60 road win over Conference USA league leader UAB Saturday afternoon at Bartow Arena.
Tech (18-10, 9-6 C-USA) built a 19-point halftime lead, pushed it out to 23 early in the third quarter and then held off a furious UAB (22-5, 11-3) rally for the win.
"I thought our effort on the defensive end of the floor really set the tone for today," said Tech head coach Brooke Stoehr. "I thought we brought great energy and effort and really locked in on the scouting report. I was proud of this win. I think our kids were really motivated by the fact we felt like we let the first game get away from us in Ruston (on Feb. 4). They felt like they had something to prove today."
UAB entered the game averaging a league low 12 turnovers per game, but Louisiana Tech's man-to-man defense forced the Blazers into 11 first quarter turnovers and 21 for the game. The Lady Techsters capitalized on the defensive end of the floor and turned the turnovers into points, building a 20-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Malone scored eight points in the first quarter and 10 more in the second quarter, including back-to-back three-pointers in the final three minutes of the stanza to push the Lady Techster lead to 37-17. Tech led 39-21 at the half holding the Blazers to just 24 percent (6-25) shooting.
Tech came out of the locker room strong in the third quarter. Taylor Stahly's three-pointer -- extending her program record to 28 straight games -- with 8:34 to play pushed the advantage out to 46-23. UAB wasn't done.
Behind the shooting of junior guard Deanna Kuzmanic, the Blazers came storming back. Kuzmanic scored 12 of her game-high 35 points during a 21-4 run as her three-pointer with 1:31 to play in the third quarter closed the cap to 50-44.
"I called a timeout and told them we needed to get stops on the defensive end," said Stoehr. "I thought we had lost our intensity on that end of the floor. I think we hit a big shot out of the time out and then got some stops. I think that run was huge for us."
Anthony drained a three-pointer coming out of the timeout and then added another jumper on Tech's next possession. Malone ended the quarter with a three-pointer from the left wing as Tech regained the momentum with a 58-44 lead.
The fourth quarter saw 10 more minutes of UAB trying to fight its way back and Louisiana Tech providing an answer. Kuzmanic continued her shooting, scoring 10 of UAB's 16 points in the fourth quarter. Twice in the quarter, the Blazers cut the deficit down to six points but each time Tech answered as the Lady Techsters matched its win total from last year with its 18th of the season.
Malone recorded her eighth double double of the year with a season-high tying 26 points and 11 rebounds to go along with four steals and two assists. Anthony's 24 points were a season-high as she added six rebounds and four assists. Anthony's layup with 5:46 to play in the third quarter made her the 42nd member of the 1,000-Point Club in LA Tech history.
UAB entered the game ranked No. 1 in C-USA in field goal percentage and No. 2 in scoring but Tech held the Blazers to just 36 percent shooting and 60 points -- 15 below its average.
Tech will end its regular season Thursday when the Lady Techsters travel to face Rice at 5 p.m.
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