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Emily Carver
Emily Carver once again led the Mountaineers with 15 points.
photo courtesy of Appalachian State Athletics

Appalachian State Women’s Basketball Loses to Louisiana

App State women’s basketball team fell to Louisiana, 65-51, at the Holmes Convocation Center on Saturday.

Despite some hot 3-point shooting by the Mountaineers in the first quarter, the Black and Gold faced a scoring drought in the second half that gave the Ragin’ Cajuns enough momentum to go on a 17-0 scoring run in the final period.

“I thought there were just two stretches in the game that really hurt us. It was the end of the second quarter when junior Faith Alston picked up her second foul as well as redshirt senior Janay Sanders, and we struggled to score.” said head coach Angel Elderkin. “The first quarter, honestly the way we scored the ball, I was really surprised. I knew we were going to need to get more two’s just because Louisiana’s one of the best defensive teams, not just in the league, but in the country. Most teams are scoring 40 against them, 50, so at halftime I felt like we were in good shape, but we had another lull in the third quarter with four turnovers in a row where we could have gotten some momentum, because they were coming off steals. That could have given us a run-out, but we were unable to convert.”

“Then in the fourth quarter I was just really disappointed with the way that we finished, but I think we just have to go back and spend Monday on a ‘mental Monday’ and unpack the last two games and how we’re winning and how we’re losing. Rebounding continues to be an issue for us and so we’re got to shift our focus. I thought our zone looked good, but in order for us to play it we’ve definitely got to be able to box out. So, the 15 second-chance points really hurt us.”

Sophomore Emily Carver netted a team-high 17 points and drilled five treys, shooting 3-of-3 in the first quarter alone. Alston contributed 16 points on the afternoon, going 3-of-4 from the 3-point line, and pulled down five rebounds. Redshirt junior A’Lea Gilbert recorded a team-high six rebounds while Sanders dished out a team-high six assists. Gilbert, Carver, junior Dane Bertolina, and Alston each shot perfect from the free throw line.

App State scored 14 points in the paint and 10 off turnovers.

App State kicked off the game sinking nothing but treys, as Carver tallied two and Alston and graduate student Brooke Bigott each drained one to give App State a 12-4 lead over the Ragin’ Cajuns. Gilbert contributed to the lead with a layup and a pair of free throws. App State closed out the first quarter with a 19-17 edge over the Ragin’ Cajuns.

Carver opened the second quarter by drilling her fourth 3-point bucket of the game, which was quickly followed up by an Alston trey that put App State up 25-20. Layups from Bigott and fellow graduate student Lauren Carter gave the Black and Gold a 29-24 lead, but the Ragin’ Cajuns managed to tie things up at 29 all before closing out the quarter with a 3-pointer from Tamera Johnson that put Louisiana up 34-29.

Early in the third period, a layup from Gilbert and a Carver 3-pointer brought the Mountaineers within one of Louisiana’s lead, 35-34. Alston landed a layup to put App State ahead by one at 36-35. Louisiana regained the lead after a layup and trey of their own. In the fourth and final quarter, Alston, Sanders, and Bertolina combined for 13 points as the Mountaineers faced a scoring drought and Louisiana hit its stride, going on a 17-0 scoring run that sealed the game in favor of the Ragin’ Cajuns, 65-51.

The Mountaineers will head out on their penultimate regular season road trip to take on Marshall in Huntington, W.Va. on Feb. 2 at 6 p.m. before going to Conway, S.C. to clash with Coastal Carolina on Feb. 4 at noon. Both games will be available to stream on ESPN+.