Thursday
Iyana Dorsey and UTRGV picked up another true road win on Thursday. Courtesy UTRGV Athletics.

WBB: Rapid Recap of a Busy Thursday Hoops Slate

It was a pretty busy Thursday across the WAC. Technically, Thursday began the stretch run until conference play begins in four weeks.

Two teams snapped losing streaks. Another remained perfect against the Southland Conference. The WAC preseason favorite fought valiantly but fell against an AP top-25 team. And a team with a Power 5 win last week fell in Florida.

Here is the rapid recap from Thursday.

Southern Utah 71, Texas A&M Commerce 56

The Thunderbirds snapped a four-game losing streak against a transitioning Lions program in a fairly eventful win in Cedar City. Coming out of the gate, SUU went on a 14-0 run culminated by Lizzie Williamson’s layup. And the lead reached 20-2 on another Williamson layup (assists by Daylani Ballena & Sam Johnston respectively). A&M Commerce went on a 16-3 run and closed to within 23-18 but got no closer and fell in part one of a WAC Utah road trip.

Johnston led the T-Birds with 19 points, six assists, and five rebounds. Williamson added 16 points, 16 rebounds and four blocks. They also got 12 points each from Cherita Daugherty who also added five assists and Daylani Ballena who chipped in another six assists.

Dyani Robinson had 23 points in defeat for the Lions.

Southern Utah is at Northern Arizona on Saturday afternoon.

No. 23 Gonzaga 71, Stephen F. Austin 59

In Nacogdoches, the Zags jumped out to a 25-9 lead after a quarter and survived several different Ladyjacks rallies to fly home with a win.

Freshman guard Kyla Deck led the Ladyjacks with 22 points and hit four 3-pointers along with four rebounds and three steals. Aiyanna Johnson added 13 points and five rebounds in defeat.

For the Zags, Kaylynne Truong had 21 points and seven assists to lead the way in a road win. Yvonne Ejim added 19 points with nine rebounds and three assists while Brynna Maxwell added 13 points and 5 rebounds.

The Ladyjacks play three more home games in the four-game home stand. SFA hosts Texas A&M-Texarkana on Sunday. The Ladyjacks then host Arizona State on Dec. 11 and Texas Wesleyan on Dec. 15.

UCF 67, Sam Houston State 55

Cold shooting doomed the Bearkats in Orlando as they fell 67-55 on the heels of a disappointing exhibition loss on Sunday to St. Mary’s, a Division II program located in San Antonio.

Sam Houston State shot just 1-17 from 3-point range and 30.6 percent from the field. Kenyal Perry had 12 points and five rebounds to lead the Bearkats.

Destiny Thomas had 22 points and 18 rebounds to lead the Golden Knights. Mya Burns added 17 points and four rebounds. And Rachel Ranke chipped in 11 points and six rebounds. UCF shot 42 percent from the field and was 5-11 from distance.

The Bearkats four-game road trip continues with a trip to Florida A&M on Saturday.

UTRGV 68, Houston Christian University 51

The Vaqueros led wire-to-wire as they stayed perfect against Southland Conference competition going into a return matchup on Saturday at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.

Iyana Dorsey led UTRGV with 21 points and three assists in the road win. Charlotte O’Keefe added 13 points and 11 rebounds with two assists. Deborah Ogayemi rounded out the double figure scorers for UTRGV with 11 points, eight rebounds, and two assists. The Vaqueros shot 8-18 from 3-point range and 42.1 percent overall.

Julia Vujakovic had 12 points, four rebounds, and three assists to lead Houston Christian University.

UTRGV will head to Texas A&M-Corpus Christ for the second leg of the South Texas Showdown on Saturday.

St. Thomas 62, Utah Valley 43

The transitioning Tommies got a road win at UCCU Arena as the Wolverines remain winless in 2022-23 against NCAA Division I competition. St. Thomas led by as many as 25 points in the win.

Utah Valley was led by Jaeden Brown who had 15 points, six rebounds and three steals. Shay Fano added 12 points and eight rebounds in defeat.

For the Tommies, Sammy Opichka had 18 points and four assists.

The Wolverines visit Utah State and former teammate Maria Carvalho on Saturday.

UT-Arlington 67, Houston  64

After a tough road trip in Florida last weekend, the Lady Mavs got a win against the American Athletic Conference in nail-biting fashion on Thursday in Space City.

Kayla White had 16 points, four rebounds and four assists in the win including a key jumper with 38 seconds and a pair of free throws with 14 seconds left to preserve a late lead. Shyia Smith added 13 points and 12 rebounds. Star Jacobs chipped in with 11 points, five rebounds, and three assists.

Houston got 21 points, four rebounds, and three assists from Tiara Young in defeat.

The Lady Mavs head to Beaumont to take on Lamar on Saturday. And then the Lady Mavs head to Waco to face Baylor on Dec. 7.

About the author

Derryl Trujillo

Derryl Trujillo is a Southern California based sportswriter who won the 2019 Inland Empire Baseball Coaches Association's Supporter of the Year award. He joined the WAC Hoops Digest staff in 2020 and also covers local sports for Inland Sports and the Valley News. Before transitioning to media Derryl was a high school, collegiate and club volleyball official along with serving as a high school basketball scorekeeper for ten years.

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