MONROE, La. (2/1/20) – For the second game in a row, Jireh Washington hit the shot that would prove to be the game-winner, but this time, it came from the foul line.
After drawing a foul with 1.8 seconds to go on the clock with the game tied at 53, Washington’s first attempt rimmed out. Calm and collected, Washington took a breath and knocked down the second shot, giving A-State (9-11, 6-3 SBC) the lead. After ULM (3-17, 1-8) took a timeout that advanced the ball into its half of the court, Morgan Wallace deflected the inbounds pass with Jada Ford right there to steal it away and preserve the 54-53 Red Wolves victory on Saturday at Fant-Ewing Coliseum.
“The difference in the game was that we scored six in the second quarter and they scored five in the third,” head coach Matt Daniel said. “ULM’s been in every game they’ve played this year and they’re going to be a team to be reckoned with in the future. We weren’t great again, but we were good enough and that’s what matters in conference play this time of year”
Three players scored in double figures for the Red Wolves, marking the 11th time A-State has had three or more double-digit scorers. Peyton Martin led the way with 15 points on 6-of-11 shooting, while Wallace scored 11 points to go along with eight rebounds and four steals, giving her 14 games this season with seven or more boards. Ford chipped in 10 points off the bench while picking up her lone steal when it mattered most.
Washington just missed a double-double with nine points and nine rebounds while picking up three steals. As a team, A-State shot 29.7 percent (19-of-64) from the field while dishing out 11 assists on 19 made baskets and allowing just 10 turnovers. Defensively, the Red Wolves forced the Warhawks into 21 turnovers, scoring 15 points off takeaways.
ULM’s Gara Beth Self led all players with 17 points while Whitney Goins added 14 points on four made treys. Jamie Means led the Warhawks in rebounding with nine, as ULM out-rebounded A-State 42-36, although the Red Wolves picked up 14 offensive boards to ULM’s 10.
After Goins scored the game’s first points with a three, A-State went on an 11-2 run powered by Martin, who scored the Red Wolves’ first six points. The Red Wolves stretched their lead out to as much as eight before ULM went on a 7-0 run to cut it to one. A trey by Ford with 1:14 left made it a two-score game, but A-State ended the first quarter with an 18-16 lead.
Self knocked down a short jumper to tie it up at 18 and spark a 12-1 run by the Warhawks to open the second quarter before they called a timeout. ULM held A-State without a bucket until Shameka Tubbs hit a putback off the glass and hit the and-one to cut it to 29-22 with just under four minutes to go in the half.
Wallace hit a layup with 59 seconds to go to cut the deficit down to seven, Self scored four straight at the free-throw line to give ULM a 35-24 halftime lead. The Warhawks shot 60 percent in the quarter while holding A-State to just 11.8 percent shooting.
A-State came out with increased pressure on defense, which turned into 10 straight points, including a back-to-back threes by Payton Tennison and Ford to prompt a ULM timeout. Means halted the run with a layup to put ULM back ahead by three, but the Red Wolves then scored six straight to lead by three with under five minutes to go.
Goins hit her fourth three of the day to tie things up at 40 with 3:29 left, but it would be the last field goal of the quarter for ULM as a Tennison found Wallace at the block for a layup with 1:35 to go to give the Scarlet and Black a 42-40 lead into the final quarter. In the third, A-State outscored ULM 18-5 while forcing six turnovers.
The fourth quarter was back-and-forth the entire way, featuring three ties and six lead changes. After Self hit a three with 5:06 to go that gave ULM a two-point lead, Means knocked down a jumper to put the Warhawks ahead 51-47 with just over two minutes on the clock. A-State then ended an over four-minute scoring drought with an inside basket to spark a 4-0 run that would tie the game with under a minute left.
Self knocked down a jumper with 36 ticks left on the clock to once again hand ULM a two-point lead at 53-51, but Martin responded with a key game-tying basket with 22 seconds left before Washington ended things at the line.
Arkansas State continues its three-game road swing Thursday, traveling to Atlanta to take on Georgia State at 5 p.m. CT before traveling to Statesboro to face Georgia Southern on Saturday. Both contests will be aired live on ESPN+ while the broadcast can be heard on the EAB Red Wolves Radio Network on 95.3 The Ticket, as well as 970 AM and 96.9 FM.
For the latest on the A-State women’s basketball program, follow @AStateWB on Twitter and @astatewbb on Instagram, while also liking the team’s Facebook page at Facebook.com/RedWolvesWBB.
Original article source: https://astateredwolves.com/news/2020/2/1/womens-basketball-late-game-heroics-lift-a-state-past-ulm.aspx | Article may or may not reflect the views of KLEK 102.5 FM or The Voice of Arkansas Minority Advocacy Council