Shreveport – The Centenary women's basketball team earned its first victory of the 2019-20 season on Friday as the Ladies earned a well-deserved 61-57 victory over the Southwestern Pirates in Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference play at the Gold Dome.
The Ladies (1-13, 1-6 SCAC) won for the first time since a 63-44 home win over Johnson and Wales on Feb. 9, 2019. Seven of Centenary's losses this season have been by 11 points or less with five single-digit losses, and finally the Maroon and White were able to break through and win a close game.
Junior forward Bre Frierson (Shreveport) scored a career-high 26 points in 26 minutes as she shot 11-15 from the field and made four of six free throws. She added five rebounds and recorded her ninth game (and eighth in a row) scoring in double figures this season. Frierson also topped the 20-point mark for the third time.
She entered the game ranked in the top 10 in the conference in scoring, rebounding, field goal percentage, offensive rebounds and blocked shots. She leads the team averaging 13.3 points per game and 7.4 rebounds per game. Frierson along with Kira Bonner of Northwestern State were named the Co-women's college basketball Players-of-the-Week by the Louisiana Sports Writer's Association on Wednesday. Frierson has played 106 minutes in the Ladies' last four games, shooting 37-58 from the field and 11-19 from the free throw line.
Southwestern dropped to 3-10 and 1-5 SCAC with the loss and have lost four in a row. The Ladies and Pirates will play again on Feb. 7 in Georgetown, Texas. The Ladies were behind 26-24 at halftime but scored the first seven points of the second half to take a 31-28 lead and wound up outscoring the Pirates, 21-14 in the quarter. Centenary took a 47-40 just 22 seconds into the fourth quarter on a Bre Frierson tip-in and held that lead for the next three minutes until Southwestern hit a three-point basket at the 6:15 mark.
The Pirates took a brief lead, 50-49, at the 4:14 mark but the Ladies quickly regained the lead over the next minute. Noel Pratts gave Southwestern the lead, 55-54, on a layup with 38 seconds remaining but after a timeout, junior guard Tacoya Allen (Killeen, Texas) was fouled and calmly made two free throws to give the Ladies a 56-55 lead. Centenary made four more clutch free throws down the stretch, including a pair by junior guard Darelzray Bellard (Mamou, La.) with 13 seconds remaining to give Centenary a 60-57 lead. Frierson made one of two at the line with just seconds left in the game for the final margin.
The Ladies shot 42.9 % (21-49) from the field for the game including a sizzling 61.5 % (8-13) in the third quarter. Southwestern shot 37.9 % for the game and turned the ball over 19 times. The Ladies outrebounded the Pirates by one, 38-37. Freshman forward Jazzmyn Jones (Normangee, Texas) scored 12 points in just 12 minutes, making four of her five shot attempts and was a perfect 4-4 from the free throw line and grabbed five rebounds. Jones has scored 25 points in the last two games after scoring 13 at Trinity on Saturday.
Junior guard Jennae Mayberry (Clovis, Calif.) continued her solid as she scored seven points and had three rebounds and three steals in 35 minutes. Mayberry scored a season-high 12 points last weekend against Schreiner. Senior forward Deunya Small (Shreveport) grabbed a season-best and game-high 16 rebounds, her fourth game this season with double digit rebounds. She had 15 rebounds against Schreiner. Pratts and teammate Cecily Woolfolk scored in double digits for the Pirates as Pratts had 15 and Woolfolk 13.
The Ladies welcome Texas Lutheran to the Gold Dome on Sunday at 2 p.m. and will be on the road next weekend to face St. Thomas on Saturday, Jan. 18 at 6 p.m. in Houston.
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