Lady Rebels rolled in final game of four-game road trip
UNLV finished its four-game road trip with a .500 record after falling in the trip’s finale in Stillwater, Oklahoma by double-digits.
The Lady Rebels dropped a road contest to the Oklahoma State Cowgirls, 87-62, from the Gallagher-Iba Arena Sunday, Dec. 18.
“This game hurts,” head coach Lindy La Rocque told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “It doesn’t feel good at all, but we can use that to our advantage moving forward if we take the right strides.”
Coming into the final game of this trip, UNLV had a week off since its last game.
Now the team sits at 9-2 overall this season, good for a first place tie with San Diego State in the Mountain West with one more non-conference schedule.
The team’s final non-conference game will take place Wednesday, Dec. 21 from the Cox Pavilion against Northern Arizona. Tip-off is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.
It took UNLV more than two and a half minutes to score its first points of the game while Oklahoma State got off to a 6-0 start.
In the first half, the Lady Rebels were held to 24% shooting from the field versus a 50% clip from the Cowgirls.
“Their best defense is their offense,” La Rocque said. “That was hard for us because when they score the ball [we] can’t play in transition.”
The struggles shooting carried beyond the arc as well as UNLV didn’t knock down its first three-pointer until the 4:14-mark of the second quarter with sophomore guard Kiara Jackson being responsible. That was the team’s lone three-pointer in 13 first half attempts.
Closing middle quarters proved to be an issue for the Lady Rebels as the team was held scoreless for the final 3:25 of the first half as well as being held without points for the last 1:45 of the third quarter.
During the second quarter drought, Oklahoma State used an 8-0 run to run its lead to 21 points, the largest of the first half. The lead grew to 30 points in the third quarter during the second scoreless drought.
“Oklahoma State’s a good team,” La Rocque told the LVRJ. “And we made them look really good too. Offensively, we didn’t have some shots fall and then the snowball started rolling downhill – the wrong way.”
UNLV’s offense was stymied early in more ways than one as the team picked up just two assists in the first half. That was quickly corrected in the early going of the third quarter when the team picked up two assists in the first minute and a half.
By the final buzzer, the Lady Rebels had racked up 12 assists on 24 made field goals for a 36% finish. For comparative purposes, the Cowgirls compiled 20 assists on 32 made shots, good for 55%.
Jackson and senior guard Essence Booker led the team in scoring with 10 points apiece. The former did so on 4-of-10 shooting while the latter made four of her 14 attempts.
Reigning MW Player of the Year, Desi-Rae Young, was held to single-digits for the second time this season. She was limited to eight points on 4-of-8 shooting to go along with eight rebounds in 32 minutes of action.
“They’re big,” La Rocque said. “They’re long, they’re quick and they made us rush our shots a little bit. We didn’t help ourselves, I don’t think.”
The team played without junior forward Nneka Obiazor for the third straight game as she recovers from a knee injury. In addition, the team played without sophomore forward Alyssa Brown (knee) for the first time this season.