WICHITA FALLS – Texas A&M-Commerce used a 13-0 run at the end of the first quarter to take a nine-point lead it would never relinquish and defeated Midwestern State, 70-57, in front of 654 fans in Lone Star Conference action Thursday night.
Chania Wright led the Lions with 17 points while Princess Davis added 12 points. Alexis Bryant entered the contest averaging 5.5 points per game and scored a season high 11 points while grabbing nine rebounds against the Mustangs.
“I don’t think her average speaks to how talented she is,” Texas A&M-Commerce head coach Jason Burton said. “She is a Division I player. She was supposed to start at UTEP this year, she wanted to come close to home. She is such an unselfish player. I thought we did a better job of feeding the post and she took advantage.”
Hannah Reynolds had an impressive game for the Mustangs scoring 16 points, grabbing seven rebounds, blocking eight shots and dishing out five assists.
Burton talked about the challenge of facing Reynolds.
“She’s talented,” Burton said. “She’s a player that we recruited and she’s so long and she made it tough for us in the paint. When you let her get deep in the paint, she is very effective. She has a good mid-range game. She’s really expanded her game and she’s a lot more effective around the basket. Only a sophomore she has a lot of good basketball ahead of her.”
TRANSITION AND PAINT
While most of the team statistics in the game were close, Texas A&M-Commerce dominated in two key areas. The Lions outscored MSU Texas, 42-28, in the paint while also earning a huge 29-9 edge on fast break points.
“Our focus lately has been making sure we attack on the back end of a press,” Burton said. “A lot of our fast break points came when they pressed. I thought we did a good job of getting the ball to the middle or the sideline right away. We want to attack in transition.”
TOUGH ROAD AHEAD
Texas A&M-Commerce continues Lone Star Conference road play Saturday as they visit Lawton, Okla. to face a Cameron team that is always tough at home. The Lions return home next week as they face Tarleton State and Texas Woman’s on Daddy-Daughter Date Day.
MSU Texas will host rival Tarleton State on Saturday in D.L. Ligon Coliseum. The Mustangs continue their four-game conference homestand next week as they host UT Permian Basin next Thursday and Western New Mexico on Saturday.
Cory Hogue is Dave Campbell's Texas Basketball small college correspondent follow him on Twitter at @HoagieSports and be sure to visit his website (linked below) for more coverage of Division II and Division III collegiate athletics.