Texas State drops two games during Hatter Classic

Texas State Women's Basketball

Texas State’s third loss of the season (6-3) came in frustrating fashion as it fell to Bethune-Cookman (7-3), 62-56, on Wednesday afternoon in the second game of the 30th Annual Hatter Classic inside the Edmunds Center in Deland, Florida.

The Bobcats were in an early hole as the Wildcats built an early 9-0 lead. Texas State was playing catchup all afternoon but they cut the lead down to seven at halftime, 28-21. The Bobcats got as close as six points before Bethune-Cookman ran away with the game following a 12-0 run late in the third quarter. 

“We did not match their intensity early in the game and it cost us,” head coach Zenarae Antoine said in a post game press conference. “There are plenty of things for us to learn from this game. We were not patient, we played rushed. We rushed some shots and had some bad turnovers. The good thing is those things can and will be fixed.”

Amid the 12-0 run, junior guard Toshua Leavitt picked up a technical foul where Wildcat Angel Golden took Advantage. Golden led Bethune-Cookman with game-high 21 points. Despite being down late, Texas State put up one more stand in the fourth quarter.

Senior forward Ti’Aira Pitts, who was scoreless until the fourth quarter, jump started a 9-0 run for Texas State. She capped off a 9-0 run with a 3-pointer just beyond the arc. The Bobcats cut the lead to single digits (8) with five minutes remaining in the game.

It was then that Bethune-Cookman’s Kanesha Battle hit a 3-pointer. But Pitts kept fighting, scoring the next three buckets for Texas State. The Bobcats were within five points of the lead but were unable to mount the comeback on the road. Texas State’s 21-10 run in the final 10 minutes of the game wasn’t enough to recover from the early game struggles.

The leading scorer for the Bobcats was sophomore guard Brooke Holle. She ended the night 5-of-9 shooting with 13 points. Holle also recorded six rebounds, two assist and two steals. Senior Erika May was the only other Bobcat to produce double-digit points with 11. May also had a team-high seven rebounds, two assists and two steals.

As of late, Texas State has been hot beyond the 3-point line. They had knocked down 39 3-point attempts in the previous three games. The Bobcats only hit 5-of-17 3-pointers on Wednesday. As a whole, they shot 35 percent from the floor - the lowest since the loss at TCU in November. 

Texas State falls to Stetson

The Bobcats dropped consecutive games for the first time this season in the final game of the Hatter Classic Tournament. Antoine gave praise to her team for the way they fought from behind but wants her team to avoid putting themselves in tough spots early. 

Thursday’s 61-54 loss puts the Bobcats at 7-4 with an 18-game conference schedule just around the corner. Holle’s performance, an 11.5 point average and five rebounds, in two games earned her a spot on the All-Tournament Team in the Hatter Classic.

This tournament will mark the final round of games before Texas State starts Sun Belt play against Appalachian State on Dec. 29. Two days later, the Bobcats will end the 2017 year with on the road against Coastal Carolina on Dec. 31.

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