Aggie Women Notch First Ever Win In Ruston, Down LA Tech 66-56

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

RUSTON, LA - The New Mexico State women’s basketball team defeated the Louisiana Tech Lady Techsters for the first time in Ruston, La., in school history, 66-55, Thursday night. It was also the first win for the Aggies on the road in 61 days. The Aggies improve to 13-15 on the season and 6-11 in the WAC, while La Tech falls to 12-16 overall and 8-9 in conference play.

Stefanie Gilbreath led NM State with 20 points and five rebounds, while Kelsie Rozendaal added 14 and Danesia Williamson recorded 11 points. As a team, the Aggies shot 40 percent from the field, while holding La Tech to 31 percent from the field and 11 percent from beyond the 3-point arc.

NM State opened the second half on a 9-2 run to take a 38-19 lead with 17:05 to play in the game. The Aggies held on to a 15 point lead at 39-24 with 15:48 left in the game. Two quick baskets out of the first media timeout of the half, gave NM State a 20-point lead at 44-24 over the Lady Techsters.

La Tech went on a 6-0 run to cut the Aggie lead to 14 at 44:30 with 11:48 to go in the game. Gilbreath broke the run with her 20th point of the game, the 19th time this season she recorded 20 or more in a contest.

Gilbreath then committed her fourth foul of the game and was forced to the bench, as La Tech was on a 10-2 run, cutting the Aggies’ lead to 46-34 with 8:55 to go in the game. La Tech extended their run to 19-6, cutting the lead to 50-43, as Gilbreath fouled out with just over five minutes to play.

La Tech then made it a six point game with 3:45 left in the game at 53-47. Williamson then came back with a tough layup to give the Aggies an eight point lead with three minutes left in the game. Rozendaal then hit a 3-point bucket to take it back to a double-digit lead at 11 points with 1:53 to go in the contest.

The Aggies would hold off the La Tech push late in the game to win the game, 66-55.

An 0-for-6 start for the Aggies found them down 4-0 with 14:52 left in the first. NM State started the game cold from the field, including four turnovers in the first five minutes. Rozendaal got NM State on the board with a two made free throws at the 14:29 mark of the first half, as La Tech led 4-2. The Aggies then hit two more free throws to tie the game at 4 all.

Gilbreath hit a 3-pointer to give NM State a 7-4 lead as the Aggies were on a 7-0 run. Jasmine Rutledge added a fade away jumper to extend the lead to 9-4. A three point play by Rozendaal gave NM State a 12-6 lead with 10:59 left on the clock.

The Aggies continued to lead La tech at 15-6 with 7:21 to go in the first half. The Lady Techsters started the game 2-of-10 and missed their next 11 shots. NM State held La Tech without a field goal for over five minutes before hitting 1-of-2 two free throws as NM State continued to lead 17-7 with 5:46 to go in the half.

Gilbreath hit her second 3-pointer of the game to give Nm State a 20-7 lead, followed by a Camila Rosen jumper to extend the Aggie lead to 15 with 4:29 left in the half. The Lady Techsters cut into the Aggie lead with four straight points but continued to lead 26-13 with 2:20 remaining in the half.

The Aggies held on to a double-digit lead at the half, 29-17. Gilbreath led NM State with 13 points, going 5-of-10 from the field and 3-of-6 from beyond the arc. Rozendaal added five for the Aggies. Nm State forced 12 La Tech turnovers in the first half and held the Lady Techsters to just 19.4 percent shooting from the field.

The Aggies will be back in action against UT-Arlington Saturday, March 9 in Arlington, Texas. Game time is set for 6 p.m. (MT)