KINGSVILLE, TEXAS – After losing to Lone Star Conference South Division rival Abilene Christian on Tuesday night in Abilene, the Texas A&M-Kingsville women’s basketball team needed a win on Saturday to keep pace in the conference race. Behind the outstanding play of seniors Kayla Naylor (Corpus Christi/Calallen HS) and Reagan Sutton (Portland/Pusch Ridge Christian HS), the Javelinas came away with an 81-68 win at Kingsville Hampton Inn Court. (box score)
The first half of the game was a rollercoaster ride for both teams. The Javelinas (17-5, 5-2) jumped out to a quick 10-4 lead thanks to five points from Angela Franklin (Vacaville, CA/Vanden HS).
The Wildcats (14-8, 4-3) responded with a 13-0 run that was capped by back-to-back buckets by Kat Kundmueller. Kundmueller, known for her playmaking abilities, made herself a scoring threat in the game and went for 14 points.
The Hoggies clawed their way back into the game thanks to a solid offense and foul problems for the Wildcats. The Hoggies scored 27 points in the final 12 minutes of the half while twins Jody and Jamie Meyer sat on the bench for ACU with two fouls apiece. Jamie leads the LSC in scoring at nearly 20 points per game while Jody averages 15 points and leads the league in rebounding. The Javs went into halftime with a 37-32 lead.
In the second half, the Javelinas never gave up the lead although Wildcats tied the score on two occasions. The second time it was Kelsey Darby-Holson who hit a foul line jumper to cap a 7-0 run for the visitors and made it 60-60 with 7:45 remaining. Over the last few games the Javelinas have struggled in similar situations, but it was all different on Saturday.
Naylor got the team jump started by hitting a 15-footer and knocking down a three-pointer on the next possession. The Hogs took their cue from Naylor and went on a 16-2 run to make it 76-62 with 3:45 to play. The Javelinas slowed down the game over those final minutes and grabbed the victory.
The Javelinas had five players score in double figures. Naylor led the team with 18 points, tying a career high, and six assists while Sutton added a career high 14 points and eight boards. Franklin, Dyana Bullinger (Spring/Klein HS) and Felicia Soza (Beeville/A.C. Jones HS) each had 11 points apiece.
The Hoggies shot 45.6 percent from the field, made 6-of-16 three-point attempts and were 23-for-30 at the foul line. They turned the ball over 14 times and forced the Wildcats into 17 turnovers. The Wildcats grabbed three more rebounds than the Hoggies.
The Wildcats were led by Jamie Meyer’s 16 points and seven rebounds on 8-of-12 shooting from the floor. Kundmueller added seven rebounds and eight assists in addition to her 14 points. Courtney Laing finished with 15 points, six rebounds and three assists. ACU shot 41.8 percent from the field, made 4-of-14 three-point attempts and were 8-for-12 at the foul line.
The Javelinas are back in action on Wednesday night at LSC South rival Angelo State at 6 o’clock.