Cowgirls dominate Ecclecia in 108-39 win

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LAKE CHARLES — McNeese women’s basketball began their new year with a dominating 108-39 win over Ecclesia College here Sunday in a game that was added to the schedule following the cancellation of the Southland Conference Women’s Tip-Off event.

The game marked the first game played for the Cowgirls since its 74-57 home loss to Louisiana Tech on Dec. 22, but the Cowgirls didn’t look like they haven’t played against competition, starting the quarter off with a school record 41 points to take the early lead 41-9. In fact, the Cowgirls’ defense held Ecclesia to below 15 points in each quarter.

“It was important to have this came since we haven’t played in almost three weeks,” said head coach Lynn Kennedy. “I love the way we started the game and we had good intensity throughout the game. I thought our defensive intensity and rebounding really showed in the first quarter and that set the tone for the rest of the game.”

All but one Cowgirl scored, and four Cowgirls ended the game in double figures. Kyla Hamilton came off the bench to score a season 24 points, one shy of tying her career high. Hamilton ended the game nearly perfect from the field (10 of 11) including 3 of 4 from three-point range.

Freshman Taylor Wilkins also came off the bench to record her first career double double with a career high 19 points and a career high 10 rebounds. Wilkins was 8 of 11 from the field and 3 of 4 from behind the arc.

Also scoring in double figures was Mireia Yespes who also came off the bench to score a career high 12 points and Clara Rosini chipped in with 10 points, also a career high.

The Cowgirls also ended the game dishing out a school record 35 assists with Hamilton leading the way with a season high seven.

As a team, McNeese shot 58.1 percent (43-74) from the field, 51.9 percent (14-27) from three-point range, and 66.7 percent (8-12) from the free throw line while scoring 56 of their points in the paint and 44 points off 27 Ecclesia turnovers. The Cowgirls also double up the Royals in the rebound column (48-24) with 35 of McNeese’s boards coming on defense.

“We were in the right positions today and that was something we worked on last week. I thought we moved really well without the ball so when we did get into an attack, we had a wide-open kick out for a three.”

After an early 5-5 tie, McNeese went on a 36-2 run to lead 41-9 after the first quarter before leading 68-20 at the half.

McNeese will return to action this Saturday, Jan. 15 to host Houston Baptist in its Southland Conference opener. The game will mark the first game back in its newly renamed campus facility (Legacy Center) since its last game played (March 4, 2020) in what was then called the H&HP Complex.

– McNeese scored a school record 41 points in the first quarter
– McNeese dished out a school record 35 assists
– All but one Cowgirls who suited up scored
– Four players scored in double figures
– Three of the four players that scored in double figures came off the bench to score their career high’s
– Taylor Wilkins recorded her first career double double (19 pts., 10 reb.)
– Kyla Hamilton led all players with 24 pts., one shy of tying her career high. Hamilton also dished out a season high seven assists and was credited with a season high 5 steals.
– It’s the sixth game this season in which the Cowgirls made 10 or more three-pointers (14) and it’s the second most made this season.

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