Saints defeat Gold Nuggets 56-51

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NEW ORLEANS — Natalia Trevino and Miranda Villegas led a third-quarter burst Saturday that carried Our Lady of the Lake to a 56-51 Red River Athletic Conference women’s basketball victory against Xavier University of Louisiana.

The Gold Nuggets (6-5, 1-1) trailed the entire second half and lost for the fifth time in seven games after a 4-0 start.

XULA trailed 30-28 after Abryhia Irons passed to O.C. Mbakop Ngassam for a basket at 7:29 of the third quarter, but Trevino and Villegas combined for all but two of the points in a 12-0 run that put the Saints (6-10, 3-0) in control.

Trevino’s basket with 7:23 remaining gave OLLU its largest lead, 50-35. XULA rallied and closed to 54-51 on Zaire McNeal’s 3-pointer with 19 seconds remaining, but Cormia Lewis clinched for the Saints with two free throws with 11 seconds remaining.

McNeal and Da’Jha Virgil scored eight points apiece for the Gold Nuggets. Irons had six points, nine rebounds and four assists.

Trevino led OLLU, producing 16 points, seven rebounds, two assists and three steals. Makayla White had 10 points and nine rebounds, and Villegas and Lewis scored eight points apiece.

OLLU made 14-of-16 free throws to XULA’s 9-of-11. The Saints had a 40-35 rebound advantage, 15-9 on the offensive end.

XULA’s Monday non-conference home game with Mobile was canceled because of illnesses on the Mobile team. Next for the Gold Nuggets will be a 5:30 p.m. Thursday RRAC game at Texas A&M-Texarkana. The next home game will start at 2 p.m. next Saturday against RRAC opponent Wiley.

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