Nicholls rebounds, hands SLU first Southland loss

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THIBODAUX, La. – The Nicholls State University women’s basketball team returned to form following a setback on the road, as the Colonels took down rival Southeastern Louisiana for the sixth consecutive time, defeating the Lady Lions,76-63, Saturday afternoon at Stopher Gymnasium.

The Colonels (3-7, 2-1 SLC) nearly matched their points total from Wednesday’s loss at Lamar with 38 in the first half to head into the break with a two-point advantage. Nicholls maintained its lead and then used an 11-0 run in the fourth to put the game away, going up 68-54 with five minutes remaining. The lead stayed in double figures the rest of the game as Nicholls improved to 3-1 at home.

Sophomore Chelsea Cain posted her third double-double in the last four outings, scoring a game-high 26 points to go along with 12 rebounds. She was 10 of 15 from the field and 6-for-6 at the free throw line, while also adding three steals and two assists.

She was joined in double figures by fellow sophomore Adrian Mann, who came off the bench for 19 points. Mann connected on 3 of 6 from 3-point range and was a point shy of matching her career-high, set in the 2019 regular-season finale against SLU (3-3, 2-1 SLC). Mann helped fuel the decisive late run with a 3-pointer that gave Nicholls a double-digit lead.

The first quarter saw five lead changes, with Anna McKendree hitting a 3-pointer late as Nicholls led 19-17. Bryanna Washington, who totaled 11 points and three assists, got the Colonels going early with two field goals right out the gate.

Nicholls never trailed in the second and third quarters but could not push its advantage to more than nine points. The Colonels used a Cain steal and layup to grab a 55-46 lead heading into the fourth.

SLU made it interesting early in the fourth, pulling within three at 57-54. Breonca Ducksworth, who had 13 points and was one of four Lady Lions in double figures, scored a basket-and-one to spark a 6-0 run.

But Nicholls answered in a big way, scoring 11 consecutive to stretch the lead to double figures for the first time. Along with Mann’s 3-pointer, Nicholls got a pair of buckets from Cain, and one each from Chyna Allen (7 points) and McKendree (5 points).

Nicholls shot 49 percent for the game and made a season-best 33.3 percent from 3-point range (5-15). The Colonel defense held SLU to 5 of 19 from behind the arc.

UP NEXT
The Colonels will host Northwestern State at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, January 13 in Stopher Gym. The Lady Demons are searching for their first victory after falling to McNeese on Saturday.

Southeastern will conclude its three-game Southland road swing next Saturday, traveling to Abilene Christian for a 1 p.m. Southland contest. The game will be televised on ESPN+.

Southeastern Louisiana 63 (3-3, 2-1 SLC)
Carrier 6-13 0-0 14, Cunningham 1-2 1-2 3, Brown 3-6 0-0 6, Ducksworth 5-8 3-5 13, Giaratano 1-7 2-2 4, Huderson 4-7 1-1 10, Harvey 3-9 3-4 11, Bradford 0-2 0-0 0, Langford 1-2 0-0 2. Totals 24-56 10-14 63.
Nicholls 76 (3-7, 2-1 SLC)
Cain 10-15 6-6 26, Bolozova 0-1 0-0 0, Washington 4-8 3-3 11, McKay 2-3 2-2 6, Allen 3-10 0-0 7, Mann 7-13 2-4 19, McKendree 2-5 0-0 5, Womack 0-2 0-0 0, Manley 0-0 2-2 2. Totals 28-57 15-17 76.
End of 1st Quarter – NICH 19, SLU 17. Halftime – NICH 38, SLU 36. End of 3rd Quarter – NICH 55, SLU 46. 3-point goals – SLU 5-19 (Carrier 2-5, Harvey 2-5, Huderson 1-3, Giaratano 0-3, Brown 0-1, Langford 0-1), NICH 5-15 (Mann 3-6, Allen 1-3, McKendree 1-2, Womack 0-2, Washington 0-1, McKay 0-1). Technical Fouls – None. Fouled Out – None. Rebounds – SLU 30 (Giaratano, Huderson 5), NICH 34 (Cain 12). Assists – SLU 9 (Brown 4), NICH 12 (Washington, McKay 3). Total Fouls – SLU 16, NICH 12. A – 67.

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