Women’s Basketball: UNO battles Oklahoma State to fnal minute in season opener

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Brianna Ellis

STILLWATER, Okla. – The New Orleans Privateers women’s basketball team took an Oklahoma State Cowgirls squad that won 21 games last season to the wire in a 74-66 loss on Thursday afternoon in the season opener at Gallagher-Iba Arena.

The score was tied at 59-59 early in the fourth quarter and a three-pointer by Justice Ross with 1:39 left pulled the Privateers back within three points, trailing 69-66. The Cowgirls responded with a bucket on the next possession from Anna Gret Asi as they held off a game New Orleans squad that led for nearly nine minutes and had a lead as big as seven points in the second quarter.

Preseason First Team All-Southland guard, DeArica Pryor led the offense with 23 points. Pryor finished the game shooting 8-for-19 from the field, nailing seven free throws and pulling in four rebounds in 40 minutes. She was one of two New Orleans players to finish with double-figure points, with Zoe Cooper adding 10 points and leading the team with seven rebounds.

The Privateers also got 23 points from the bench, led by Alexis Calderon who scored nine points and added two steals in her Division I debut. The Privateers shot 42.1 percent from the field for the game.

At halftime, the sides were tied at 41-41 after a high-scoring second quarter that featured 52 combined points. New Orleans made 9-of-14 field goal attempts while Oklahoma State countered by going 11-of-17 from the field.

Early in the third quarter, a Cowgirls spurt pulled them to a nine-point lead, their largest of the game at the 6:40 mark of the third quarter. However, the Privateers locked down defensively for the rest of the quarter and held Oklahoma State to three points over the remaining 6:40 of the quarter.

New Orleans closed the third by going on a 12-3 run, getting six points from Pryor, four from Cooper and a layup from Brianna Ellis to go into the final quarter tied at 55.
Justice Ross added six points and two assists on the day. The Privateers forced 16 turnovers from Oklahoma State and had eight steals. New Orleans was also efficient from the free throw line as they connected on 12-of-14 attempts.

Oklahoma State had four in double figures led by Stailee Heard who had 15 points. Rylee Langermann added 14 points. Gret Asi and Chandler Prater had four assists each.

The Privateers remain in the state of Oklahoma when they face off against Tulsa on Friday at 11 a.m.

For 54 seasons, Privateer student-athletes have had the unique experience of wearing New Orleans across their chests. Like the city itself, our sports teams have been fueled by resiliency, grit, and the unquenchable desire to win. Our city also houses the nation’s biggest celebration each year. And much like a Mardi Gras parade krewe, we are tethered to our community through pride, tradition, a culture of acceptance, and finally our commitment to show that New Orleans is a world-class city to live, learn, play and work. We invite you to become more involved with the only University that truly represents New Orleans all day, every day. Join #NOLAsTeam, We Are Your Krewe!
Visit UNOPrivateers.com/signup to stay connected and follow us @UNOPrivateers on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

Fans are encouraged to follow @PrivateersWBB on Twitter/X, @PrivateersWBB on Instagram, and like /PrivateersWBB on Facebook.

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