The McMurry University women's basketball team battled strong early, but eventually was out-dueled by Heartland Conference leader Lubbock Christian University, 89-59, at the Rip Griffin Center.
The win upped the Lady Chaps record to 24-1 overall and a perfect 19-0 in the Heartland. McMurry fell to 3-22 on the year and 3-16 in the HC.
The Lady Chaps opened the game with a 10-0 run before McMurry was able to breech the scoreboard, thanks to a Keshia Collins layup at the 17:02 mark, to make it 10-2.
LCU enjoyed its largest advantage of the opening segment – 13 points – when it led 17-4 with 15:23 left in the period. But the War Hawks' defense tightened up and the offense began to find its range and, by the 11:48 media timeout, McM had clawed its way back to trail by just four, 17-13.
Undeterred, the league-leading Lady Chaps increased its cushion to 43-30 by the intermission. 20 of the War Hawks first half points came via its bench, while LCU converted 14 McM turnovers into 21 points in the opening segment.
LCU began to flex its muscle in the second half, extending its lead to 22 points (55-33) by the first media timeout of the second half at the 15:55 mark.
Collins finished the night with another stellar, all-around effort. The senior's stat line had a little something for fans of both offense and defense: 16 points, six rebounds, six assists, three blocked shots and eight steals. She hit 8-of-24 shots from the field.
Sierra Maykus added 11 points, going 4-of-6 from the field overall and 1-for-2 from beyond the arc. Freshman reserve post player Nicolette Erkman had a career-high 10 points and was an efficient 5-of-7 shooting in 23 minutes of court time (her longest stint of the year).
Sophomore forward Taylor Russell chipped in seven points and freshman Katy Boren – a graduate of nearby Lubbock Cooper High School – added five points and three rebounds.
Freshman guard Tessa Ramirez also passed off for six assists, tying Collins for team-high honors.
The War Hawks will close out the 2013-14 season Saturday at UT-Permian Basin. Tipoff is slated for 1 p.m. in Odessa.
Information provided by McMurry athletics department.