For last month, the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi women's basketball team saw flashes of brilliance in seven straight games on the road, but could never muster a complete game over four quarters. On Saturday's return to the American Bank Center, the Islanders (5-10, 1-3) beat Northwestern State in nearly every statistical category in a 60-51 victory.
Warding off multiple runs by the Lady Demons (7-8, 1-3) in the second half, the Blue and Green connected on a season-high 48.8-percent (20-of-41) of its shots from the field, while assisting on 55-percent (11) of its made baskets.
"I thought we maintained our composure," head coach Royce Chadwick said. "We did a good job of staying in our game plan and executing the plays we needed to make on both ends of the court."
Brittany Mbamalu matched her season high with five makes from downtown to lead the Blue and Green with 15 points. Emma Young put together one her best performances of her career, recording 12 points, four assists, four rebounds and a pair of steals.
After struggling through the first two games of Southland Conference play, allowing 12 3-pointers per outing, the Islanders continued to strong perimeter defense started at Stephen F. Austin, as the Lady Demons were held to just 21-percent from downtown.
The Islanders led for 35:03 of Saturday's game, the fourth longest span of the year. Young connected on her first 3-pointer of the day at the 5:04 mark of the first quarter to give the Islanders a one-point lead, an advantage the team would never relinquish.
HOLDING OFF THE RUN
The Lady Demons never allowed the Blue and Green to extend the lead to more than 11, before mounting an 8-0 run with six minutes to play, eventually cutting it to two.
Late second-half surges by opponents have been the undoing of the Islanders during their seven-game losing skid. On Saturday night, A&M-Corpus Christi put its collective foot down to snap the streak.
Young found Uri Jolivette down low to stop the streak, before Mbamalu gave the Islanders some insurance with her fifth 3-pointer at the 2:48 mark. The basket would be the last for the Blue and Green. Erin Willis was clutch, going 4-for-4 at the charity stripe, as the Islanders went 9-of-12 from the line in the final two minutes.