La. Tech spoils Cowgirls’ return home, Brannon scores game-high 16 points

Published 1:47 pm Thursday, December 23, 2021

By Jim Gazzolo

Special to the Daily News

Playing their lone December home game, the Cowgirls looked a bit lost Wednesday night in Burton Coliseum.

McNeese State closed out the 2021 portion of its season and said so long to Burton with a 74-57 loss at the hands of Louisiana Tech.

In a game slowed to a snail’s pace by a bevy of whistles and free throws, the Cowgirls (4-8) were looking to build momentum off their best game of the season last Saturday heading into the holiday break. Instead, the Lady Techsters sent them to their sixth loss in seven games.

The Cowgirls are off until after the new year and the Southland Conference’s preseason tournament in Katy, Texas, starting Jan.

3. That’s a long time to get over this one.

The teams combine for 50 fouls and 66 free throws. By the end of this long winter’s night few were in the holiday spirit.

The Lady Techsters ended 40-for-46 from the line.

Fresh off a five-game road trip McNeese started cold, turning the ball over on four of its first five possessions and missing nine of its first 10 shots. Tech (8-3) took advantage, jumping out to an 8-0 lead and never looked back.

Tech was led by Amaya Brannon, who finished with a game-high 16 points. She was one of three Techsters to end in double figures.

McNeese was led by Kaili Chamberlin and Cristina Gil, each of whom finished with 14 points.

The entire first quarter was a problem for the Cowgirls as the Lady Techsters poured the ball inside.

Kate Thompson and Brannon, a pair of freshmen forwards, combine to score 18 points in the first quarter to lead the Techsters to a 25-16 advantage after the opening 10 minutes.

The second quarter wasn’t much better as Tech took a 43-29 lead into the break after a whistle-filled half.

A total of 29 fouls were called in the opening 20 minutes with 42 free throws shot by the teams. Tech scored 24 of its points on 28 shots from the line.

The next time the Cowgirls will play in Lake Charles they are expected to be back in the Legacy Center, which is having the finishing touches put on it after it was destroyed by Hurricane Laura in August of 2020.

That’s when they take on Houston Baptist on Jan. 15 to open the SLC regular season.