After dropping its past two Sun Belt Conference games, bouncing back Saturday against Arkansas State will be an uphill battle for the UT Arlington’s women.
Tipoff at College Park Center is set for 5 p.m.
Not only do the Red Wolves (9-5, 4-0 Sun Belt) come in as winners of their last four games, they also feature last season’s Sun Belt player of the year and current Sun Belt player of the week in junior guard Aundrea Gamble. The McKinney North graduate leads the Sun Belt in scoring (19.1 points per game) and is tied for second in assists (4.2).
“If we don’t show up and rebound the basketball better, we’re going to get it handed to us again,” UTA coach Krista Gerlich said after Thursday’s 63-51 home loss to Louisiana-Monroe. “Arkansas State is absolutely going to be a super tough competitor, but right now I feel like we’re shooting ourselves in the foot.”
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The Mavericks (8-5, 2-2) have seen better days on the offensive end of the floor. In the past nine games, the Mavericks have averaged only 55.8 points scored, and in their last two, both losses, the Mavs are shooting only 13-of-30 from the free throw line.
“[The coaching staff] can do a lot of things for them, but the one thing we can never do for them is shoot it,” Gerlich said. “Sun Belt play is tough, it’s physical, and right now we’ve got to get tougher.”
One bright spot lately has been the play of point guard LaShanda Green, who has made 9-of-15 from 3-point range in the last two games to keep the Mavs close in losses to Louisiana-Monroe and at Troy. The junior is scoring 16.5 points per game in the past two.
Arkansas State at UTA women
5 p.m. Saturday, College Park Center, Arlington
Records: Arkansas State 9-5, 4-0 Sun Belt; UTA 8-5, 2-2.