Coastal's Second Half Rally at Texas State Falls Short
SAN MARCOS, Texas - DJ Williams tied her career scoring high of 29 points while collecting her fourth double-double of the season, and Jas Adams added an additional 23 points, but it was not enough as Texas State held off a surging Coastal Carolina team, 78-69, Thursday night at the Strahan Center.
Coastal (11-11, 5-6 SBC) scored 47 points in the second half in its attempt to erase the 24-point deficit it found itself in during the first half. The Chants made it a two-possession game with six minutes remaining, but were outscored by three points for the rest of regulation as the Bobcats fought to stay in front.
Texas State (15-7, 8-3 SBC), which made 14 3-pointers the last time these teams met in December, sunk 12 shots from beyond the arc as it held a double digit lead over Coastal for the majority of the contest. The Bobcats shot 55 percent from the field for the game, including 66 percent in both the first and third quarters.
Williams out-dueled the Sun Belt's leading scorer, Toshua Leavitt, who had 27 points for Texas State. CCU's sophomore guard tied for the team lead in rebounds with 10, and had team highs with four steals and three assists.
Naheria Hamilton also had 10 rebounds, and scored 11 points for her fifth double-double of the season. Adams scored 20 of her 23 points in the second half as the Chants tried to rally.
Leavitt made half of the Bobcats' 3-pointers and was 10-of-15 from the field overall. Ti'Aria Pitts scored 16 points while finishing 4-of-5 from beyond the arc, and Taeler Deer added 15 points and six assists.
The first quarter saw Texas State jump out to a 26-11 lead as it shot over 66 percent to open the game. Five of the Bobcats' 10 baskets in the first quarter were from 3-point range, with Ti'Aira Pitts sinking all three of her long-range attempts to lead the way. Williams accounted for six of the Chants' 11 first-quarter points.
Williams then scored all 11 of Coastal's points in the second quarter, bringing her halftime total to 17 points and seven rebounds. The second frame began with Williams scoring six unanswered points in the first two minutes, and ended with her scoring five unanswered in the final three minutes. The time in between included Texas State scoring 15 straight, including three more triples to bring its halftime total to eight 3-pointers.
Trailing 41-22 coming out of halftime, Coastal attempted to mount a second-half comeback. The Chants shot 58 percent from the field in the third quarter and controlled the first six minutes of the frame, outscoring the Bobcats 15-6 to cut the margin to 10 points at the media timeout. Coastal was unable to lower it to single digits, however, as Texas State scored six unanswered points out of the break and outscored the Chants 15-10 over the final four minutes.
Coastal made it a two-possession game after starting the fourth quarter on a 10-2 run, with Williams accounting for six of those points. Leavitt ended the streak with a 3-pointer, and hit her sixth of the game about a minute later. Deer made the Bobcats' final 3-pointer of the game with a minute-and-a-half remaining, and hit a pair of free throws in the final minute to close the scoring.
Coastal is back in action on Saturday when it heads to UTA for a 2 p.m. (CT) tip. The Chants defeated the Mavs at the HTC Center, 89-76, on Dec. 29 to open the Sun Belt schedule.