LIVINGSTON, Ala. – The top defense in the Gulf South Conference came up big again Saturday, allowing West Alabama to sneak by Alabama Huntsville, 55-54, in women’s basketball at Pruitt Hall Gym.
Allowing just 54.3 points per game coming into Saturday’s game, West Alabama limited the Lady Chargers to just 29 percent shooting (17-for-57) on the way to splitting the weekend series with UAH. Bria Dent iced the winner cake for the Tigers by stealing the UAH inbounds pass with 3.7 seconds left to play to preserve the victory.
“The big thing is we didn’t quit and I really like that about this team,” UWA head coach Rusty Cram said. “I am really proud how we kept our poise at the end of the game.”
West Alabama improved to 3-1 and continues a six-game homestand Friday by hosting Union. UAH dropped to 3-3 and is host to Delta State Friday in the first of four straight games against the Lady Statesmen.
West Alabama got off to a slow start for the second consecutive day against the Lady Chargers, allowing UAH to convert 4-of-8 from behind the three-point line while recording six steals in the first quarter on the way to a 17-11 lead after 10 minutes.
For a second consecutive day against UAH the Tigers rallied in the second quarter to take a 29-27 lead at the half. UWA picked up the pace while holding the Lady Chargers scoreless for just over three minutes as time evaporated into halftime.
The Lady Chargers took a 43-28 lead after three quarters, thanks in part to forcing 11 Tiger turnovers in the period. UWA finished with 22 turnovers in a game that was tied nine times and had five lead changes.
“There were a lot of bright spots in this game, but we need to learn to enjoy prosperity,” Cram said. “Still, we are always pleased to get a “W”. We are definitely getting better every time we play.”
West Alabama hit 6-of-11 from the floor in the fourth quarter while limiting the Lady Chargers to just 3-of-12 , including a 0-for-9 stretch at one point.
Tazsa Garrett-Hammett was the only UWA player to score in double figures, finishing with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Garrett-Hammett also had four assists and three steals. Dent led all rebounders with 16.
“Tazsa is focused on becoming that player we all know she can be,” Cram said. “She has goals that she wants to accomplish and she is playing like it.”
Alexis Woods notched a double-double for UAH, scoring 19 points and grabbing 15 boards. Selena Pruitt chipped I 13 points and Sloan Mann had 11.