A&M-Commerce never trailed for the second straight game to secure the 74-69 win over Tarleton State on Senior Night at The Field House. With the win the Lions clinch the seventh seed in the Lone Star Conference Tournament next week and get a rematch versus the TexAnns.
A&M-Commerce (7-19, 6-10 Lone Star Conference) held a 17-8 advantage in points off turnovers and a 24-18 lead in points off the bench. Tarleton State (19-7, 10-6 LSC) held a plus-10 advantage inside but shot just 2-of-10 from behind the arc.
A&M-Commerce had five players in double figures, led by Aubree Butts and Breanna Harris with 13 each. La'Tisha Hearne, Devin Oliver and Ashlee Johnson had 10 each. Johnson and Oliver each had four assists as well. Hearne added 13 rebounds to give her a double-double for the second time this season.
Devin Oliver banked in a three-pointer to get the Lions on the board and the Lions would not let the TexAnns tie or take the lead for the rest of the night. A&M-Commerce pushed the lead to 11 inside of five minutes, 17-6, after a layup from Harris.
Tarleton State would eventually cut the to lead to three at the 9:35 mark after a jumper from Travanti Downs. The Lions then extended the lead back to double digits after a layup from Shanekqua Bibbs with 6:06 to play in the half. A&M-Commerce maintained the double-digit lead heading into the break.
Out of the halftime break the Lions extended the lead to 16, 51-35 after a Hearne layup with an assist from Butts. The Lions held their largest lead of the game at 17 after two free throws from Butts with 7:59 to play.
With 3:40 to play the Lions held a seven point lead but the TexAnns trimmed it to three with 21 seconds left after a Kathy Thomas three-pointer. Johnson was fouled on the inbounds and converted both free throws to make it a two-possession game and seel the win for the Lions.
A&M-Commerce will try to repeat last season's success as the seven seed in the LSC Tournament when they knocked off Abilene Christian.