The Longhorns opened their season on cruise control with an easy 92-60 victory over the Mississippi Valley State University Devillettes Friday night.
The Longhorns barely even gave the game a chance to start before they ended it. They jumped out to a 33-7 lead in the first nine minutes of the game and never looked back.
“I think for our first game, overall I was pleased,” said head coach Gail Goestenkors. “I thought the energy was good, and I thought the way we started both halves was very good.”
The Longhorns have their veteran players to thanks for the victory. Returners Kathleen Nash, Yvonne Anderson, Ashley Gayle and Ashleigh Fontenette combined for 66 points. Freshman Chassidy Fussell also had standout game, adding 12 points to the mix.
Anderson had a particularly memorable day posting a career-high 18 points and played 26 minutes, while Nash added 19 points of her own.
Anderson credits the leadership role she and her fellow veterans took on that helped Texas win.
“A lot of the freshmen come in a little wild and the upperclassmen can come in and say, ‘Calm down, we have this, just execute and do what we know how to do,’” Anderson said.
Despite the easy victory, Goestenkors was quick to note Texas’ many imperfections. Texas’ bench contributed to numerous turnovers, and they allowed the Devillettes to go on small runs while the Texas starters rode the bench.
“We need to work on the way we finish both halves. I think the bench has to feel like they are starting,” Goestenkors said. “We had such a big lead when they [the bench] did go in they weren’t as focused as they needed to be.”
Another troubling statistic in an otheriwise well played game was Texas’ turnover woes. They turned the ball over 24 times But as poorly as they held on to the ball, Texas played an equally as effective thief, scoring 38 points off of 26 Devilette turnovers.
Texas will look to correct their mistakes before taking on Northwestern State next Tuesday at the Frank Erwin Center.