The No. 8 Lubbock Christian University Lady Chaparrals fought off a sluggish start to improve to 10-0 on the season, as they earned a 61-53 victory Monday night at Sid Richardson Center over Texas Wesleyan University.
The Lady Chaps entered the contest ranked third in the NAIA with a 50.7% field goal percentage, but a 23-day layoff showed in the opening half of play. LCU trailed 29-21 at halftime and hit just seven field goals on 27 attempts (25.9%). Jordan Hampton and Brandi Raindl each connected on three-point field goals to open the Lady Chaps scoring on the first two shot attempts, but then the Lady Chaps missed their next five attempts and went the next 5:36 without a field goal.
LCU turned things around in the second half but not until the Lady Chaps missed their first five field goal attempts to start the half. They followed by successfully making 14 of their next 22 shots in the game. Jump starting the Lady Chaps in the second half was Severyn Smith, who had the opening two baskets and a steal to start a 13-4 run to cut the deficit to 35-34. Halfway through the second half, Brittany Hampton, Jordan Hampton and Sierra Lovorn combined for three consecutive three-pointers and the Lady Chaps took a 43-38 lead with 9:16 remaining. The trio of baskets led to a TWU timeout, and following the timeout, Ashley Coggins and Lovorn extended the streak of three-pointers to five and the 15-5 run provided LCU with a 49-43 lead with 6:39 to go. LCU's defense forced 12 steals in the second half and they helped the Lady Chaps cruise to the win late in the contest.
The LCU defense forced 21 turnovers, 13 steals (five by Lovorn) and held the Lady Rams to shooting 38.5% (20 of 52) in the game. Offensively, the Lady Chaps were led by Jordan Hampton's 18 points. She was a rebound shy of a double-double, leading the team with 9. Brittany Hampton also provided 14 points for LCU. The Lady Rams (2-10) were led by Sheleatha Simmons and Kim Gatlin. Simmons was 7-for-11 from the field for 15 points and Gatlin provided 13 points and four steals.
Lubbock Christian remains on the road Tuesday, as they head to Stephenville to face Tarleton State. Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m.