UTSA women’s basketball drops opening two games of the season


Dalton Hartmann

Ceyenne Mass drives to the hoop during UTSA’s season opener against Stephen F. Austin on Tuesday night. Mass recorded five points and four rebounds in the loss.

Ryder Martin, Sports Editor

The UTSA Roadrunners (0-2) tipped off their season last week with two games on Tuesday, Nov. 9, and Saturday, Nov. 13. On Tuesday, the ‘Runners squared off against the Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks (2-0) to open the season and fell by a final score of 50-77. On Saturday, the ‘Runners were met with a similar result against the Abilene Christian Wildcats, losing by a final score of 53-72. 

Starting with Tuesday’s game, the ‘Runners started out fairly even with the Lumberjacks, but as the first quarter wore on things began to get away from them. The Lumberjacks used a 13-0 run late in the quarter to take a 22-9 lead early. The second quarter was much more competitive, however, as the two teams traded buckets. SFA led by as much as 20 late in the quarter, but UTSA played well down the stretch and a pair of LaPraisjah Johnson free throws just before halftime cut the lead down to 16. 

It was much the same story in the third quarter as a free throw by Johnson cut the lead down to 13 early in the third, but the Lumberjacks responded. Riding strong shooting, they stretched their lead back out and took their biggest lead of the game to end the third 57-36. In the fourth, SFA controlled the quarter throughout, never giving UTSA an opening to mount a comeback. Eventually, a pair of Leslie Hunter free throws for UTSA finished off the scoring in the game and it ended 50-77. 

Johnson led the ‘Runners in scoring with 13 points and demonstrated the style of basketball new head coach Karen Aston seems interested in playing — a fast aggressive mindset that looks to get to the basket and draw contact. The ‘Runners attempted only eight three-pointers in the game and shot 30.6% overall from the field.

On Saturday against the Wildcats, it was the same story. In the first quarter, the two teams went back and forth and were tied at 11, but a 5-0 run for Abilene Christian saw them take the lead to end the first quarter. In the second quarter, the run continued and by midway through the quarter, the lead had grown to 13 before the bleeding stopped. The Wildcats controlled the quarter from then on and headed into halftime with a 18-35 lead. 

The third quarter was similarly rough for UTSA. The ‘Runners managed to cut the lead to 15 midway through the third, but the Wildcats promptly slammed the door shut on a comeback, going on a 12-0 run to close out the quarter and take a 26-53 lead into the fourth. In the fourth, UTSA put together their best quarter of the season. The ‘Runners put up 27 points in the fourth and closed the gap to 19 to end the game 53-72. 

Johnson once again led the ‘Runners in scoring with 13 points. Queen Ulabo recorded a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds. 

UTSA will next be in action on Thursday, Nov. 18, at home against Texas State. Tip off is scheduled for 7 p.m. and the game will also be available on CUSA.tv.