Marcus Connolly / The Paisano
The UTSA women’s basketball team (4-3) led by as many as 12 points in their matchup against their I-35 rival, the Texas State Bobcats (3-3), but a late push by the Bobcats gave Texas State the upset victory, 57-53, at the Convocation Center. Senior guards Ashley Spaletta and Kamra King led the way for the Roadrunners with 13 points apiece and five and four rebounds, respectively.
The Roadrunners held the lead for the first half, scoring 10 points off Texas State turnovers and allowing no bench points for the Bobcats during the first half.
“We came out strong. We just couldn’t finish,” explained Spaletta, following the loss. “This one definitely hurt. It’s a rivalry game, and we wanted this win badly.”
The Roadrunners also dominated the second half leading for most of the half. The Runners’ shooting percentage improved in the second half from 36.7 to 39.3 — as did their free throw percentage from 42.9 to 66.7. Turnovers hindered the Roadrunners’ performance in the second half. UTSA committed eight turnovers, allowing Texas State to score 12 points. In the final 2:48, UTSA could not buy a shot. All four layups attempted by the Runners came up short while the Bobcats continued to make baskets. The Bobcats obtained the lead after Ayriel Anderson hit a pair of free throws for Texas State, giving them a 54-53 advantage with 21 seconds remaining. The Roadrunners were unable to catch up.
The Roadrunner defense played well throughout the game, recording six blocks and 13 steals. In the first half, the Runners held the Bobcats to a 29.4 shooting percentage from the field and hit just two of their seven 3-point attempts.
“The good thing about this (loss) is we have two weeks off to recuperate and get our legs back under us before we go to Lubbock,” said an optimistic Spaletta. “It was a tough loss, but we’ll be able to shake it off.”
The Roadrunners are not back in action until Friday, Dec. 19 as they travel to Lubbock to compete in the Athletes for Action Tournament. The Runners will start the tournament by taking on the Houston Cougars before facing Texas Tech and Nicholls later that weekend.