Hattiesburg, Miss. -- The Southern Miss Women's Basketball team (15-9, 7-5) slipped past the UTSA (11-11, 7-4) 74-71 Thursday evening.
Southern Miss controlled the contest for much of the game, being up by as many as 16, and led for over 35 minutes. The Roadrunners tied the contest up at 65 with 2:01 left in the fourth quarter. Freshman Shonte Hailes would break the tie on a three and the battle was on.
The two teams would trade baskets and free throws until 21 ticks remained on the clock. On the next Southern Miss possession Brittanny Dinkins found Keri Jewett-Giles off of a screen for a baseline jumper to give the Lady Eagles a 72-71 advantage.
"[I was] just making a play at the last second, trying to come up big for my team," Jewett-Giles said, "[Dinkins] didn't have [the look] and I ended up calling her name. At the last minute and she got it to me and I ended up making the shot."
The Roadrunners called timeout to talk things over and set up their final possession.
Jayla King snagged the UTSA inbounds and pushed it to Dinkins to seal the Lady Eagles 74-71 victory.
"I had just missed my free throws so I knew I had to come up with something, you know, redeem myself on the defensive end," King said. "In my mind I was like, `I'm going to get this steal.' My teammates had everyone locked up so I know they were going to throw it to [who I was guarding]. Someone else tipped it and it ended up falling in my hands. I threw it to Keri and Keri threw it to Dinkins."
The Lady Eagles sweep of the Roadrunners is the second in program history.
"Fortunately enough for us, [UTSA] struggled from the free throw line, just like we did, but Keri [Jewett-Giles] came up with some huge stops and Jayla [King] was absolutely incredible on the boards," said assistant head coach Kiley Hill. "I think I played [Jayla King] almost 40 minutes. She kept looking at me saying, `I'm dying.' I said, `Keep playing and you'll die later.' It was an opportunity for us to keep going and move forward. I thought it was a great team effort. We were able to attack the rim early and we made buckets."
King notched the fifth double-double of her career with 11 points and just as many rebounds. King led the team in rebounds, the eighteenth time she has done so in her career. Dinkins led the Lady Eagles in scoring, the twenty-seventh time of her career, with 16 points. Dinkins has now scored at least 16 points in 11 straight contests. Hailes chipped in 15 points and Lashyra Cotton tallied 14.
Every Lady Eagle registered at least one board against the Roadrunners
Southern Miss will see UTEP next on Saturday Feb. 11 at 4:00 p.m. Starting 30 minutes before tip, Lady Eagle fans can hear Josh West on the radio broadcast for the game on WFOR 1400 AM.
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