Lady Chaps hold off Angelo State in LSC opener


Ashton Duncan took advantage of her first career start and notched a career-high 24 points to help No.1 Lubbock Christian University avoid a monstrous Angelo State comeback attempt and claim a 75-64 victory in their Lone Star Conference opener Saturday afternoon inside Junell Center.

Duncan, a junior appearing in her 54th career game with the Lady Chaps, nailed eight of her first nine shot attempts during the game, including her first five field goal attempts. She posted 13 points in the first half off 5-of-6 shooting and was key in the Lady Chaps exploding offensively early. After missing their first four shot attempts, Duncan hit a three-pointer, which was the first of an eventual five consecutive Lady Chap successful field goal attempts over a stretch in which LCU was 9-of-11 from the field (bookended by Duncan three-pointers) to give them a 23-15 lead. LCU had a 16-0 scoring run, which included LCU closing the first quarter on a 7-0 run for a 23-15 lead before opening the second quarter on a 9-0 run for a 32-15 advantage. Duncan had 10 of the 16 points during the run, while ASU missed nine consecutive field goal attempts over nearly a seven-minute stretch. Along with Duncan's production, the Lady Chaps also received 12 points from Maddi Chitsey in the half, which helped LCU take a 42-29 lead into the half.

In the second half, the hot-hand for Duncan continued. She made four consecutive LCU field goals (nine points), as LCU went on a 10-0 run and built their lead to 56-33 with four minutes into the third quarter. With the 23-point advantage, it was not time to relax for the Lady Chaps, who had to put up with a surge by the Belles. Angelo State responded with three-pointers from Lana Marov and Sawyer Lloyd, which led to a 16-2 run to close the third quarter with LCU's lead cut to 58-49.

The Belles chipped away at the LCU lead and were able to trim the lead to 68-63 on a three-point play by De'anira Moore with 5:29 remaining. LCU erased any further meltdown thoughts with a 5-0 run to push the lead back to double figures (73-63).

LCU took advantage of turnovers early in the game, forcing the Belles into 11 turnovers and outscoring ASU 13-2 in points-off-turnovers. They finished the game with a 22-14 advantage in points off turnovers and a 21-14 turnover advantage.

The Lady Chaps shot 47.5% (29/61) from the field and knocked down nine three-pointers. They held ASU to 33.9% (21/62) shooting from the field. Duncan led all scorers with 24 points off 10-of-16 shooting, with a 4-of-9 mark from outside. Allie Schulte, who posted 13 points in the second half, finished with 18 points off 8-of-16 shooting.

ASU was led by Moore, who had 21 points. Catara Samuel (15), Marov (14) and Lloyd (12) also finished in double figures for the Belles, who fell to 2-2 overall and 0-1 in conference. Lloyd (2-of-6) and Marov (4-of-7) combined to go 6-of-13 from long range, while the rest of the Belles were 1-of-12 from three-point range.

The win for the Lady Chaps marked their seventh consecutive win over the Belles in the all-time series (LCU is 11-3 all-time against ASU) and they improved to 5-1 all-time in San Angelo in the series. LCU was playing in their first game in San Angelo since Nov. 24, 2014.

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