Despite trailing by double-digits within the first ten minutes, the MSU Mustangs raced to a 78-63 win over the Texas A&M-Kingsville Javelinas on Saturday night.
Midwestern State (20-5 overall, 11-4 LSC) had to withstand a furious start by the winless Javelinas (0-25 overall, 0-15 LSC) who nailed their first 7 baskets of the game. The No. 24 Mustangs used a strong bench effort to get back in the win column.
The Javelinas hot start would put the Mustangs in a 12 point hole just eight and a half minutes into the game. Led by seniors Janae McJunkins and Lisa Hampton, MSU would claw back to tie the game at 28 all with 5 minutes left in the first. McJunkins and Hampton combined for six made three pointers in the first frame.
Midwestern closed the half on a 9-3 run to take a 37-31 lead at the half. Hampton and McJunkins both tallied 9 points while Shatoia Gober marked 6 rebounds and 4 points.
Despite the blazing start, Kingsville managed to shoot just 44.4 percent from the field in the first half. MSU was close behind shooting 41.4 percent on 12-29 from the floor. The Mustangs won the battle of the glass, grabbing 21 boards to TAMUK's 17.
The long range duo of Hampton and McJunkins were not finished in the first. Both players knocked down another triple within the first 7 minutes of the second half. Janae McJunkins downtown jumper pushed the MSU lead to 47-37 at the 13:13 mark of the second half. The Mustang lead would bloom into as much as 16 on a deep three from Hampton with 7 minutes remaining in the game.
Andrea Carter had the most productive second half of any MSU player, tallying 7 points on 50 percent shooting. Carter finished the game with 11 points and 6 rebounds.
Midwestern State was in a sharing mood, dishing out 22 assists in the game. Senior guard Dianna Jones dropped 11 dimes on the night. The Javelinas could only manage 7 assists on 22 baskets for the night. That marks the fifth time that Dianna has achieved 11 assists in her career.
An cold shooting second half, coupled with tough MSU defense, forced Kingsville to just 32.3 percent shooting in the second half. The loss keeps the Javelinas winless on the season with an 0-25 record.
The Mustang bench was also very active in the game, outscoring TAMUK 39-12. Janae McJunkins finished with 12 points while Whitney Taylor drained 3 triples to notch 9 points.