McNeese women head to Beaumont

Published 2:30 pm Wednesday, February 21, 2024

With all hope of the postseason gone, the Cowgirls look to find a way to gain some momentum heading down the stretch.

Tonight they head to Beaumont, Texas, to take on rival Lamar with tipoff set for 7 p.m.

It will be a battle of the Southland Conference leaders against last-place McNeese State, which is still searching for its first win against a Division I foe.

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Lamar, 18-5, 1-2, has a one-game lead over Southeastern in the race for first place in the regular season. McNeese is 4-22, 0-13, and has lost 15 straight games.

The Cardinals have used an eight-game winning streak to vault into first place ahead of Southeastern.

Talking about streaks, the Cowgirls have lost 14 straight against Lamar dating back to March 11, 2016, during the SLC Tournament in Katy, Texas.

Despite the tough times over the last decade against the Cardinals, McNeese still leads the series overall 41-38. That includes a 20-18 record in Beaumont.

“We have a lot of those types of streaks we have to break down the walls too,” said McNeese head coach Lynn Kennedy. “We have not gotten the outcomes on the court, but we have got to continue trying to improve.

”Lamar won the first meeting between the teams last month in Lake Charles, 82-50.

Akasha Davis led the way for the Cardinals with 20 points and 14 rebounds, dominating the inside. NJ Weems added 11 points.

Davis is fourth in the conference in scoring at 14.2 a game. Her teammate, Sabria Dean, is third at 14.5.

“They are a very good, balanced team,” said Kennedy. “We have to be physical and keep them off the offensive rebounds.”

Lamar had 19 offensive boards in the first matchup.

“We have to see what we can do against the best team in our conference,” said Kennedy. “It still has to be about us.”

McNeese will counter with Emalia Tenbrock, who had 25 in the first meeting. She is tied for the league lead in the Southland with a 15-point average.

Junior Mireia Yespes is the only other Cowgirl in double figures at 10.6.

The Cowgirls will be back home on Saturday for a rematch with Incarnate Word starting at 1 p.m. in the Legacy Center.

“We still have high spirits, energy and are competitive,” said Kennedy. “They always come in and are ready to work.”