RUSTON, La. (Dec. 29) -- The University of Houston women's basketball team held off a late rally by Southeastern Louisiana to claim a 70-66 win in the consolation game of the State Farm Holiday Classic Tournament Tuesday night in Ruston, Louisiana. The Lady Cougars' second win of the season snapped a four-game losing streak heading into its Conference USA opener against South Florida Sunday afternoon in Hofheinz Pavilion.
Houston used a 24-10 run in the last 10 minutes of the first half to build a 43-27 lead at the intermission. Southeastern Louisiana then shot almost 62 percent from the floor in the second half and used a 31-19 run to cut the Lady Cougars' lead to 68-64 with 1:16 remaining in the contest. Freshman newcomer Sara Navarro however sank a pair of free throws with 42 seconds remaining to put UH back up by six and the Lady Cougars hung on for a 70-66 final.
UH senior guard Kokeesha Randle paced the Lady Cougars with a season-high 17 points. Newcomers Nakea Mitchell and Jessica Shanklin both added nine points each as Houston improved to 2-7 on the season. Southeastern Louisiana's Stacey Turner led all players with 21 points and she grabbed seven rebounds as SLU fell to 4-3.
The Lady Cougars will next be in action at home on Sunday, January 2, with its Conference USA opener. Houston will face National Division rival South Florida in Hofheinz Pavilion at 2:00 p.m.
Women's Basketball Linescore Houston Lady Cougars 43 27 -- 70 Southeastern Louisiana 27 39 -- 66 Scoring Leaders UH: Kokeesha Randle 17; Se LA: Stacey Turner Season Records Houston (2-7); SE Louisiana (4-3)