The UTRGV women’s basketball team lost 72-66 against the Tarleton Texans in its Western Athletic Conference (WAC) home opener Saturday at the UTRGV Fieldhouse in Edinburg.
The Vaqueros (0-7, 0-2 WAC) were led by junior Iyana Dorsey’s 25 points, including another perfect day at the free throw line going 12-for-12. Graduate student Ashton McCorry scored a career-high 12 points and had four rebounds as she played a career-high 29 minutes. Junior Arianna Sturdivant added 12 points on four three-pointers, shooting 50% from behind the arc. Junior Kade Hackerott recorded nine points, eight rebounds and three assists.
Tarleton (2-4, 1-1 WAC) was led by Faith Acker’s 20 points and eight rebounds. Teresa Da Silva and Elise Turrubiates eached scored 14 and Tyler Jackson also hit double-digits with 10 points. Turrubiates and Silva had eight and seven rebounds to aid the win.
The Vaqueros were hot from behind the arc to start the game – knocking down a trio of three-pointers from Hackerott, McCorry and Sturdivant in the first half of the opening quarter for a 13-10 lead. McCorry came off the bench in the first minute of the contest and brought a great spark for UTRGV, scoring seven quick points and collecting an assist. The Vaqueros held a 17-14 lead after the first quarter.
UTRGV’s second quarter was just as solid as the first as McCorry continued her career day. She drained a three-pointer in the final minute to grow her points to 12 and hit the career-best mark, putting the Vaqueros up 34-25 at the break. The Vaqueros held off a resilient Texans squad in the quarter, expanding their lead late despite being outrebounded. UTRGV notched three steals in the frame and went 6-for-6 at the charity stripe to stay in control.
Tarleton State cut the lead to four early in the third quarter, but good play by Hackerott and Sturdivant’s third triple of the game gave UTRGV some cushion up 42-35. The Texans came back strong and took a 43-42 lead with an 8-0 run with six points from Silva.
Senior Mele Kailahi made a pair of free throws to tie the contest at 44-44, but another Texans scoring run opened their lead to five points. Dorsey drilled a step-back three-pointer to make it one possession, but a late Tarleton State bucket put UTRGV behind 51-47 heading to the final quarter.
Tarleton State looked like it couldn’t miss to open the fourth, shooting 75% from the field to grow its lead to 58-49 and force a UTRGV timeout. The Texans continued to shoot lights-out to stay in control in the final frame despite a good effort from the Vaqueros late. UTRGV got within four, but the comeback fell short.
Next up for the Vaqueros will be a rivalry game against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi in the South Texas Showdown at 7 p.m. Tuesday in Corpus.