Georgia Southern women's basketball won its Sun Belt Conference opener for the first time since joining the league in 2014 with a 64-47 win over UL Monroe on Thursday evening at Hanner Fieldhouse.
The Eagles moved to 4-8 overall and start 1-0 in conference play for the first time since the 2009-10 campaign, when Georgia Southern won its first two SoCon contests. UL Monroe falls to 2-10 overall and 0-1 in Sun Belt play.
Georgia Southern led at halftime by three, 26-23, and extended that lead to 12 points at the end of the third quarter. The Warhawks cut that deficit to four, 48-44, three minutes into the fourth quarter, but the Eagles responded with a 7-0 run to clinch the contest.
Freshman Jaiden Hamliton led the Eagles on the night with 16 points, while senior Alexis Brown chipped in 15 points. ULM was paced by Amber Thompson's 18 points.
Eagle of the Game
Hamilton eclipsed her previous career high of 13 points by hitting 4-of-5 from three-point range and 6-of-7 from the field overall en route to her 16 points. She also added a pair of assists and a pair of rebounds on the evening.
UL Monroe scored the first four points of the second quarter to build 21-13 lead with just under six minutes to go until halftime. The Eagles held the Warhawks to just two points over the rest of the period to build its three-point halftime lead and improve to 4-0 this season when holding a lead at the break.
Stats of the Game
Georgia Southern had a 35-0 edge in bench points as seven different players came off the bench to score for the Eagles, led by Brown's 15 points on 6-of-9 shooting, inculding 3-of-6 from three-point range.
Anita Howard on the keys to the win against the Warhawks
""It was really about the consistency, as we gradually got better in each quarter. With us being out of Hanner for 14 days, it took us a while to get going. But once those threes started falling, and those fans started cheering, it just really made my job a lot easier. That's the best thing about home court advantage - you're able to settle, relax and have some fun. We had just about everyone score for us and that's key for us moving forward. "
Jaiden Hamilton on her season-high 16 points, including 4-of-5 from three-point range
"I think, once I hit my first shot, it kinda got me going. The past few games I've been missing a lot, so I guess this game made up for it."
Georgia Southern hosts Louisiana for a Sun Belt Conference contest on Saturday, January 4, at 2 p.m. at Hanner Fieldhouse.