Bobcats currently experiencing ascension in rollercoaster season

Sports Reporter

The best word to describe the Texas State women’s basketball season so far is sporadic, and as a result is best compared to a ride on a very unpredictable rollercoaster.

Texas State is still in a respectable position to compete for a Sun Belt Conference championship despite sitting at 7–11 on the season. The team has desperately struggled on the road, but has held its ground at home and is trying to find stability in a jarring season.

The team started the season with a dominating victory against Huston-Tillotson, 73–45, and the rollercoaster season, appropriately, began with anticipation as the Bobcats began with escalating aspirations. The first plunge occurred much sooner than anticipated as the team lost the next six games by an average of 18.3 points including a 54 point loss to Texas.

Texas State recovered from the plummet and began a second ascent after upsetting the preseason Sun Belt favorite Arkansas-Little Rock, 42–35, mustering more excitement as the team entered conference play. However, conference play proved to be nothing more than a sharp left and a series of corkscrews, as the Bobcats have gone 4–3 in seven games in the conference.

An advantageous aspect of the Bobcats’ erratic theme park journey has been the other standings in the  Sun Belt, which are in a constant flux with each passing game. There are realistically eight teams still in play for the conference lead, including Texas State. First place Arkansas State is only three games ahead of Louisiana-Monroe, who ranks seventh and sits near the bottom of the conference.

Texas State needs to find consistency when looking to close out the schedule’s winding ride. It is difficult to predict how exactly the rest of the season will go, but if the team is to make a late-season push heading into the conference tournament, it needs to use Saturday’s victory as a catalyst.

Senior center Ashley Ezeh has become the go-to scorer for the Bobcats, averaging 14.1 points per game, but has averaged 3.7 fouls per game since the Bobcats began conference play. Ezeh—the only Bobcat averaging double digit  points this season—needs to find a way to play less recklessly and avoid hindering the team’s offensive production with her out of the lineup .

Sophomore forward Erin Peoples and junior guard Meghan Braeuer have been bright spots in the offense recently. Peoples has averaged 11.7 points per game since the Bobcats entered conference play and has become the primary scorer while Ezeh is dealing with foul trouble. Braeuer has been lights out from 3-point range in conference games, shooting a remarkable 45.8 percent.

Texas State’s next game is Saturday against the second-place Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, and the Bobcats are coming off a thrilling 87-82 overtime victory over the Troy Trojans. The team needs to build off Peoples’ and Braeuer’s solid performances and continue to feed off of Ezeh’s constant production to get this roller coaster season back on track.