Women's Basketball

Women's basketball enters final road trip of regular season

One road trip remains for the Texas State women’s basketball team before the postseason tournament in New Orleans.

Texas State’s first opponent of the weekend is Appalachian State, which sits seventh in the Sun Belt Conference with an 8-10 record.

The Bobcats defeated the Mountaineers by nine points in the last matchup. Maryah Sydnor, Mountaineers senior forward, was injured during the game.

“When you have an all-conference player out of the lineup mid-stream of the game, it’s hard for a team to adjust,” said Coach Zenarae Antoine. “I can’t lie. That obviously helps.”

Sydnor had 10 points in 17 minutes before exiting with 14:15 remaining in the second half. The Bobcats outscored Appalachian State by six points in the rest of the game.

Beyond the game: Raven Burns, junior guard

Raven Burns, junior guard, almost cried tears of joy during a photo shoot with her best friend, Regina Harris.

The feeling subsided when Burns held the camera lens over her eye.

It was time to get to work.

Burns got a new camera last Christmas from her father, Randy. Raven and Randy do not have much experience with photography, but they possess a flair for it.

“She’s always been kind of creative and decorative and all of that, so I think that’s something she would probably be good at,” Randy said.

Raven gets her photography instinct from her father. Randy took a photography class in high school, and his teacher told him he had a knack for it. Randy was not interested at first. He took the class because he thought it would be easy.

Get to know: Ayriel Anderson, junior guard

PL: Who is your favorite basketball player? Why?

AA: Allen Iverson. To me, he was a crafty guard who ran his team but also could put the team on his back. Everybody loved his crossover, and I liked how he could cross anybody over to get by them. And he can shoot.

PL: How long have you played basketball?

AA: Since I was really small—about 4 or 5 years old. I played in the Boys and Girls Club.

PL: What’s one of your hobbies off the court?

AA: I’m literally a basketball fanatic. All I watch is basketball, so whether it's on my phone, on the computer or the games that are on television—when I'm not playing basketball, I’m watching basketball.

Bobcats defeat Red Wolves 83-74 on senior day

Prior to Saturday's matchup, the Texas State women's basketball team was 0-4 against Arkansas State, including a semifinal loss in last year’s conference tournament.

The Bobcats' 83-74 win put an end to the losing streak.

“They (seniors) get to win their season on a big win at home," Coach Zenarae Antoine said. "You beat Arkansas State, who’s been a monkey on our back. Come on now that is huge. I’m so happy for our seniors.”

Antoine said this week the players made a list of four things they wanted to do against Arkansas State. She told them if they accomplished those four things they would win. 

Atop that list was giving 100 percent effort.

Second half run pushes Trojans past Bobcats

In Coach Zenarae Antoine’s eyes, quick shots plagued the Texas State women’s basketball team Thursday night.

Texas State’s missed shots created transition opportunities for Troy.

The Trojans took advantage of that and scored 12 transition points as a result.

Taking quick shots early on in the shot clock is not the Bobcats’ strategy offensively nor a recipe for success when you play a team that leads the conference in scoring.

Coach Zenarae Antoine said the team needs to correct its shooting efficiency. Texas State shot 30 percent in the game and 25 percent in the second half.

Women's basketball enters Troy matchup with confidence boost

Coach Zenarae Antoine views the matchup against the Troy Trojans like any other.

A win over Troy, the top-scoring offense in the Sun Belt Conference, would move the Texas State women’s basketball team within one game of the third seed. 

“If I had a crystal ball to see what the seedings would be like, and where we are gonna be, I think that would put more pressure on us,” Antoine said. “But even if I wanted to, I couldn't tell you what's going to happen because there is still so much left. It's tough to say who that other team is going to be.”

Antoine said despite the 64-41 loss to Louisiana-Lafayette Feb. 19, the team’s morale is high.

Notebook: Louisiana-Lafayette 64, Texas State 41

WHAT THE LOSS MEANS

The Texas State women’s basketball team fell to fourth place in the Sun Belt Conference behind the Troy Trojans. The next game against Troy carries huge conference playoff seeding implications. 

TURNING POINT: 17-3 Louisiana-Lafayette run to start the game

For the first 13 minutes of the game, the Bobcats could not score. Ericka May, freshman guard, finally made a jumper with 7:17 to go in the first half to make the score 17-5.

SPOTLIGHT PLAYER: Taeler Deer, freshman guard

Women's basketball drops to fourth place in conference after loss

Coach Zenarae Antoine’s biggest takeaway from the Texas State women's basketball teams' 64-41 loss to Louisiana-Lafayette was the lack of scoring in the first half.

Texas State shot 13 percent in the first half and 27 percent in the second half. However, they did shoot well from the free throw line, shooting 20-25.

“When you’re on the road, you have to start well,” Antoine said. “The start is critical to play well. The intent was there, but we just struggled scoring.”

Texas State was led by Erin Peoples, junior guard, and Ayriel Anderson, junior guard, who combined for 17 points. Taeler Deer, freshman guard, added eight points off the bench. 

Bobcats strive for consistency against Louisiana-Lafayette

Coach Zenarae Antoine referred to a team poster for inspiration heading into a rematch against Louisiana-Lafayette.

“Heart and hustle set us apart,” Antoine said. “That’s what is going to set apart either team.”

The Texas State women’s basketball team lost the previous meeting to Louisiana-Lafayette in double overtime. The Bobcats allowed a season-high 25 offensive rebounds in the 83-81 loss.

Antoine is stressing the fundamentals in practice—positioning and energy—in response to the rebounding disparity.

Antoine said Louisiana-Lafayette “played with more heart.”

Beyond the game: Taeler Deer, freshman guard

Taeler Deer is a legend in Channelview, Texas, a small, tight-knit suburb of Houston.

Deer’s number, 23, was retired in the high school gym. Her relationship with her coach, Kim Lockett, is about more than basketball.

In Lockett’s eyes, Deer is the daughter she never had.  

Their relationship grew over four years. Lockett was always available to her players but expected more from Deer.

Deer remembers an instance when Channelview was inbounding the ball. She was open in the corner, but Lockett told the other point guard to set the play up. Deer was upset, and Lockett benched her for the remaining two minutes of the game.

The team lost their seven-point lead and went into overtime.

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