(New Orleans, La.) Alisha Rayborn’s layup with 1.3 seconds remaining gave Belhaven University a 42-40 conference women’s basketball victory over Loyola University New Orleans Saturday afternoon in The Den.
Loyola (8-11, 5-6 SSAC) got off to a slow start offensively, going scoreless over the first 6:36 of the game. The Wolf Pack defense was stout enough to hold the Blazers to only an eight point lead when Janeicia Neely hit the first Wolf Pack bucket of the contest.
Loyola was trailing 22-17 at halftime after shooting 19% in the first half. Shayne Charles hit two threes and scored eight points as part of a 10-0 run for the Wolf Pack which put them up eight with 13 minutes remaining in the game.
The Blazers (9-12, 6-5 SSAC) hit two threes in the game but they were both huge as Sarah Carr tied the game at 35 with six minutes remaining, then hit another one on the next possession which allowed Belhaven to retake the lead. Neely made one of two free throws with two minutes remaining to tie the score at 40. The Blazers followed by missing four consecutive free throws to keep the score tied heading towards the last possession. After Rayborn scored, Neely grabbed the inbounds pass at half court but could not get a shot off before time expired.
Jasmine Brewer pulled down nine first half rebounds on the way to 13 rebounds in the contest, while also contributing seven points. Charles was the lone Wolf Pack player to score in double figures by tallying 13 points. Neely and Rebekah Greer both scored nine for the Wolf Pack.
Belhaven was led by Rayborn and Carr who both scored 10 points for the Blazers. Erika Leflore pulled down a team high nine rebounds.
Belhaven shot 33% for the game which barely topped the Wolf Pack’s 27%. The victory moves Belhaven into fourth place in the SSAC West. Loyola is currently tied for fifth with Spring Hill.
The Wolf Pack will be back in action on Thursday January 31st at 5:30 p.m. as they host Auburn-Montgomery at The Den.