The Baton Rouge Community College women’s basketball team is back in action Thursday as it travels to take on Copiah-Lincoln Community College for a 5 p.m. tipoff.
It has been nearly a week since the Lady Bears escaped with a nail-biting 64-63 win at Southern-Shreveport to kick off Miss-Lou Conference play.
“It was an extremely important win,” BRCC coach Paula Lee said. “Because most of our conference games are on the road this year, it was good that we started out with a win that gave us confidence to play on the road.”
However, the win did not come easily by any means.
Up by a point with 10 seconds left in the game, BRCC freshman point guard Kasiney Williams was sent to the free-throw line for a one-and-one with a chance to give the Lady Bears a bit of breathing room. Her first free throw rimmed out, allowing Southern-Shreveport to rebound and quickly call a timeout to draw up a final play.
Out of the break, the Lady Jaguars got the ball to leading scorer Tytionna Pratt, but her shot at the buzzer was a little strong, allowing BRCC to head back home with the win.
“I told them in the timeout that we needed just one defensive stop,” Lee recalled. “I was relieved because Pratt had been making shots for most of the night. When I saw that she got off an open shot I said, ‘Oh, no.’”
Lee and the Lady Bears now take a brief break from conference play to take on Region 23 powerhouse Copiah-Lincoln. These two teams are no strangers. Copiah-Lincoln came into Baton Rouge last week and knocked off BRCC 62-59 in an overtime thriller.
The loss was particularly tough to take for Lee as she watched her players make only nine of 19 free throws in the second half. She hopes for a different result this time around.
“In watching the film, our players saw a lot of things that they could have done better,” Lee said. “We make half of our free throws, and we are not even in a position to go into overtime.”
While revenge may play a factor, Lee said her team needs this win to help strengthen its résumé for the NJCAA tourney.
“Even though they are not in our conference, this is still an important game because Copiah-Lincoln plays in Region 23, as do we,” Lee said. “Any win that we can get over a team in our region will help us qualify for the regional tournament.
“Sure there is a bit of a revenge factor, but more importantly, it’s a chance to get a win against a powerhouse program like Copiah-Lincoln.”
To pull out the marquee win on the road, Lee will have to turn to her leading sophomores, especially forward Talaih Robertson, who is averaging nine points and five rebounds.
“She has really stepped up her game lately,” Lee said of Robertson. “Without a doubt, we are going to have to rely on her heavily.”