WICHITA, Kan. — Wichita State held off a late fourth-quarter rally to defeat Southern 57-53 in women's basketball on Friday night.
Sophomore guard Genovea Johnson led all scorers with 23 points, adding four rebounds and three assists for the Lady Jaguars (0-3). Junior guard Amani Mcwain added 14 points and four rebounds in 29 minutes.
"I thought our kids played extremely hard tonight and did a much better job executing against a zone defense. The unfortunate thing was we didn't knock down our open shots," coach Carlos Funchess said. "Once again Genovea Johnson had to carry us offensively, but we will need some of the others to step up and help her with the scoring load."
Seraphine Bastin and DJ McCarty scored a team-high tying 11 points for Wichita State (3-0). McCarty dished out six assists. Asia Strong finished with 10 points on 4-of-13 shooting.
The Shockers shot just 38% in the second half to finish at 44.7% for the game and connected on only 2 of 10 attempts from 3-point range.
Southern owned a seven-rebound edge.
Neither team led by more than four in the first quarter, which saw five ties and three lead changes.
The Shockers scored just four points over the final 4:30 of the half but still took a 30-24 lead into the locker room.
Both teams came out sluggish to start the second half, but Wichita State grabbed a 39-28 lead with 3:17 to go in the third quarter.
Just when it looked like the Shockers were going to pull away, Southern clawed back, closing to within six points, 44-38, through three quarters.
Wichita State tried again to pull away, building a double-digits with 2:30 remaining, but Southern did not quit.
A 7-0 run put the Lady Jaguars within five points with 41.4 seconds remaining. Southern came as close as four before McCarty iced it at the free-throw line with 11.8 seconds left.
Southern is off until a Dec. 16 trip to Waco, Texas, to face No. 4 Baylor.
"We're going to take off a couple of days and get back to work on Monday after this long road trip," Funchess said.