When her team needed a boost in the second half Saturday, Kyra Collier provided it for the University of Arkansas at Little Rock women's basketball team.
The senior guard finished with 18 points, 10 rebounds and 7 assists to lead the Trojans to a 63-48 victory over the University of Central Arkansas on Saturday in front of an announced crowd of 807 at the Jack Stephens Center in Little Rock.
It was the first time since 1987 that UALR and UCA played each other in a regular-season women's basketball game. They played each other in 2005 in an exhibition game in Little Rock.
Collier scored 10 of her 18 points in the second half as UALR (1-3) outscored UCA 33-17 after trailing 31-30 at halftime.
"We knew we had to come out with a little more fire and a little more pride," Collier said. "We locked in on getting stops and playing transition offense."
Three other players scored at least 10 points for UALR, including freshman forward Alayzha Knapp with 15 points, and junior forward Teal Battle and sophomore forward Krystan Vornes with 11 points apiece.
The Trojans shot 42.9% (24 of 56) and outrebounded the Sugar Bears 38-33. They also forced 15 turnovers.
Junior center Hannah Langhi scored 11 points to lead UCA (1-2). The Sugar Bears were held to 18-of-55 shooting overall (32.7%), including 6 of 23 from the floor in the second half.
"They punched us in the face, and we didn't respond," UCA Coach Sandra Rushing said. "That's been an issue in practice and in both games we've played previous.
"We have to stop pouting. We're saying, 'Oh, they're holding me.' I don't care. It's Division I basketball. It's not high school anymore. Stop complaining and let's go play."
The third quarter was good to the Trojans, as they outscored the Sugar Bears 20-4 in the quarter to lead 50-35 entering the fourth quarter.
Collier's three-point play gave UALR a 35-33 lead with 5:52 left in the third quarter. Thirty seconds later, she knocked down UALR's first three-pointer of the game, and Rushing called timeout with the Trojans leading 38-33.
"That's her role. She's the leader," UALR Coach Joe Foley said. "That broke it open a little for us. She did what we needed her to do."
Vornes' putback off an offensive rebound made it 42-33. UALR stretched its lead to 46-33 before UCA hit its first field goal of the second half, a layup by junior guard Ayanna Trigg with 1:06 remaining in the third quarter.
Collier's basket extended the lead to 50-35 to cap a 20-2 run.
UALR continued to pour it on in the fourth quarter. Collier dished to Battle, whose three-point play made it 61-43 with 3:31 remaining. The Trojans' largest lead was 63-43 with 1:20 left.
UALR trailed 9-4 midway through the first quarter, then used a 17-2 run to lead 21-11 entering the second quarter.
Collier's layup gave the Trojans an 11-9 lead with 4:08 left in the first quarter.
Leading 17-9, Collier got a steal, then passed to senior guard Sydney Chastain for a layup and 19-9 advantage. Collier ended the quarter with a basket that gave the Trojans a 10-point lead.
Foley said the Trojans' intensity was good in the first quarter before it was lost in the second quarter. The Trojans turned things around in the third quarter, Foley said, thanks to their defense.
Sports on 11/17/2019
Print Headline: Collier, UALR bust free in 3rd quarter