Late run pushes Zia squad to 5-1

Freedom Newspapers

LAWTON, Okla. — Tiana Bryant posted a double-double with 20 points and 10 rebounds and sparked a late 8-0 run that gave Eastern New Mexico University enough of a cushion to survive in a 66-65 win Saturday in a Lone Star Conference crossover game at Cameron University.

Bryant also had a pair of steals in the final 10 seconds as the Zias protected a one-point lead to improve to 5-1 on the season and win what was easily their closest game so far in the season. Previously, ENMU had won its first four games by an average of 24 points and suffered a 73-46 blowout against Southeastern Oklahoma.

The Zias trailed Cameron (2-5) by 10 with 12:48 left in the second half, but chipped away at the lead with a Bryant layup and a 3-pointer by Riikka Lehtonen, who had 11 points and nine rebounds for the Zias.

A 3-pointer by Bryant with 4:11 remaining tied the score at 61-61 and started an 8-0 run that included layups from Bryant and Heather Brown.

The Zias took their biggest lead of the night, 66-61, when Bryant hit 1-of-2 free throws with 1:18 to play.

Tiffany Williams, who led Cameron with 20 points on 8-of-15 shooting, inched her team closer with a pair of free throws and a layup, but the Lady Aggies’ final two possessions ended with steals by Bryant.

Brown and Missy Kirkland each had nine for the Zias, while Brittany Cooksey had 12 and Melissa Steen 10 for Cameron.

The Zias return home for a Thursday crossover game against Texas A&M-Commerce, with tipoff scheduled for 5:30 p.m.