WKU (11-4, 3-1) jumped ahead early with an 18-2 run to jump up 23-6 over the first 10:32 of the game
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – WKU held UALR to just 39 points, including 15 in the first half, en route to a 65-39 win over the Trojans, the preseason favorite to win the league championship in the preseason coaches’ poll.
The Lady Toppers recorded the 26-point win, their largest against a Sun Belt Conference opponent under Michelle Clark-Heard and largest against UALR since 2005, despite having junior All-America candidate Alexis Govan on the bench due to injury for the fourth consecutive game.
WKU (11-4, 3-1) jumped ahead early with an 18-2 run to jump up 23-6 over the first 10:32 of the game. During the run, WKU hit five three-point field goals and knocked down five of the first seven attempts from behind the three-point arc in the contest.
Senior guard Chaney Means had 11 points, including 3-of-3 shooting from behind the three-point arc, to pace three WKU players in double figures. Means was 4-of-5 from the field in 19 minutes. Junior Chastity Gooch added a game-high 15 points and eight rebounds while sophomore Micah Jones had 14 points, including 9-of-10 shooting from the free throw line.
“I’m super happy for our team right now,” said Michelle Clark-Heard. “Every game and every day, different people step up and they grow. It’s such a fun group to coach. I’m just super proud of them. Different people do different things at different times, but I feel like Chaney Means was huge for us when she came in and she hit those three’s. I think the momentum just started to go. The biggest thing I’m proud of is our defense. We changed up and we did some different things. We started out in the zone and I don’t think they were ready for that. The gameplan was just to do it for a couple possessions and see what we could get out of it. This morning in shootaround, the kids were really confident in running it and so I’m just super proud of them. When you watch your team grow and you’re able to do change ups and different things defensively, it shows you where your team and their maturity are going and I’m just super proud of them.”
UALR (8-7, 3-2) was limited to just 28.3 percent shooting from the field and committed 23 turnovers, leading to 18 WKU points.