CLAREMORE, Okla. – The Rogers State women's basketball team opened the 2017-18 season with a 65-56 win over Western New Mexico on Friday (Nov. 10) at the Holiday Inn Express – Claremore Conference Challenge at the Claremore Expo Center.

After the first period ended tied at 8-8, the navy and red registered the first eight points in the second period to gain a 16-8 lead midway through the stanza. Lindsey Byfield started the spurt with a 3-pointer and free throws from Darian Jackson and Carlye Bohannan along with a layup from Kamry Chamberlain added to the 8-0 run. The Hillcats held a 25-18 advantage at the half.

To start the second half, RSU increased the lead to its largest margin of the game at 32-21 after a three from Chamberlain and two Lauren Schuldt free throws.

After a Jordan Evans layup made it 38-31 in favor of the Hillcats, the Mustangs went on a 10-2 run to take a 41-40 edge early in the fourth period.

Nikola Nedoroscikova helped the Cats gain control with a three-point play to make it 49-45 with 6:36 remaining. Four straight free throws from Schuldt and Nedoroscikova made it 53-47 with 5:19 left. The Hillcats kept control for the 65-56 victory.

Schuldt posted a game-high 23 points, going 13-of-14 shooting from the free throw line. She added eight rebounds and two blocks in 23 minutes. Carlye Bohannan added 10 points in 32 minutes.

The Hillcats shot 18-54 from the field for 33.3 percent. RSU tallied 25 points from the free throw line going 25-of-30 shooting for 83.3 percent from the line.

Saturday’s game

CLAREMORE, Okla. – All 12 players for the Rogers State women's basketball team scored at least two points as it picked up an 85-51 victory over New Mexico Highlands in the final game of the 2017 Holiday Inn Express - Conference Challenge Saturday night at the Claremore Expo Center.

Lauren Schuldt paced five Hillcats in double-digit scoring with a game-high 13 points as the bench out-scored the Cowgirls 37-19. Schuldt added nine rebounds, five blocks and two assists for a perfect 2-0 weekend for RSU. Desiree Nelson hit four of the team's 12 three pointers to finish with 12 points, while Nikola Nedoroscikova added 11 and Darian Jackson and Kolby McIntosh each totaled 10.

The Hillcats used a wide, 27-9, margin in made free throws to put away NMHU, while shooting 79.4 percent at the charity stripe and trailed for only one possession to start the game.

After the Cowgirls evened the score, 5-5, the Hillcats scored the next eight points to take command of the first quarter as Carlye Bohannan knocked down a triple from the wing. RSU led by as many as 10 points before ending the frame with a 17-8 advantage by making the extra pass that led to easy baskets.

The Hillcats quickly extended their margin in the second quarter as Nedoroscikova connected on back-to-back threes pushing the lead to 23-8. NMHU chipped away at its deficit, but only trimmed it down to seven with 14 seconds remaining. Nelson capped the half with a perfect pump fake and drained a three pointer as time expired sending the Hillcats to intermission with a 34-24 advantage.

NMHU closed the gap to single digits, 36-27, but RSU could not be stopped the remained of the stanza scoring the final 15 points of the third quarter during a 24-4 run.

RSU dominated the glass holding a 59-26 edge in rebounds as five players recorded at least six board for the navy and red. Schuldt led the team with nine, while Jackson and Ke'Aunna Johnson each posted eight.

The Hillcats (2-0) hit the road for a rivalry matchup at Northeastern State Wednesday night (Nov. 15) in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. The game is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. as part of a women's and men's doubleheader against the Riverhawks.

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