STATESBORO, Ga. - UT Arlington was unable to push its winning streak to four games as Georgia Southern spoiled the road trips finale, taking Saturday's contest 73-68 at Hanner Fieldhouse in Sun Belt play.
The Lady Mavericks took a six-point lead into the final five minutes, but a 7-2 run pushed Georgia Southern ahead for good, including knocking down the team's eighth 3-pointer of the day. UTA fell to 11-10 overall and 5-5 in league play. The Lady Mavs fell for the first time when leading going to the final 10 minutes, winning the previous nine entering the day. Georgia Southern picked up its first league win and went to 4-16 overall and 1-8 in the Sun Belt.
The win was Georgia Southern's first in six meetings with the Lady Mavericks.
Rebekah VanDijk earned her 45th-career double-double and third consecutive, scoring 20 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. The senior was 8-for-8 from the field, becoming the first player in single-game history to have a perfect shooting performance with more than five shots taken. Crystal Allen finished with 18 points behind four from long range, following up five treys hit on Thursday.
UTA returns back to College Park Center to begin a season-long three-game homestand when it hosts Appalachian State on Thursday at 5 p.m. The week continues against Coastal Carolina on Saturday and Texas State on Feb. 27.
HOW IT HAPPENED
First Quarter: UTA's connection from 3-point land sparked a quick run into a double-figure lead. Richard's hit an inside jumper for the opening points, followed it with a steal on the other end and dished to Aysia Evan's for one of UTA's four from deep in the first 10 minutes. Evans joined with Allen to knock down the long ball, sparking a 9-0 run on the way to a 12-point advantage after one. The 25 points scored were tied for second most in the opening frame this season, behind the 26 put up on Thursday night at Georgia State.
Georgia Southern flipped the script in the second frame as it got hot from long range. The Eagles hit on three of their seven attempts, after missing all four in the first 10 minutes. Allen's inside put back ended a 7-0 run for Georgia Southern before both teams struggled on the offensive side in the final two minutes. UTA led at halftime 40-32, shooting 54.8 percent to Georgia Southern's 52.0.
Third Quarter: The Eagles continued to hold their momentum from deep in the third quarter, knocking down another three from long range. Following a 9-0 run and holding UTA without a point for more than three minutes, Georgia Southern took its first lead midway through the period. Allen completed UTA's strong close to the quarter with her fourth 3-pointer of the game to give the Lady Mavs a three-point advantage.
Fourth Quarter: A string of fouls slowed down play to begin the final frame, but it was UTA that was able to get a brief edge. UTA picked up momentum with a 6-0 run to find itself up by five with less than five to play. Georgia Southern came right back to spark a string itself, bringing it to just a three-point edge at the final media timeout.
UTA would catch cold down the stretch and Georgia Southern stepped up. The Eagles flew into the lead on a 7-2 run, hitting a go-ahead 3-pointer with two minutes to go. UTA couldn't trim the deficit any closer than three as GS knocked down all six free throws in the final minute.
KEY STATS UTA shot 46.4 percent from the field, going to 7-3 when hitting above 40 percent this season. Georgia Southern shot 51.9 percent on 27-of-52 shots… Laurynn McGowen had back-to-back double-figure performances with 13 points.