The Western Oklahoma State College Lady Pioneers kicked off their season on the road at Cisco College on Nov. 3. The result was a 69-54 victory that came after Western poured in 29 points in a dominating second quarter performance while holding Cisco to 10.
The Lady Pioneers continued to build that lead in the third quarter and led by as many as 19 before Cisco outscored Western 20-16 in the fourth to pull within 15 points as the final buzzer sounded.
It was a game that showed off what the Lady Pioneers could accomplish with the team shooting 42 percent from the field. The starters combined for 63 points on 50 percent shooting.
Ariel Williams led all scorers with 30 points and also pulled down a team-high nine rebounds. Paradize Jackson chipped in 19 points, making six of her 11 three-point shot attempts.
But while the Lady Pioneers were the picture of consistency in the first game of the season, they struggled to settle into a rhythm during a matchup with the Hill College Lady Rebels and ultimately lost by a final score of 80-47.
Williams again led the team with 18 points and seven rebounds and Jackson followed her with a 14-point performance, but it was only the beginning for the Lady Pioneers’ struggles.
In a Monday night game against the junior varsity squad of Paul Quinn College, Western had its worst offensive shooting night of the young season. The team shot 26.5 percent in a 51-41 game that saw the Lady Pioneers’ offense come alive in the fourth quarter to outscore Paul Quinn 23-13 for the win.
Despite struggling on offense, the Lady Pioneers had their best defensive game of the season when they pulled down 32 rebounds, blocked three shots and came up with 15 steals.
The bulk of Western’s offense came from reserve player Kayla Smith who shot 75 percent from the field for 13 points.
Three games into the season, the Lady Pioneers are 2-1 and are seeing solid offensive production from freshman guards Williams and Jackson. Williams leads all players with 17.7 points per game while shooting 44.9 percent from the field. Jackson is close behind her with 14 points per game while shooting 38.7 percent from the field and 42.9 percent from beyond the arc.
Third on the team is Ke’Ira Pickett who is scoring eight points per game while shooting 23.5 percent from the field.
The Lady Pioneers look to rebound against the Oklahoma Baptist University Basketball Club at the WOSC gymnasium at 2 p.m. Saturday.
Reach Ryan Lewis at 580-482-1221, ext. 2076.