Georgia State rides dominant first half to victory over Louisiana-Monroe

Senior guard Kendra Long lead the Panthers in scoring with 21 points in 77-66 win over Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday night. Photo by Georgia State Sports Communications

Senior guard Kendra Long led the Panthers in scoring with 21 points in 77-66 win over Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday night.
Photo by Georgia State Sports Communications

Georgia State (9-10, 5-2) put their foot on the gas and never looked back as they defeated Louisiana-Monroe (7-12, 3-4), 77-66.

The only time the Warhawks had a lead was in the opening minutes, when the score was 3-2, after senior guard Jasmine Shaw hits a 3.

Afterwards, Louisiana-Monroe would never see a lead again.

Georgia State began their game of dominance by breaking out to a 13-7 run, led by senior guard Kendra Long.

Long had an off night on Thursday against Louisiana-Lafayette, shooting 3-of-11 from the field for ten points.

Long’s performance Thursday was long forgotten as she helped extend the Panthers lead with 11 points at the half.

Georgia State’s dominance never stopped, leading 45-29 at half time.

The Panthers’ aggressive defense held Louisiana-Monroe to 27% shooting (9-of-33) and they out rebounded the Warhawks, 26-15.

All-Sun Belt senior guard Ashleigh Simmons tried to keep Louisiana-Monroe in the game, scoring eight points by half time but her heroic effort wasn’t enough as Georgia State kept the lead until the final buzzer.

Simmons finished the game with 21 points and 10 rebounds.

Long redeemed herself with Saturday’s performance, finishing with 21 points, five rebounds and two assists.

“A conference road win is always a good feeling,” head coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener said (via Georgia State Athletics). “We shared the ball well, shot the ball well, rebounded the ball well and played good defense in the first half, but we were way too nonchalant in the second half.”

Saturday’s win against Louisiana-Monroe tied head coach Baldwin-Tener’s longest win streak at Georgia State with four.

Georgia State plays South Alabama on Wednesday at home, who defeated the Panthers 65-57 in Mobile, Al. on Jan. 4.

A win against South Alabama will give the Panthers an opportunity to avenge their loss against the Jaguars and extend their win streak to five.