STOCKTON, Calif. – Anisha George
capitalized on her first career start with her first double-double for North Texas on career and game-highs of 17 points and 12 rebounds, but the Mean Green stumbled in their first game at the Tiger Turkey Tipoff hosted by Pacific in a 53-49 loss to Wyoming Friday afternoon inside the Alex G. Spanos Center.
George was quite effective battling underneath for North Texas (1-3, 0-0 C-USA) as the junior post connected on seven of her 11 shot attempts while grabbing six boards on both the offensive and defensive end and tallying three blocks. Trena Mims
added 11 points and a game-high four assists, as Terriell Bradley
and Grace Goodhart
each had nine points.
"Anisha had a presence inside for us," Head Coach Jalie Mitchell
said. "We have to have that to be effective."
The Mean Green held Wyoming (1-4, 0-0 Mountain West) to 34 points under their season scoring average but had their own offensive struggles while shooting 35-percent from the field, including a 2-of-14 showing from behind the arc.
UNT erased an early double-digit deficit and pulled to within 46-43 in the fourth quarter with 3:47 to play on a bucket in the paint by George. The score remained constant until the Cowgirls sank a 3-pointer from the top of the key with 1:05 on the clock. On the next possession, Bradley answered with a three of her own to again make it a three-point contest. Wyoming hit two from the free throw line while Mims made one-of-two with 14 seconds remaining as the Cowgirls hung onto a 51-47 lead. George made it a two-point game on a layup with three seconds to go, but Wyoming then hit two from the line to seal the four-point victory.
George began the scoring for North Texas with a three-point play midway through the first quarter, but it was just one of two field goals in the period along with a baseline jumper by Goodhart. The Cowgirls closed the quarter with two buckets for a 14-6 lead.
Wyoming stretched the lead to 20-10 two minutes into the second quarter, but a pair of layups by George and a jumper from Bradley pulled the Mean Green to within 20-16. Mims made a shot in the paint and Goodhart drilled a three from the left wing to cut the margin to 22-21 with 3:15 until the half. The Cowgirls sank a three, and George scored as Wyoming took a slight 25-23 edge into the break.
took a charge to open the second half, and Mims hit a shot off of the glass to tie the game. Back-to-back Cowgirl threes extended the lead to 34-27 before Mims and Goodhart each tallied a jumper to close within three. Wyoming recorded the final bucket of the quarter to again extend the lead to seven.
George made a layup nine seconds into the fourth quarter and sank a pair of free throws while Mims hit a floater at the 7:22 mark to cut into the Cowgirl lead at 44-39. A jumper by Goodhart with 4:28 remaining then made it 46-41 in the closing minutes.
"We are going to rest and recuperate and come back tomorrow," Mitchell said.
The Mean Green conclude play in the Tiger Turkey Tipoff Saturday with a 2:30 p.m. CST contest against North Dakota State.