Denton, TX -- The Lady Techsters came into the Super Pit ready to compete on Thursday, February 25 as they dismantled the Mean Green in a second half rally, 78-67.
North Texas came out strong offensively in the beginning of the matchup, and they were able to maintain a strong hold throughout the first quarter with a five-point lead, 22-17. Junior guard Kelsey Criner led the team with 11 in the first 10 minutes, going perfect from the field and the free throw line.
At halftime the Mean Green led by three, 37-34, while holding their turnovers to nine and outrebounding the Lady Techsters 16 to 15.
Turnovers late in the third quarter and the Lady Techsters' ability to get on the offensive boards fueled Louisiana Tech's fight beginning in the second half. Louisiana Tech was able to outscore North Texas 27-16 in the third quarter in an all-out defensive battle.
"Three-point lead at halftime and we don't come out of the locker room," North Texas Head Coach Jalie Mitchell said. "27 and 16 in the third quarter cost us the game."
It was senior guard Brooke Pumroy, who opened that fiery third quarter with two back-to-back three's, extending her point total to 14 and gaining the lead for the Lady Techsters at the midpoint of the third quarter, 48-43.
Heading into the fourth and final quarter, they were able to gather a healthy eight-point lead, holding the Mean Green to 53 points while they charged ahead with 61.
Louisiana Tech was able to continue attacking the offensive glass and run their transition to finish the game with an 11-point victory. They finished the game with 15 offensive rebounds and a total of four players in double figures.
"We didn't get back in transition quick enough and find our man," North Texas guard Candice Adams said.
Pumroy led all scorers with 21, while forward Reauna Cleaver, forward Brandi Wingate and guard Ashley Santos added 12 each, respectively. For the Mean Green, Kelsey Criner led all with 18 after a 15-point first half performance.
Even though they fall to 9-16 for the season, there is plenty of hope for the Mean Green team. Under new head coach Jalie Mitchell, North Texas has almost doubled the wins from last season, as North Texas went 5-24 overall and 4-14 in conference play in the 2014-15 season. Shortly after, Head Coach Mike Petersen and North Texas mutually agreed to part ways, and the Jalie Mitchell era began.
Mitchell, a graduate from North Texas, became the eighth head coach in the women's basketball program. Upon her arrival, Mitchell was able to snag several transfers highlighted by Big 12 transfers Tyara Warren from West Virginia, and Terriell Bradley from Kansas.
The Mean Green will receive some much-needed relief after their redshirt seasons come to a close upon completion of this 2015-2016 season. Mitchell spoke about her first season and the team's growth.
"We've had some successes, I do think we have won more games than people expected us to," Mitchell said. "I think that from a culture standpoint, we've made some strides."
North Texas will finish out their home play for their 2015-2016 season as they host their senior night on Saturday, February 27, 2016, against the Southern Miss Golden Eagles at 2 pm.