UL Women’s Basketball vs. UALR: Preview & Keys To Victory
UL sophomore guard Kia Wilridge
Louisiana’s Ragin’ Cajun women’s basketball team is back in action on Wednesday night, when they travel to Little Rock, Arkansas, to take on the UALR Trojans in a Sun Belt Conference match-up.
The game will mark the first game of a stretch in which the UL women will play three of their next four on the road.
Louisiana, who fell to the WKU Lady Toppers, 68-63, on Saturday, has lost three straight, and currently stands at 10-8, overall, and 3-4 in Sun Belt Conference play.
That 3-4 league mark puts the Cajuns in a tie for seventh place with ULM in the conference standings, only one full game out of fourth place, and two full games behind third place.
WKU, who is 9-9, overall, to go along with their 4-4 league mark, lost to first place Arkansas St., 77-45, on Saturday, to fall into sixth place in the conference standings.
Offensively, UL is currently sixth in the conference, scoring 65.6 points-per-game, while UALR ranks tenth, averaging 57.3 points a contest.
Defensively, the Cajuns rank second in the league, allowing 63.2 points-per-game, while the Trojans are giving up 57.6 points a tilt, which ranks first in the conference.
Louisiana is led by sophomore guard Sylvana Okde, who is averaging 12.3 points-per-game, while UALR is paced by junior forward Kiera Clark, who is scoring at a 10.3 points-per-game clip.
The Trojans lead the all-time series, 13-8, including a 48-41 win over UL in February of 2013, the last time the two schools met.
Tip-off time is scheduled for 7 o'clock.
Keys to victory:
If the UL women are going to pick up a road victory, they’re probably going to have a play one of their better games. The Cajuns are still without the services of the injured Keke Veal, and UALR is very good at home.
The game will feature the top two defensive teams in the league, so possessions will be precious, and points will be at a premium.
When Louisiana has the ball, offensively, they have to protect the basketball, be patient, and find a way to hit some key shots. If they can shoot over 40%, which won't be easy against UALR, they can come away with a victory.
Louisiana, who ranks first turnover margin, will have to use their pressure defense to not only get them some easy buckets after turnovers, but to also wear down UALR, and maybe make things a little bit easier on themselves on the offensive end.
The Cajuns also can ill-afford to go on a stretch where they have trouble putting the ball in the basket. They had one of those stretches in the first half of their recent loses to Troy and Georgia St., but were able to stay away from that type of stretch in a good outing against WKU.
With Veal out, Louisiana is relying heavily on Sylvana okde and Brooklyn Arceneaux to provide the bulk of the scoring. Somebody, along with those two, will have to step up and have a big game if the Cajuns are to snap that losing streak.