Jackrabbits run past and over Centenary

Chris Mangan

Chris Mangan

In a match-up between the first-place and last-place team in the Summit League, one could expect the outcome.

The SDSU women’s basketball team cruised past Centenary 97-52 on Feb. 28 in Shreveport, La. The win was the 13th straight for the Jacks (27-2, 16-1) and gave them at least a share of the regular season Summit League title, their second straight regular season title.

“There are not easy wins, but I thought we played very well today, both offensively and defensively,” SDSU head coach Aaron Johnston told The Shreveport Times. “A lot of teams don’t put emphasis on the regular season, but winning it was one of our goals at the start of the season. It was big for us.”

The Jacks used the strength of a 15-4 run midway through the first half to take a double-digit lead and help take a 43-24 halftime lead.

Things kept going south for the Ladies in the second half. The Jacks opened the second half on a 17-1 run and took a 60-25 lead.

The Jacks pushed the lead to 92-44 late in the game, thanks in part to hot shooting in the second half. The Jacks shot over 61 percent from the floor in the second half. Academic All-American Jennifer Warkenthien led five players in double figures with 18 points. Kristin Rotert, Jill Young and Stacie Oistad had 15 points a piece, while Maria Boever had 13.

The defense was its usual stifling self for the Jacks, as SDSU forced 26 Centenary turnovers and held the Ladies to 37 percent shooting in the second half. Chelsea Johnson was the only Centenary player to score in double digits; the freshman guard had 17 points.

The first time the two teams met was back in early December when the Jacks downed the Ladies 63-41 at Frost Arena.

“I knew they were good, but we played them even up there in December with the same players,” Centenary coach Steve Curtis told The Shreveport Times. “They’ve improved, and they really do a good job taking advantage of your mistakes. But like I told the girls in the locker room, they didn’t win that No. 16 ranking in a lottery. They’re good for a reason.”