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Lady Blazers’ Season Ends in GSC Quarterfinal at Top-Seeded Union

Posted at 11:45 PM, Mar 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-03 23:45:27-05

JACKSON, Tenn. – The Valdosta State women's basketball season came to an end with an 88-48 loss at top-seeded Union on Tuesday evening. Sophomore Abby Rouse and senior Cheray Saunders each had 13 points for VSU.

The Lady Blazers finish 18-11 overall and went 10-10 in the GSC under first year head coach Deandra Schirmer. Even though the season ended in disappointing fashion, Schirmer laid a great foundation for next season for the Lady Blazers.

VSU shot 18 of 74 from the field against Union, while it went 8 of 37 from range and was just 4 of 6 from the line. Rouse was 5 of 16 from the field and drained a team-high three triples, while
Saunders was 5 of 15 from the floor with two treys, six rebounds, five assists and three steals in her final game as a Lady Blazer. Junior Kayla Bonilla, who was announced as a second team all-conference selection Tuesday afternoon, finished with seven points and seven rebounds.

Union (24-5) shot 32 of 65 from the field for a 49.2 average, while it drained 11 treys and went 13 of 19 from the line. Union held a 57-35 lead in rebounding. Jada Smith, who was named GSC Player of the Year Tuesday, paced the Lady Bulldogs with 25 points (23 in the first half) on 11 of 16 from the field and tallied eight assists for the game. Jaelencia Williams added 15 points with a team-high 16 rebounds, while Jacie Higgins had ten rebounds and nine points. Off the bench, Union had 14 points from Leah Cauble and 10 from Sadie Knee.

VSU scored the first five points of the game, but the Lady Bulldogs came roaring back for the lead for good on a fast break jumper from Smith for a 12-10 lead with 3:42 left in the first quarter. A jumper by Bonilla for a 15-12 deficit with 2:30 left was the final bucket of the frame for the Lady Blazers as Union drained triples from Smith and Cauble for a 21-12 lead through one quarter.

Lady Blazer freshman Kendall Bollmer pulled VSU within 35-23 with 5:07 left in the half, but Union ended the half on a 15-0 run for a 50-23 lead at the break. VSU scored 16 points in third quarter for its best frame of the game, but was outscored in the fourth 23-9 for the final margin.