By Chad Peters
San Antonio — Lady Rattlers sophomore guard Becca Herbst was just about perfect in St. Mary’s 77-62 conference victory over Oklahoma Panhandle State on Saturday. Herbst, scoring 20 points and grabbing six rebounds, went 5-for-5 from downtown and 7-of-9 overall, leading the Rattlers’ hot shooting hand in front of 452 at Bill Greehey Arena.
Junior post Charlena Rodez’s 22 points led St. Mary’s. Sophomore post Flavia Azinheira also scored double digits, finishing with 13 points and seven rebounds. Azinheira’s seven rebounds tied for the team lead, along with junior point guard Dawn Killian, who also pitched in five points and a team-leading seven assists.
The Lady Rattlers (13-10, 6-3) struggled with 28 turnovers, but a 25-for-45 shooting performance — including 7-off-11 from downtown — helped alleviate those concerns. St. Mary’s more than doubled Panhandle State’s production on the glass, outrebounding the Aggies 41-to-19. The Lady Rattlers’ defense also limited Panhandle State to a mere 31.6-percent shooting performance.
With the victory, St. Mary’s grabbed its third-straight conference win and moved past Oklahoma Panhandle State (5-4 in Heartland Conference) for third-place in the conference. St. Mary’s now is a mere half-game back from St. Edward’s — whom the the Lady Rattlers defeated earlier this season — for second place, and a full game back from Montana State-Billings, which currently resides in first place.
St. Mary’s returns to action on Tuesday, traveling to Lincoln in another pivotal conference matchup. Tip-off is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.