DENTON, Texas (1/13/11) - The North Texas women's basketball team snapped a five-game losing streak with a 76-69 victory against FIU on Thursday night at the Super Pit.
The Mean Green improves its overall record to 4-14 and won its first conference game of the season after starting the year 0-4. The 76-69 win was the largest margin of victory for the Mean Green this season. FIU falls to 6-12 and 1-4 in the Sun Belt.
North Texas jumped out to an early lead in the first half and then had to hold off the Golden Panthers down the stretch. After the Mean Green led by as many as 20 points in the second half, FIU cut the lead to six points multiple times in the final minutes but Denetra Kellum went 8-for-8 from the free-throw line in the final 30 seconds to seal the win.
Kellum scored in double-figures for the ninth straight game. She led the team with 29 points and recorded her third double-double of the season with 14 rebounds. The 29 points is one point shy of tying a career high and the 14 rebounds is a personal best.
Kellum went 14-for-14 from the free-throw, recording the best free-throw performance in school history. It is the fourth-most free throws made in a single game at North Texas.
Behind 60 percent shooting, the Mean Green jumped out to a 40-23 halftime lead. The score was the largest lead at the mid-point for the Mean Green this season. It was only the fifth time this season that North Texas led at the half.
After FIU cut the Mean Green lead to two points, 18-16, at 6:41 in the first half, North Texas exploded for 11 straight points. Kellum hit a three-pointer and Hudson made a layup to put North Texas ahead, 29-16. The Mean Green scored 11 of the final 16 points of the first half, entering the break with a 40-23 lead.
Following a three-pointer by Ash'Lynne Evans, North Texas held a 20-point lead, 47-27, at 13:11 in the second half. FIU went on a 10-5 run with under five minutes to play to cut the Mean Green lead to single-digits, 64-57, at 1:02.
FIU was forced to foul, and Kellum and the Mena Green were perfect from the line.
North Texas shot a season-high 50 percent from the field. FIU was held to 34 percent shooting.
The Mean Green returns to action on Saturday, Jan. 15 when it faces Troy on the road at 4 p.m.