NACOGDOCHES, Texas (11/14/09) - A slow start in the first half proved to be too much for the North Texas women's basketball team to overcome and the Mean Green fell 81-51 to Stephen F. Austin in the 2009-10 season opener Saturday evening.
Junior guard Brittney James scored a team-high 17 points and Niq'ky Hughes also scored in double figures with 10 points.
Overall North Texas (0-1) shot just 25 percent from the field and turned the ball over 29 times. The Mean Green also struggled from the free throw line (25-of-44).
SFA (1-0) improved to 27-1 all-time against the Mean Green and a perfect 16-0 at William R. Johnson Coliseum. The Lady Jacks were led in scoring by Jordan Ford (16 points) and Whitney Cormier (13 points).
The North Texas offense got off to a rough start in the first half, committing 10 turnovers in the first eight minutes and fell behind 17-6. SFA built a lead as big as 16 points in the game's first 20 minutes despite making only nine of their first 37 shots from the field.
James single-handedly kept the Mean Green close by scoring 12 first half points, including a stretch of six straight that cut SFA's lead down to 27-21 with a 1:52 left in the half. However, the Lady Jacks went on a 6-1 run to make the score 33-22 at halftime.
By half's end the Mean Green shot only 6-of-22 (27 percent) from the field, committed 20 turnovers and allowed 16 offensive rebounds.
North Texas never got closer than 11 points in the second half and struggled at the charity stripe (15-of-27).
The Mean Green will next play George Washington on Tuesday, Nov. 17 in the home opener. Tipoff from The Super Pit is scheduled for 7 p.m.