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|Upchurch nets 30 in win|
Northwestern State University senior forward Jasmine Upchurch never experienced a game like she had on November 20 when the Lady Demons hosted Wiley College.
"I just felt like I could not miss," Upchurch said, "That is until I missed three straight free throws at the end of the game before making my last two."
Upchurch scored a career-high 30 points and had 14 rebounds to lead the Northwestern State women's basketball team past Wiley College 65-57.
"They were playing man-to-man and I had to work for my points by making good moves in the post and getting offensive boards and put-backs," said the 6-foot-3 Upchurch. who made 8-of-11 free throws in the game. "I got fouled a lot and had a few after making a basket which made a difference."
Upchurch scored 30 points against Jonesboro-Hodge her junior year playing for her mother, Lisa Abron, at Ferriday High.
It was Upchurch's ninth double-double and the 23rd double-digit scoring effort of her career. She also contributed two steals and one assist.
"Jasmine's energy started us off, and there for a while she was the only thing going," said first-year head coach Brooke Stoehr. "Aside from her stats I thought she really brought a lot of energy and her mental focus was really good."
Northwesten led 26-23 at halftime.
"At the beginning of the game we started off slow and I was trying to get the rest of my teammates to play hard and rebound hard by bringing a spark after the second media time out," Upchurch said. "I feel like if I'm scoring everybody else will score and play hard. My coach keeps saying if we give effort we'll win the game so that's what I did. I didn't realize I had a lot of points till the middle of the second half I just played hard because I didn't want to lose."
Northwestern State (4-2) is off to its best start since the 2005 season when the Lady Demons won four of their first five. The Lady Demons won six total games last year.
Upchurch leads the Lady Demons with 12.3 points a game and 6.8 rebounds
"Jasmine is figuring out how to be consistent on both ends of the floor," Stoehr said. "She has been very consistent. Any time you have a coaching change it's like everyone is a rookie and they are having to learn a new system. 'Jas' is very talented and has a lot of skills. It's rare seeing a big player able to step out and shoot the ball as well as she does. She's a big reason we are 4-2. We're excited about our start, especially after the team had six wins last year. We just stress to them to get better each game. The things you can control are effort and energy and we ask them to bring that every single time we step on the floor."
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