NEW ORLEANS — Little Rock clinched back-to-back Sun Belt Tournament Championships with their 57-56 win over South Alabama. Kyra Collier, the tournament's Most Outstanding Player led her team with 21 points and four steals. Also making the Sun Belt All-Tournament team was Ronjanae DeGray, notching her tenth double-double of the season tallying 19 points and 10 rebounds.
Raeyana DeGray put in a very gritty performance, finishing just one-point shy of a double-double with nine points and 10 boards. Terrion Moore played all 40 minutes and played lockdown defense down the stretch to preserve the victory. The sophomore notched seven points, five assists and four rebounds on the day.
Moore got things started for the Trojans on the offensive end as the sophomore knocked down a short jumper in the lane. A fastbreak layup from Collier tied the score after a steal by Ro. DeGray. Another layup from Collier would give Little Rock the lead. Ra. DeGray got in on the action with a nice turnaround jumper with her back to the goal to make it a 7-0 run. Two and-one's from Ro. DeGray would give the Trojans an 18-13 lead after the first 10 minutes.
Collier picked up where she left off and drove to the basket for a strong layup on Little Rock's first possession in the second quarter. A three-pointer from Ro. DeGray pushed her team's lead to 10 points on the next possession. Collier finished off a beautiful pass from Moore with a reverse layup to continue the offensive barrage. However, the Jaguars would put together a run towards the end of the half to cut the lead to two points despite good halves from Collier and Ro. DeGray. Little Rock took a 31-29 lead heading into the break.
The Jaguars came out on the front foot to start the second half and took a three-point lead to force a Little Rock timeout. Baskets from Moore and Collier kept the Trojans within one point just before the media timeout in the third period. A fadeaway from Collier gave the Trojans the lead right after the timeout. Two free-throws from Ro. DeGray knotted up the score at 45 just before the end of the third quarter.
Raeyana DeGray cleaned up the boards with a put-back layup to give the Trojans the lead early in the fourth quarter. Back-to-back baskets from the senior provided some much-needed production in the final period. Another three-point play from Ro. DeGray gave her team a three-point lead with just over seven minutes to play. The Jaguars would take a one-point with just over a minute to play.
To cap off her brilliant tournament, Collier scooped in a left-handed layup to put the Trojans up by one point with just seconds to play. Little Rock managed to clamp down on the defensive end and force an air ball on South Alabama's final possession to clinch a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the second straight season.
The Trojans will learn their seeding as well as the date and time of their next contest during the NCAA Selection show on Monday, March 18. The Selection Show watch party will take place Monday inside the Legends Room of the Jack Stephens Center, doors opening at 5:30 p.m. while the show begins at 6 p.m.