Texas guard Lashann Higgs (10) shoots as West Virginia guard Bria Holmes, left, defends, in the second quarter of an NCAA college basketball game in the Big 12 women's tournament in Oklahoma City, Sunday, March 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

BEVO BEAT Women's Basketball

Texas women cruise past Northwestern State, 86-39

Posted November 23rd, 2016

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The Texas women will find out soon enough if they are making progress toward their goal of becoming a better team than last season. Just not on Wednesday.

Reserve guard Lashann Higgs scored 14 points as the 14th-ranked Longhorns defeated Northwestern State, an opponent that presented little challenge, 86-39 at the Erwin Center.

The Longhorns showed a major asset, depth, as six players scored in double figures. Joyner Holmes and Kelsey Lang scored 12 apiece, and Ariel Atkins had 11.

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Texas (2-2) will have a better gauge of its place in the women’s basketball hierarchy after upcoming games against No. 2 Connecticut, No. 3 South Carolina and No. 17 Tennessee.

People around the program believe that coach Karen Aston has assembled sufficient talent to surpass the 2015-16 team that finished 31-5, reaching the NCAA Tournament Elite Eight before losing to eventual champ Connecticut. But Texas already has lost at seventh-ranked Mississippi State and No. 11 Stanford.

By comparison, the Longhorns were 3-0 last November and December against top-15 teams. In 2014-15, when they reached the Sweet 16, the Horns were 3-0 against top-10 teams in early-season non-conference games.

Beatrice Attura led Northwestern State (3-1) with 15 points. She made four 3-point baskets and one three-point play — a layup and free throw.

The game was over by the second quarter, when the Longhorns completed a 30-0 push that began in the first period. Northwestern State failed to score for nearly 12 minutes. The Lady Demons converted just 4 of 20 shots in the half and committed 14 turnovers.

Wing player Jada Underwood, the least heralded of the Longhorns’ three freshmen, scored seven quick points during the 30-0 run. She finished with 10 points.

Khaleann Caron-Goudreau, a 6-4 sophomore who transferred to Texas from Vanderbilt and sat out last season, made her Longhorns debut after missing the first three games with a bruised knee. She played six minutes and grabbed one rebound.

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