DAYTONA BEACH, Fla.— The North Texas women's basketball team is off to its best start since the 2011-12 season after a 63-57 victory against Detroit Mercy on Friday afternoon in the San Juan Shootout.
Paced by Terriell Bradley's 22 points and freshman Lauren Holmes' 19, the Mean Green overcame a slow start to improve their record to 4-1.
"We just gutted it out and knocked free throws down," said coach Jalie Mitchell, who was an assistant under Karen Aston when UNT last started a season 4-1. "We got to the line 24 times and we got it done."
UNT made 19 of its 24 free throw attempts with Bradley making 11 of her 12.
The Mean Green had been struggling from the free throw line this season. They entered the game only making 57 percent of their free throws and had taken only 44 total attempts in the first four games.
UNT was held to 13 first quarter points, but it still was tied with the Titans at the end of the frame. UNT has played 20 quarters this season and has trailed at the end of one only once.
The Mean Green found some separation with clutch performances by Holmes and sophomore Adrianna Henderson.
Holmes began her college career with a 20-point performance in the season-opener, the most points scored by a Mean Green freshman in a debut. In the next three games, Holmes was limited to only 18 points total.
Friday, the 5-8 guard from Fayetteville, Arkansas, scored 19 points on 7-of-14 shooting and made three 3-pointers. She also had her fifth straight game with a steal as she ended the contest with three.
"Staying out of foul trouble was huge for me," Holmes said. "It felt good to finally get back into a groove and help the team with a couple big shots and rebounds."