By Reily Chestnut
We know how paying on the road can be quite challenging to the minds of young athletes. Well, senior guard Toshua Leavitt seems to be just as comfortable shooting in GSU Sports Arena as she does in Strahan. The star scored a career-high 35 points with 9 threes to lead Texas State to a 69-60 win over Georgia State.
Coming off a rare win over Georgia Southern where the majority of her shots weren’t outside the arc, Leavitt was cooking up her specialty this time around. In the face of fatigue due to the quick turnaround the team had to endure after travelling 209 miles from Statesboro to Atlanta, the start of this game saw both teams fighting to get their legs underneath them. Good news: the Bobcats defense held down the Panthers, including leading scorers Jayda Lewis and Walnatia Wright, for most of the game. The Panthers shot 37 percent overall against the shifting defense thrown their way by the Bobcats. Meanwhile, Leavitt feasted against the Panthers’ zone defense to exploit the wings for her career performance. But, she wasn’t alone in breaking a career mark today in Atlanta.
Third year guard Brooke Holle has always been the blue collar player that keeps the ‘Cats in games even when her shot doesn’t stroke. Since half of the 24 shots that Texas State put inside the cylinder were treys, Georgia State’s defense was caught scrambling on the perimeter, and Holle had a field day off the rim. The junior collected a career-high 14 rebounds while rebounding from her struggles in Statesboro with 14 points for her second double-double this season. All in another day’s work for the scrapper out of Austin.
There’s just something about conference play that can make stars like Leavitt and Holle shine brighter. When the minutes start to shrink for role players and the starters take more time on the court, it’s easy to understand why the Bobcats have started 2-0 in SBC play after their road trip through Georgia. They have impact players like Leavitt and Holle to carry the load while the team plays defense like a unit.
The victory brings the Bobcats back to .500 at 7-7 following their perfect weekend in the Peach State. Now the team will get to settle back home for five days before opening conference at home next Thursday night against Coastal Carolina. The more time to hunker down the better, in my opinion. The last couple matchups between the Chanticleers and the Bobcats have been physically grounded with victory usually going to the team that held the opposing offense down more so than not. Catch the action on KTSW 89.9 at 7 o’clock!
Featured photo by Texas State Athletics.