HUNTSVILLE — A slow start could not derail the Sam Houston State women's basketball team Saturday afternoon at Johnson Coliseum.
The Bearkats overcame a double-digit deficit to knock off first-place Stephen F. Austin 63-55. Sam Houston State (14-6) moved into a three-way tie atop the Southland Conference standings at 9-2 with the Lady Jacks (16-4) and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.
Faith Cook led SHSU with 16 points and was 3 for 5 from long range. Kaylee Jefferson chipped in nine points, Jennifer Oramas had eight and Jaylonn Walker scored seven.
La'Sha Haynes pulled down a career-high 14 rebounds.
The Bearkats led by as many as 17 points at 45-28 on a layup by Kiera McKinney with 3:40 to go in the third quarter.
Sam Houston State shot 42 percent from the floor, and a blistering 55 percent (6 for 11) from 3-point range. The Kats also won the rebounding battle 35-30 and forced 24 turnovers.
The Bearkats found themselves in an early hole. The Lady Jacks jumped out to an 11-0 lead in the first four minutes.
Sam Houston State righted the ship and closed the opening quarter in an 8-2 run capped by a second-chance basket by Jefferson to pull within 13-8.
The second quarter was all Bearkats. They shot 50 percent from the floor and were 3 for 4 from behind the arc, including a 3 by Cook in the final minute to send SHSU into the break up 30-26.