(New Orleans, LA) The Dillard Lady Bleu Devils lost to the Xavier Gold Nuggets 59-53 on Saturday night on the Battlefield in Dent Hall at the Annual Allstate Sugar Bowl Bleu Devil Classic. It was also senior night for Lady Bleu Devils' Ariel Mitchell and Lauren Daniel.
Both teams locked in and played intense defense in what became a defense struggle from start to finish. The Gold Nuggets (12-2, 22-8) held a 3-point lead at 21-18 with just under three minutes left in the first half and held a 27-23 advantage at the intermission.
The Gold Nuggets kept the Lady Bleu Devils (9-5, 13-11) at arm's length for much of the second half by maintaining an 8-point lead. The Gold Nuggets led by as many as twelve before the Lady Bleu Devils mounted a furious comeback to close to within 3-points at 48-45 with four minutes remaining in the game. The Lady Bleu Devils had an opportunity to tie the game with twelve seconds remaining, but the shot bounced off the back of the rim. The Gold Nuggets sealed the 59-53 victory from the free-throw line.
Jazzmin Smith led the Lady Bleu Devils with 15 points and 7 rebounds. Senior Ariel Mitchell had 14 points and 3 rebounds in her final home game for the Lady Bleu Devils. Senior Lauren Daniel finished with 4 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists in her regular season finale.
The Lady Bleu Devils will now focus on the GCAC Conference Tournament in Jacksonville, Florida. Tournament play begins on Thursday, March 1st. Seedings and times are TBD.