TYLER, TEXAS – The Patriots forced a season-high 31 turnovers and came away with a season-high 20 steals as they routed the Javelinas by a final score of 81-43.
The first quarter set the tone for the entire contest as the Patriots ran out to an 18-1 lead through the first 6:41 of the contest. Spearheading that effort with eight of those points was Montse Gutierrez and four more came from Tina Machalova.
The UT Tyler defense proved to be suffocating throughout the period, as they held Texas A&M International to just 1-11 from the floor and 0-5 from deep. They held the Dustdevils to two separate scoring droughts of over three minutes and held the lead 23-7 after the first quarter.
The second quarter was nearly a carbon copy of the first for the Patriots as they ran out on a 16-0 run through the first 4:34 of the period. Gutierrez knocked down a pair of three pointers and Lovisa Hevinder added in five points of her own to lead the efforts for the Patriots.
The defensive effort for UT Tyler forced the Dustdevils into 16 turnovers in the first half. In the second quarter, the Patriots held Texas A&M International to just 3-14 shooting and 0-5 from beyond the arc. That led to the Dustdevils shooting just 16% from the field in that first half.
When the teams arrived back on the floor for the third period, the lead was 32 points in favor of UT Tyler. The Patriots used an 14-5 run over the first 5:35 of the third quarter to push the lead all the way out to 41 points. Four different Patriots chipped in on the run, including six points from Liah Davis.
By the end of the third quarter, the lead was out to 42 points after both teams traded baskets throughout the final few minutes of the period. That quarter was the Dustdevils  most successful period of the evening as they shot 44.44% from the floor and 60% from beyond the arc.
After a flurry of offense in the first two minutes of the fourth quarter, the Patriots held a 44 point lead. The Dustdevils closed out the contest on a 12-6 run themselves. The Patriots defense continued to hold steady, allowing just one basket for the final two and a half minutes of the contest.
The Patriots defense came away with 20 steals on the evening. That mark is tied for the seventh-most in school history. That same defense held Texas A&M International to 27.3% shooting, which is their lowest mark on the season.
The 38 point margin of victory for UT Tyler is their largest since a 46 point victory back on Jan. 6, 2018 over Sul Ross State.
Montse Gutierrez led the way on the evening with 24 points. Lovisa Hevinder chipped in an additional 14 to be the only two Patriots in double figures. That pair combined to be 8-17 from beyond the arc on the evening.
Kelsey Crouse collected a team-high seven rebounds, and Claudia Garrido Tribaldos added in a season-high six.
Crouse also dished out six assists on the evening to lead the Patriots. Tina Machalova also passed out another four.
10 different Patriots recorded a steal on the evening, and 11 Patriots recorded a point in the contest.
Next up the Patriots will host Texas A&M-Kingsville on Saturday. That game is scheduled to tip-off at 2 p.m. and will be the middle game of a three-game homestand.
Following that contest, the Patriots will battle it out against Texas Woman’s on Monday. That game is a makeup of a postponed contest from Dec. 31. That game is scheduled to tip-off at 5 p.m. inside the Herrington Patriot Center.