NATCHITOCHES, La. –JaMeisha Edwards poured in a career-high 28 points to lead the Lamar Lady Cardinals to an 84-79 win over host Northwestern State in a Southland Conference women's basketball game Saturday afternoon.

"JaMeisha stepped up big time for us," Lamar coach Robin Harmony said. "She was poised and in control."

Edwards needed to pick up her game because Lamar guard Gia Ayers was in foul trouble for most of the game, playing a season-low 23 minutes.

"I was ready," Edwards said. "We were all upset after Thursday's loss at SFA. I was determined to win this game."

Edwards was far from a one-person show Saturday for the Lady Cardinals (6-7 overall, 1-1 Southland). Dominique Edwards registered her fifth double-double of the season with 15 points and 10 rebounds, while Francesca Bellatin came off the bench to equal her career high with 10 points. Shauna Long had nine points off the bench, while Ayers had eight points and a team-high three assists.

"Any time you get a win on the road, it's big," Harmony said. "Obviously, we would have liked to start off conference play with two road wins, but we did a good job of bouncing back from that loss."

JaMeisha Edwards had 15 of her points in the first half as the Lady Cardinals built a 39-34 lead at intermission. Dominique Edwards came alive in the second half, collecting 12 points and eight rebounds over the final 20 minutes.

Northwestern State (8-6, 1-1) never led in the second half. The Lady Demons got to within one point early in the final period, but Lamar never squandered the lead.

Northwestern State had five players in double figures, led by Trudy Armstead with 18 points.

The Lady Demons held a 37-29 rebounding edge on Lamar, but the Lady Cardinals had just 11 turnovers as compared to 19 for the hosts.

Lamar returns home for a pair of Southland Conference games. The Lady Cardinals host Nicholls at 5:30 p.m. Thursday and McNeese State at 4 p.m. Jan. 11. Both games are the opening contest of a doubleheader, with the Lamar men's team playing in the nightcap.

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