Walker, Dixon dominate as Techsters beat UAB twice

Obviously, 2020 wasn’t a good number for a year.

But for Louisiana Tech’s Keiunna Walker and Amber Dixon, those numbers sure made for a good weekend in Birmingham.

Walker and Dixon each registered a pair of 20-plus point performances to lead the Lady Techsters (13-7, 8-6) to a weekend sweep over UAB (7-11, 2-10) at Bartow Arena.

Tech won the Friday matchup 75-51 behind 22 points and six rebounds by Walker and 20 points, 10 rebounds and five assists by Dixon.

They followed up that Saturday with two more stellar performances in the Lady Techsters 83-61 victory on the Blazers’ homecourt. Walker had 25 points and five rebounds while Dixon added 20 points and five boards.

“We worked a lot (on Keiunna’s midrange game) this week in practice,” said LA Tech coach Brooke Steohr. “She stayed really calm (on the jumpers) and they weren’t sped up. She was really, really good with that.

“She (scored 47 points this weeknd) while also guarding UAB’s leading scorer for the majority of the time. Walker had to expend a lot of energy on the defensive end of the floor, so I’m really proud of her effort.”

When Walker wasn’t scoring on the Blazers, her senior backcourt teammate Dixon was. The Arlington, Texas, native recorded her best scoring outputs of the year in back-to-back games against the Blazers, helping Tech win for the fifth time in six tries at Bartow Arena.

Dixon hit 15-of-24 field goals on the weekend and 9-of-11 free throws while adding 15 rebounds and seven assists.

“We started to see a lot of this from Amber last weekend,” said Stoehr. “This was a carryover to practice this week. She was really locked in mentally all week long. Just being aggressive. She was balanced. She had a very complete weekend. As a senior, that’s what you want as you run into your stretch run of conference play. It was a carryover from last weekend and this week’s practices.”

Tech recorded two of its top offensive performances on the year in the wins over UAB, shooting almost 50 percent from the field in the two games. The Lady Techsters also outrebounded the Blazers by double digits in both wins and committed just 12 total turnovers in the two wins.

Sophomore Anna Larr Roberson also had an impressive weekend. While battling UAB senior post Zakyia Weathersby – who entered the series averaging a double double with 14 points and 12 rebounds a game – Roberson outplayed her counterpart. Roberson had 11 points and nine rebounds on Friday and then responded with 17 points and eight boards on Saturday.

“(Zakyia) Weathersby is really solid and Anna Larr went right at her,” said Stoehr. “She was tired, and we went to her down the stretch. I give our guards a ton of credit. They got her in good spots and gave her the ball where she needed to get it. She kept some balls alive for us off of some offensive rebounds that extended possessions for us.

“That’s a lot to ask a post player to go defend a player like Weathersby inside and have her lay on you and then go make some key plays for you. We went to her quite a bit during the second half and down the stretch.”

The Lady Techsters return to action Friday and Saturday when they host East Division leader Middle Tennessee at the Thomas Assembly Center.


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