The win improved the Lady Demons’ record to 3-5 on the season while Wiley College, a NAIA team out of the Red River Athletic Conference, fell to 6-3.
James scored 14 of her points in the first half to lead the Lady Demons to a 46-21 lead at the break.
“I thought we did a really good job of fronting them, especially in the first half,” said head coach Jennifer Graf.
“We knew they’d come out and try to dictate the tempo of the game and try to get us to play their style, but we stopped that right away.”
Ronikka Drake added a career-best 17 points and Tashana Triplett scored 12 points - the first of her career in sinking double-digits.
The Lady Demons connected on 46.8 percent of their shots from the floor after hitting 36 of 77. That included a 51.4 percent (19 of 37) in the second half, an improvement by a wide margin from the 17 percent shooting the team suffered against SMU in the last outing.
NSU also knocked down 10 of 22 for 45.5 percent from 3-point range, a season best.
“I’m proud of the way we came out and executed today,” said Graf. “We did a good job of knocking down our open layups and our short-range jumpers. And also did well on the boards.”
The Lady Demons outrebounded Wiley by a 49-40 margin marking the fourth straight game NSU has outrebounded its opponent.
NSU jumped out to an 8-0 lead before Wiley got on the board and cut the deficit to 8-5 after a layup by Latika Smith with 17:01 to play in the half.
The Lady Demons followed that with back-to-back 3-pointers by Ronikka Drake and Meredith Graf, and a layup and free throw from Jasmine Upchurch to give NSU a double-digit lead at 17-5 with 14:25 to play, a margin the team would not relinquish.
Tashana Smith knocked down a trey at the buzzer to give NSU its 46-21 halftime lead.
In the second half, the closest Wiley would get would be 20 points with the latest coming with 1:51 to play, but the Lady Demons got consecutive traditional 3-point plays from Drake and Triplett to nip the Wildcat run.
Northwestern State will next be in action next Friday and Saturday when it takes on Florida A&M and Alcorn State at the Southeastern Louisiana Classic.