Tech falls by slimmest of margins at Austin Peay

Tech falls by slimmest of margins at Austin Peay

By Layne Weitzel, TTU Sports Information

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Tech's previous game against Austin Peay back in January was decided by four points and resulted in a Golden Eagle win.

Tonight's result was even closer, but Tech wasn't so fortunate this time.

The Golden Eagles fell at Austin Peay on Thursday night by a score of 53-52, evening the two teams' series this season. Both games were decided by a total of five points.

Tonight's game was also Tech's third decided in the final seconds of the game in the calendar year alone. APSU's Keisha Gregory, the second-best free-throw shooter in the conference who entered the game with an average of 92.9 percent, sank two free throws with just five seconds left in the game to put the Governors ahead 53-52. That would remain the final score, as Tech missed a last-ditch 3-pointer as time expired.

Eighteen of Austin Peay's points came from its record-setting free-throw performance. The Governors (15-11, 8-7 OVC) made all 18 of their free throws tonight, marking the program's most free throws made while still going 100 percent from the line. Tech struggled from the charity stripe, making just 64.3 percent of their shots (9-of-14).

The Golden Eagles had trouble overall offensively, putting up their second-lowest point total in conference play this season.

"In order to win consistently and to win on the road, you have to be able to put points on the board," said head coach Kim Rosamond. "We had eight offensive boards in the first half, and we finished the game with two. When you're struggling from the floor, you've got to be able to get extra possessions."

The Golden Eagles did have two players score in double-figures. Jordan Brock totaled 13 points and three rebounds, and Yaktavia "Shug" Hickson followed with 12 points and four rebounds.

Brock's three 3-pointers to pace all players put her at 62 for the season, becoming the first Tech player to total 60 in a season since then-senior Lashay Davis made 60 back in the 2012-13 season. The freshman is the fourth-best 3-point shooter in the conference, averaging 2.4 per game.

Tech was already in a bind not even two minutes into the first quarter, as MacKenzie Coleman was called for two fouls. She played just a minute of the first half and totaled just 16 minutes in the game, well under her average of 27.3 minutes. Coleman managed six points, a rebound, two assists and a block before fouling out, and still needs just five more blocks to break Tech's single-season freshman record of 51.

Tech did force 23 APSU turnovers, which converted into 26 points. Austin Peay had previously averaged 15.6 turnovers per game.

Tech will play its final road game of the regular-season on Saturday, Feb. 17 at 5 p.m. CT against Murray State (9-17, 5-10 OVC). The Racers took their first meeting with Tech back in January by a score of 72-63.
Photo by Thomas Corhern, TTU Sports Information