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Golden Eagles clinch No. 2 OVC seed with win over TSU

Golden Eagles clinch No. 2 OVC seed with win over TSU

By Thomas Corhern, TTU Sports Information

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – When Tennessee Tech and Tennessee State met back in December, the contest was decided by a last-second heave from Gia Adams as time expired. When the two teams met Thursday night, the Golden Eagle women were determined not to see that happen again.

The Tech women looked like a team on a mission and used several runs to break away and never look back, collecting a 75-49 victory over Tennessee State.

With the win – combined with Murray State's loss to Belmont and Austin Peay's loss to SIUE – the  Golden Eagles (18-9, 13-4 Ohio Valley Conference) clinch the No. 2 seed in next week's OVC Basketball Championships in Evansville, Ind. Tech closes out the regular-season slate on Saturday as the Golden Eagles host UT Martin on Senior Night.

Tennessee State (11-17, 6-11 OVC) never led in the contest, but the Golden Eagles never gave them a chance. Tech roared out to an 11-2 lead before the first four minutes had ticked away, but the Tigers were able to get back within one at 16-15 at the media timeout in the second quarter. Tech closed out the half on a 20-8 run to go to the locker room up 36-23.

The Golden Eagles outscored TSU 23-11 in the third quarter, using a 9-for-11 effort at the free-throw line to pull further away, drawing nine fouls in the quarter. Mackenzie Coleman knocked down seven of eight tries at the charity stripe, while Anna Jones hit the other two. That led to a 16-3 run to close out the quarter, including a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from Maaliya Owens, to hold a 59-34 lead after three.

Tech was able to rest the starters early in the fourth quarter, giving the youngsters a chance to get valuable minutes against the Tigers, outscoring TSU 16-15 in the final 10 minutes to wrap up the victory.

Jones led the Golden Eagles in scoring, collecting 19 points on a 7-of-13 night from the field, while also shooting 5-of-6 from the free-throw line. She also had seven rebounds and two assists In the game.

Anna Walker picked up her first career double-double, scoring 12 points and pulling down 10 boards

Tech also had double-digit performances from Mackenzie Coleman (14 points), Megan Clark (11 points) and Maaliya Owens (13 points) and the Golden Eagles dished out 23 assists, led by six from Jada Guinn.

Tatyana Davis led the Tigers with 20 points on 9-of-22 shooting, the only TSU player in double-figures. Adams, who had been averaging 13.4 points in conference play, was held to nine points on 3-of-12 shooting, going 0-for-3 from beyond the arc.

TSU finished the game 17-of-56 from the field, 2-for-11 from 3-point range and 13-of-18 at the free-throw line. Tech was 25-of-58 from the floor, 10-for-22 from beyond the arc and 15-of-21 at the stripe.

Photo | Jim Dillon

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