APSU Women’s Basketball
Clarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University women’s basketball team begins a seven-game road swing when it meets Valparaiso in a 5:00pm, Friday contest in the Preseason Women’s NIT Consolation Rounds hosted by Lamar in Beaumont, Texas.
The Lady Govs return to the road following a 74-60 loss to Middle Tennessee, Tuesday. Austin Peay trailed by 22 points at halftime but closed within nine points early in the second half before yielding by the 14-point final margin. Junior Whitney Hanley led the Lady Govs in scoring (18), rebounding (five), assists (five) and steals (four) in 37 minutes of action.Valparaiso has not played since losing at DePaul, 84-53, in its first-round WNIT contest, last Friday. Junior Betsy Adams led the Crusaders with 15 points – all from beyond the three-point arc where she was 5-of-9.
Sophomore Skyler Gick came off the bench to add seven points, five rebounds and seven assists.
Next Up For The Lady Govs
Austin Peay will conclude its Preseason Women’s NIT action with a contest against either Lamar or Utah Valley. The losers of Friday’s contests will meet in a 1:00pm, Saturday contest. The winners of Friday’s contests will meet in a 3:00pm, Saturday affair.
About Austin Peay
The Lady Govs have won the last two Ohio Valley Conference women’s basketball tournament crowns, but enters 2010-11 seeking to replace the output from the loss of its leading scorer and leading rebounder from last season.
Junior forward Jasmine Rayner, who finished second in both scoring and rebounding last season, was named to the Preseason All-OVC squad.
Outside the lane, the Lady Govs will rely on its other two returning starters – junior Whitney Hanley and senior Brooke Faulkner, who were fourth and fifth in scoring last season.
The rest of the Lady Govs starting five will have to be filled from last season’s bench that combined made just 34 starts last season. In addition, last season’s bench combined to play just 2172 total minutes, averaging 65 minutes per game, or less than a third of a game.
Austin Peay added three newcomers to this season’s roster – early signees Shyra Brown and Nicole Olszewski as well as walk-on Lauren Yarbrough. Olszewski will have her opportunities at point guard this season and has averaged 14.5 minutes played in their first two contests. Brown will miss the first part of the season due to injury.
APSU’s preseason slate will provide plenty of challenges as they have non-conference tilts against Purdue, Middle Tennessee, Chattanooga, Bowling Green and Duquesne – which all reached the postseason last year – in addition to Big East power Pittsburgh.
Quickly About The Lamar Consolation Round Squads
Valparaiso was picked ninth in the preseason Horizon League poll after a 9-21 record last season. The Crusaders return eight letterwinners from last season’s team, including three starters. Kelly Watts led Valparaiso in rebounding last season, averaging 5.9 rebounds per game one year after transferring from Eastern Michigan.
Lamar was picked to win the Southland Conference’s East Division after winning the division and tournament titles last season. Senior Jenna Plumley was a first-team All-SLC preseason pick and sophomore Kalis Loyd was named to the second team. The Cardinals lost to West Virginia, 58-43, in the opening round of last season’s NCAA Tournament.
Utah Valley is one of the newest NCAA Division I members, completing a seven-year transition from the junior college ranks last season. The Wolverines were picked to finish fifth in the seven-team Great West Conference. Junior Jenna Johnson was a second team All-GWC selection. The Wolverines do not have a senior on this season’s roster.