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APSU Lady Govs look for road win at Eastern Illinois

Austin Peay (7-17/5-6 OVC) at Eastern Illinois (2-21/1-10 OVC)

Wednesday, February 10th, 2016 | 5:15pm CT
Charleston, IL | Lantz Arena

Austin Peay State University Lady Govs - APSUCharleston, IL – A four-game Ohio Valley Conference road trip will come to an end when Austin Peay State University women’s basketball team meets Eastern Illinois in a 5:15pm, Wednesday, contest at Lantz Arena.

The Governors have been unable to shake their season-long road woes during the current road trip, losing each of the first three games.

Austin Peay Women's Basketball play final road game at Eastern Illinois, Wednesday. (APSU Sports Information)
Austin Peay Women’s Basketball play final road game at Eastern Illinois, Wednesday. (APSU Sports Information)

In its last outing, Austin Peay suffered a 75-72 loss at Murray State, Wednesday, its second loss by three points or less during the road trip.

Now battling a four-game overall losing streak, APSU has fallen to 5-6 in OVC action, one-game ahead of ninth place Murray State (4-7).

Senior guard Tiasha Gray continued to lead Austin Peay during the road trip, finishing with 18 points despite missing the first half (coach’s decision) at Murray State. She is averaging 22 points and 6 rebounds per game in the trip’s three games. However, Gray has averaged just 2.0 assists per game, well below her 5.3 season assists average.

Behind Gray, no other Govs player is averaging more than 7.3 points per game during the road trip. With Gray accounting for more than 33 percent of APSU’s offense alone during the road trip. In addition she has been APSU’s leading rebounder, but the rebounding load has been spread out with five players posting double-digit rebound totals during the trip.

Eastern Illinois continues a three-game homestand that it opened with a 64-59 victory against Southeast Missouri, Saturday. It was the Panthers’ first OVC victory this season and snapped a 21-game losing streak that dated back to its season-opening win. Eastern Illinois won the game at the free-throw line, making 17-of-25 while Southeast Missouri made just 11 free throws.

Junior guard Phylicia Johnson had a big hand in Eastern Illinois’ comeback win against the Redhawks, scoring 15 of her game- and career-high 19 points in the fourth quarter. Her effort allowed the Panthers to recover from a 29-18 halftime deficit, scoring 46 points in the second half. It was the fifth time she has breached double-digit scoring territory this season – all in OVC action where she is averaging a team-best 9.9 points per game.

Wednesday’s contest will be the 43rd meeting between Austin Peay and Eastern Illinois. The Governors improved to 25-17 with its 80-45 win, January 23rd, which also was its third straight win in the series. In addition, APSU has won the last two meetings at Lantz Arena, including last season’s 66-63 victory that saw Gray post a 32-point, 11-rebound double-double performance.

The More You Know

APSU Tearra BanksBank on Banks
Junior center Tearra Banks is in rarified air at the season’s halfway point, entering Saturday’s game ranked 8th among Division I players in field goal percentage (59.9). Only one player in APSU history has finished a season shooting better than 60 percent – Gerlonda Hardin, who accomplished the feat all four years she played at Austin Peay and finished her career shooting 61.8 percent from the floor.

Gray Milestone Watch Continues
Senior guard Tiasha Gray became only the fifth APSU women’s basketball player to reach the 1,500-point plateau with her 27-point performance at East Tennessee, December 21st. She enters the final five regular-season games of her career within sight of three career milestones – 1,800 points, 500 assists and 300 steals:

APSU Tiasha GrayOVC Career Steals | Currently 5th (300)
Next: 302 by Connie Swift (TSU, 1992-97)

APSU Career Steals | Currently 1st (300)
Previous Record: 243 by Tracie Mason (1987-91)

APSU Career Points | Currently 5th (1,774)
Next: 1,805 by Shondra Maxwell (1986-90)

APSU Career Assists
Currently 3rd (484) | Next: 507 by Jeanne Hinchee (1978-82)

About the Lady Govs

Facing one of the nation’s toughest nonconference slates (25th ranked) took its toll early as APSU averaged just 59.3 points per game against its 11 Division I opponents. It has popped the lid on its offense in conference action, averaging 74.3 points per game and topping the 80-point barrier five times in its nine OVC games.

During the nonconference portion of the schedule, Gray and Banks scored over 50 percent of APSU’s points. However, that percentage has declined in OVC play, with the duo averaging just 43.1 percent of the team’s scoring.

About the Eastern Illinois Panthers

Eastern Illinois PanthersSince its 80-45 loss at Austin Peay, January 23rd, (its worst loss this season) Eastern Illinois has caused its next three opponents fits. EIU fell by just 10 points at Murray State then suffered only a 12 point loss at then league-leading SIU Edwardsville before orchestrating Saturday’s win against Southeast Missouri.

Freshman forward Halle Stull is averaging 15 points and 8.5 rebounds in her last two games off the bench, including a 19-point, 11-rebound double-double at SIUE. Junior forward Erica Brown notched her season’s fourth double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds against SEMO.

An Austin Peay Win Would

End its four-game losing streak… Move it back to .500 in OVC play this season (6-6)… Be its fourth-straight win against Eastern Illinois… Be its third-straight win at Lantz Arena.

Make David Midlick 8-17 overall and 6-6 in OVC play in his first season at Austin Peay and 53-33 in his third season as a head coach overall… Make the Govs 458-666 since 1976-77 and 234-336 in OVC action.

Broadcast Information

OVC Digital Network
Presented by Eastern Illinois Athletics

APSU Lady Govs on the Web

Live Video: www.OVCDigitalNetwork.com
Live APSU Audio: www.LetsGoPeay.com/Listen
Live Statistics: www.PeayStats.com

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