Austin Peay vs. Belmont
Saturday, December 31st, 2016 | 12:00pm CT
Clarksville, TN | Dunn Center
Clarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University women’s basketball team will close the book on 2016 with a New Year’s Eve contest against defending Ohio Valley Conference Tournament champions Belmont at noon, Saturday, in the Dunn Center.The Governors opened the OVC slate with an 81-71 loss to Morehead State, Thursday, featuring an impressive fourth quarter comeback after trailing by as much as 25 points.
Junior center Brianne Alexander sparked the rally by scoring all 10 of her points in the period, while the Govs had solid performances off the bench from the likes of freshman forward Arielle Gonzalez-Varner, who posted career-highs in points (six) and rebounds (five), and junior forward Sydney Gooch (seven points, nine boards).
APSU began the game on a 9-0 run, led by senior center Tearra Banks totaling a double-double by halftime. Banks finished the game with 15 points and 12 rebounds, the 13th double-double of her career.
In addition, the Govs scored 29 points in the final period, the most scored in a single quarter this season. APSU also showcased improvements in both rebounds, controlling the glass 49-35, and went to the free throw line a season-high 39 times.
The Opponent: Belmont
The defending OVC Tournament champions, Belmont opened its new conference campaign with a 77-58 victory over Eastern Illinois, Thursday. Four different players recorded 14 or more points in the contest as the Bruins shot 49 percent as a team.
For the season, sharpshooter Darby Maggard leads the team in scoring at 13.7 points per game, but it’s her 46 percent clip from behind the three-point arch which tops the OVC. Kylee Smith ranks just behind Maggard in scoring at 13.6 ppg, while Sally McCabe sits at 10.9 ppg and 7.5 rebounds per contest.
Head coach Cameron Newbauer is in his fourth year at Belmont, who last season helped lead the Bruins to a 24-9 record which included a 95-63 rout of Eastern Kentucky in the OVC title game.
Last Time Against the Bruins
Austin Peay nearly handed the Bruins their only home loss when the teams last met on Jan. 16 last season, but Belmont held on for an 88-82 win in Nashville. Tiasha Gray dropped a career-best 38 points, while Tearra Banks added 20 off the bench.
- Dominant in the paint. With her 15 points against Morehead State, Banks reached 1,087 career points, and is now 31 points away from tying Carrie Daniels for 14th place on the all-time scoring ranks.
- Rates climbing the charts. Rates is now 13 blocks away from tying Ashley Haynes for third-most in program history, currently sitting at 106.
- Squad depth. Against the Eagles, Austin Peay’s bench accounted for 39 of the team’s 71 points as 12 different players scored.
- Defend the Dunn. The Govs are 5-2 on their home court this season, and 14-5 in the David Midlick era.
Follow the APSU Govs
Be sure to follow all the Austin Peay women’s basketball action at www.LetsGoPeay.com and the official Facebook page of Austin Peay Athletics. In addition, live play-by-play coverage can be found on Twitter (@AustinPeayWBB), while fans can watch the game on www.OVCDigitalNetwork.com