APSU Sports Information
St. Petersburg, FL – If you still want to doubt Austin Peay State University (APSU) men’s basketball team after it earned its vengeance with an 88-75 win against Campbell, running its winning streak to five games, ask yourself this:
What will happen once the Governors are actually fully healthy?
Because after a convincing 13-point win against the Fighting Camels, it’s becoming clear that this team—winners of five straight, four by double figures—has a chance to do some pretty special things when league play opens up to start the 2019 calendar.
Austin Peay (7-4) trailed for all of one possession, less than two minutes into the contest. As the Govs were hitting 11 of their first 15 shots—especially seniors Zach Glotta and Chris Porter-Bunton, who combined for 15 of Austin Peay’s first 17 points—Campbell (5-6) was unable to get off on solid footing.
The Govs paid particular attention to Chris Clemons, the nation’s leading scorer and a player who had poured in 34 points the last time the two teams met. He missed his first four attempts from the floor and although he scored 12 points in the first half, he shot just 5-of-14 from the floor in the process.
Meanwhile, the Govs were controlling the glass (Campbell earned just two offensive rebounds in the first half), harassing the Fighting Camels into miscues (nine first-half turnovers) and generally looking like the dominant team at all times. The result saw the Govs take a 38-23 lead into halftime at the McArthur Center.
The Fighting Camels scored seven unanswered points to open the second half and looked poised to give the Govs a fight over the final 20 minutes. However, Austin Peay answered that rally with an 18-7 run of their own to take the game firmly in hand.
The Governor advantage would reach 20 points with less than seven minutes to go, but a 14-4 Campbell run had the Fighting Camels within 10 with three minutes to go. However, senior Zach Glotta’s dagger three-pointer—the last of his treys on the day—put the Govs back ahead by 13 and Campbell never truly rallied from there.
Rather than one big advantage, Austin Peay was slightly better than Campbell at myriad things on Friday. The Govs outshot the Fighting Camels (50.0 percent to 44.6 percent); they committed fewer turnovers (12 to 17); they outrebounded them (40-34); scored more points in the paint (38-26), second chance (9-4) and from the bench (29-18).
The Govs are 4-0 to start December for the first time since 2009-10.
He also led the Govs in rebounding for the 10th time in his Austin Peay career. He also made nine free-throws—a career-high and most by a Governor in 2018-19. He also went over the 700-point barrier as a Governor—at 718 points in his career, he would need to average 14.1 points over the final 20 games to reach 1,000 in his career; he’s averaging 14.5 points over his last six games.
The Govs are shooting 52.0 percent (130-of-250) over the last four games.
Austin Peay is averaging a 49.0-21.3 advantage in the paint over the last three games.
Grad transfer Jabari McGhee reached double-figures in three straight games for the first time as a Gov, finishing with 10 points.
The Govs are now 5-0 when leading at the half this season.
Glotta finished with a career-high 22 points, eclipsing his previous high by one. He set personal career-highs and Austin Peay season-highs in three-pointers made (six) and attempted (13).
The win is Austin Peay’s first in the state of Florida since 1982 (Bethune-Cookman, December 1st).
Over the last six games, Austin Peay has accrued a plus-44 turnover advantage.
Austin Peay is plus-52 in rebounding margin since the start of December; on average, the Govs have pulled down 14.5 offensive rebounds in the last four games.
The victory is Austin Peay’s first against a Big South foe since 2013, when the Govs took down then-Big South member Liberty—tomorrow’s opponent.
Sophomore Dayton Gumm scored 12 points and equaled his career-high with seven rebounds.
Coaching Quotables with APSU Head Coach Matt Figger
On Campbell’s continued comeback attempts
“We’re an immature team; we cannot get out of our own way sometimes. We’ve won five in a row and I’m grateful for that, but the way we played the second half… if we try to play like that tomorrow, we’ll get run out of the building.”
On Glotta and Porter-Bunton
“We needed everything we could get from both of those guys tonight and they delivered. One thing I knew about Campbell, they weren’t going away. As well as we played in the first half, our lack of focus was completely unacceptable.”
Up Next for APSU Govs
It’ll be a quick turnaround for Austin Peay, which plays Liberty for the St. Pete Shootout title. Tipoff is scheduled for 1:30pm (CT).