APSU Sports Information
Edwardsville, IL – Austin Peay State University (APSU) women’s basketball team battled valiantly, but were defeated on a last-second shot by SIU Edwardsville, 69-68, Thursday, at the Valadabene Center.
The Governors (7-9, 2-3 OVC) used a 13-0 run to close out the third quarter, but fell just shy of their first road win of the season.
The Govs could not shake off their slow starts from last week, as the Cougars (8-8, 3-2 OVC) jumped off to a quick 12-2 lead.
The Govs started 1-of-6 from the field until Gabby Gregory hit a three out of a timeout to break the run.
SIUE started out red hot, hitting their first eight of 11 shots from the field. Most of the shots were around the basket after breaking the full-court pressure the Govs were employing. The Govs settled down into the game and cut the lead to just seven with a couple more shots falling. SIUE was led by center Sydney Bauman, who had 10 points and five rebounds in the first quarter alone.
Both teams started out slow in the period, with SIUE scoring the only two points of the second quarter’s opening minutes. However, the Govs started to find their groove around midway through the quarter, sparked by freshman Maggie Knowles. Knowles hit a beautiful fadeaway hook shot and then followed it up with a corner three-pointer to cut the SIUE lead to five.
The Govs hit their next six shots from the field, but unfortunately for the Govs, SIUE did the same. APSU was able to force a couple more turnovers in their hot stretch, limiting the possessions SIUE had. Kasey Kidwell nailed a three of her own before Nieja Crawford cut the lead to just one point with a three off an Arielle Gonzalez-Varner offensive rebound.
Bauman, quiet for the most of the second quarter, rattled off two quick buckets combined with a Jay’Nee Alston three to give SIUE a seven-point lead at halftime.
Brandi Ferby got the Govs to a good start with a corner three, but SIUE went on another 12-2 run to lead by 13, forcing a Govs timeout. The Govs recollected during the break, going on a quick 7-0 run to whittle the lead down to six.
A Keisha Gregory three-pointer cut the lead to just three as SIUE was clearly stunned. Gregory, who recorded a career-high six steals, then stole a pass late in the quarter and found Gonzalez-Varner who tied the game at 53, which is how the quarter would end. The Govs forced six SIUE turnovers and allowed no points over the final five minutes of the third quarter, closing on a 13-0 run.
The Cougars responded, taking a two-point lead before Knowles hit a monster three-pointer to give the Govs the lead, 66-65 with 2:25 to go. The Cougars responded to go back up one before forcing a turnover on the next Govs possession, but threw the ball out of bounds, returning the ball back to the Govs with 30 seconds to go.
After Bauman blocked a shot with 18 seconds left, coach David Midlick called a timeout and drew up a perfect play, as Knowles found Gregory on the in-bounds pass to give the Govs a 68-67 lead with 15 seconds left.
SIUE called timeout and then Allie Troeckler, who was kept quiet the whole night, drove through the Govs defense and released a shot from just outside the free-throw line that went in with four seconds left. Knowles took the in-bounds pass and did not panic, using the time efficiently and creating a decent shot but it hit off the right side of the rim and the Cougars held on for the win, 69-68.
The Govs fall to 2-3 in the OVC and are still looking for their first road win.
Keisha Gregory has now scored in double figures in seven straight games.
Gregory also recorded a career-high six steals.
Every Gov player who saw action scored in the game.
The Govs had their second best shooting percentage on the road this season, shooting 43.4 percent from the field.
The Govs had their lowest rebounding total of the season, grabbing just 19 total boards.
The Cougars came in shooting 63 percent from the free-throw line, but shot over 93 percent tonight.
APSU Head Coach David Midlick’s Musings
On the start
“It was another slow start for the third straight game and we came out and dug ourselves a 10-point hole, came back, 13-point hole in the third, came back again and took the lead. Once again, I am extremely proud of our team, there’s no quit in them whatsoever. We just have to find a way to come out that way.”
On the game overall
“We did not rebound the ball well, with only eight defensive rebounds. I thought we were a little more aggressive boxing out in the second half, we attacked on offense, and our press was very good in the second half, but I give Troeckler and them credit. We switched to a defense they only saw twice the entire game and she made a play by going to the basket right at the end.”
Next Up for APSU
The APSU Govs look to rebound at Eastern Illinois, 1:00pm, Saturday, January 19th.