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Austin Peay State University Men’s Basketball goes cold in second half in loss to Murray State

APSU Men's BasketballMurray, KY – Disappointed. It’s the only word that fits. The Austin Peay State University (APSU) basketball team fought, and fought. And fought some more. One thing you absolutely can’t knock was the hustle, because those guys tried, and they tried all over the place.

Austin Peay State University Basketball freshman #5 Jordyn Adams had 27 points in loss to Murray State Saturday night. (APSU Sports Information)
Austin Peay State University Basketball freshman #5 Jordyn Adams had 27 points in loss to Murray State Saturday night. (APSU Sports Information)

But the shots wouldn’t fall for APSU, which saw an extended second-half cold spell ultimately doomed the Govs to a 75-61 defeat at the CFSB Center, Saturday, bringing an end to the regular season and dropping the Govs to the No. 3 seed at next week’s Ohio Valley Conference Men’s Basketball Championship in Evansville.

The first half brought out the best in both teams and was an exhibition of why they found themselves in a winner-take-all battle for a share of the league title. Jordyn Adams was electric for the Govs, pouring in 18 points just in the first half, including a trio of three-pointers from well beyond the college line. His final trey of the half put the Govs ahead with 5:21 to play in the opening period.

The Racers eked out a three-point lead at halftime by closing the frame on a 15-11 run, including a trio of three-pointers. At 36-33 at the break, the game had all the trappings of another classic in the series.

Through the first six-plus minutes of the second half, things were pretty dire for the Govs. To start the second half, Austin Peay State University missed four of five shots, committed three turnovers and compounded the problem with four fouls, including Terry Taylor’s third.

But Adams plugged the road crowd back in with a drive to the hoop for his 20th point and Austin Peay State University began to cut into a deficit that had entered double figures.

The game turned irrevocably at the 8:18 mark. That’s when Taylor picked up No. 4, a foul call that arrested any development the Govs had made in cutting the deficit to six. Soon, an Anthony Smith three-point play had the Racer lead back to 10, where it would unfortunately linger for most of the remainder of the night.

Taylor and Eli Abaev were both saddled with foul trouble for much of the second half, a difficulty at any time and made especially so since the duo combined for 24 of Austin Peay State University’s 32 boards on the night. 

The APSU Govs cut it to single-digits one more time on a quick 5-0 run with just under two minutes to play, but Tevin Brown scored five of Murray State’s final seven points himself to put the game away for the hosts.

 


The Difference

Second-half shooting. The Govs hit 39.1 percent from the floor, 22.2 percent from three and 57.1 percent at the line. The Racers were at 59.1 percent, 42.9 percent and 58.8 percent on those same splits.

APSU Notably

This was Austin Peay State University’s first loss on Leap Day since February 29th, 2012 against Jacksonville State.

The APSU Govs outscored Murray State 15-2 in second-chance opportunities, and are have outscored opponents 14.7-to-4.7 in second-chance points in their last three losses.

Austin Peay State University’s three bench points were the fewest by the Governors reserves since being shutout at Tennessee Tech, January 9th.

Adams finished with 27 points, on a team season-high 23 shots.

Abaev finish with 10 points and a career-high 14 rebounds, his fourth double-double in the last five games. He’s averaging 9.6 rebounds over his last 11 contests.

Antwuan Butler finished with 10 points, his first double-digit outing since February 8th at Belmont.

Taylor’s 30-game double-figure scoring streak was snapped; he finished with nine points and 10 boards in 35 minutes, his shortest outing since January 23rd.

Freshman Alec Woodard made his second career start, playing 23 minutes.

Milestone Watch—Career
Taylor took sole possession of fifth all-time in blocked shots, with 107.

Milestone Watch—Season
Taylor now has 336 rebounds this season, the fourth-highest single-season tally in program history. As for Adams, he passed Taylor for the second-highest freshman season scoring total in program history, with 551 points, and took possession of first all-time in threes by a freshman with 58.

Next Up For Austin Peay State University

That’s all in the past now. Thirty-one regular season games yielded 20 wins and the No. 3 seed in the OVC Tournament, hosted at the Ford Center in Evansville. The Austin Peay State University basketball team will tip it up in the 8:30pm, Thursday, March 5th quarterfinal contest. Austin Peay State University will face the winner between sixth-seeded Eastern Illinois and No. 7 Jacksonville State.

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