Clarksville, TN – Just like last year, McKendree visited the Dunn Center for a date with the Austin Peay State University (APSU) men’s basketball team and gave the Govs a fight.
And just like last year, Terry Taylor hung up more than 30 points, proving once again that simply having the senior from Bowling Green Kentucky on the roster is a difference-maker for the Govs.
Taylor had another of his routinely fantastic showings and the APSU Govs took down the Bearcats in an 82-68 decision, Monday night.
For a team that had seen some struggles from beyond the arc early in the 2020-21 season, a welcome sight for Austin Peay State University was Reginald Gee and Terry Taylor both getting threes to drop in the opening minutes en route to a 12-4 lead for the Govs.
Making his first start in over a year, Gee was active in the opening minutes as was true freshman Tai’Reon Joseph in his first appearance in the lineup.
McKendree hung tough against the Govs through the early part of the half, with the game tied at 15 at the 11:45 mark and briefly led at the halfway point in the first half. But a Taylor bucket and Mike Peake slam brought the Govs back ahead, and Austin Peay State University would outscore McKendree 25-18 over the final 9:25 of the half, with Taylor providing a dozen of those points and Alec Woodard capping the effort with a three just ahead of the halftime horn.
Out of halftime, Austin Peay State University extended the lead into double digits thanks to an 8-2 run highlighted by another Taylor three-pointer and it looked like Govs had begun to pull away.
The plucky Bearcats refused to go quietly; after the Austin Peay State University lead extended to 13 points, a quick 7-0 McKendree run cut the deficit to six before a thunderous Elton Walker dunk brought the Bearcat scoring burst to an end. Walker’s slam started an 18-9 APSU run that put the game away for good.
Taylor didn’t reach the heights he enjoyed in last season’s meeting with McKendree, when he nearly hung 40 on the Bearcats; he would settle for 31 points and eight rebounds instead. He also didn’t need to bear much of the scoring burden, with Joseph hanging up 20 points in his first start and Gee chipping in with 13 and five boards.
The final margin was 14 points. Austin Peay State University outscored McKendree by 12 (40-28) on points in the paint.
Austin Peay State University has started the season 4-2 for the first time since 2016.
Joseph has quickly blossomed into a solid performer for the Govs; in his last three games, the Baton Rouge native is averaging 12.7 points and 2.7 three-pointers while hitting 53.9 percent (14-for-26) from the floor.
Taylor’s 31 points were the most by a Gov since January 23rd, 2020 against Tennessee State and the first 30-spot put up by a Gov this season; it also marked the 13th time in his APSU career he’s reached 30 points in a game. Unfortunately, he saw his streak of double-doubles snapped at seven games.
Taylor, Joseph and Walker shot a combined 68.6 percent (24-for-35) from the floor; the rest of the Govs managed just a 33.3 percent (8-for-24) showing from the floor.
In all four wins this season, the Govs have surrendered fewer than 70 points.
Gee is averaging 12.0 points, 2.7 three-pointers and 3.3 rebounds the last three games.
Austin Peay State University has earned more second-chance points than its opponent in all six games this season, with a 10-9 tally against the Bearcats.
The APSU Governors home winning streak extended to 18 games.
Milestone Watch—Career: Terry Taylor passed Adrian Henning for eighth all-time with 106 career starts.
Milestone Watch—OVC: Taylor moved into sole possession of 16th all-time in Ohio Valley Conference history in career scoring with 2,048 points, passing Murray State’s Howie Crittenden (1952-56) and Tennessee Tech’s Kevin Murphy (2008-12) at 2,019 each. Up next: Murray State’s Isaiah Canaan (2009-13) at 2,050 points.
Coaching Quotables with APSU Head Coach Matt Figger
On the overall performance
“There are a lot of messages, and right now none of them are very positive. We’re not a very good basketball team right now. The turnovers show it. We don’t play with cohesiveness and put a lot of stress on our defense. It was another game where we gave up a lot of points off turnover to keep an opponent in the game. When we have a set, five-on-five defense, we’re pretty solid. It’s the careless turnovers, and if you throw a bad shot or two in there with that, it deflates us as a team.”
“I was really pleased for him. We’ve got to find somebody produce points, and that’s the one thing we haven’t been able to do consistently.”
McKendree 68, Austin Peay 82
Up Next for APSU Men’s Basketball
We’ll see you right back here in less than 24 hours as the Austin Peay State University Governors turn around and host Florida A&M in a 7:30pm tip in the Dunn Center as the second half of a non-conference doubleheader.