Austin Peay (9-5 | 7-3 OVC) vs. Belmont (6-4 | 3-2 OVC)
Thursday, January 28th, 2021 | 4:30pm CT
Clarksville, TN | Dunn Center
Clarksville, TN – Austin Peay State University (APSU) women’s basketball is set to host the first of two in-state Ohio Valley Conference foes this week when they welcome Belmont to the Dunn Center on Thursday, January 28th, 2021. Tip-off is at 4:30pm.
After picking up back-to-back wins against Jacksonville State and Murray State, the Governors improved to 7-3 in OVC play and took command of third place in the conference standings.
Belmont has only played 5 conference games so far this season and Bruins sit in fifth place in the league with a 3-2 OVC record.
Following Thursday’s contest against Belmont, Austin Peay will host Tennessee State, Jan. 30, in the final game of Governors season-long five-game homestand. The Govs will be back out on the road next week when they travel to Eastern Kentucky, February 4th, and Morehead State, February 6th.
About the Belmont Bruins
After winning four-straight Ohio Valley Conference Tournament titles from 2016 to 2019, Belmont shared the league’s regular-season title last season, but fell to eventual-champion No. 3 seeded Southeast Missouri in the semifinals of the 2019-20 OVC Tournament.
This season Belmont was tabbed to finish second in both the OVC Coaches and SIDs Preseason Poll and the OVC Media Poll, the Bruins received one first-place vote in the media poll. Fourth-year head coach Bart Brooks returns ten letter winners, but just two starters, from a team that posted a 22-9 record overall and a 16-2 mark in the OVC last season.
Junior guard Jamilyn Kinney was a Second-Team All-OVC selection last season, she is the Bruins top-returning scorer (8.2 ppg) and is averaging 6.8 points per game this season. Kinney ranks fifth in the OVC in assists (3.5 apg) and is second in the league in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.8).
This season the trio of Destinee Wells (13.9 ppg), Conley Chinn (11.8 ppg), and Tuti Jones (11.7 ppg) lead the Bruins in scoring and rank 7th, 12th, and 13th in the OVC, respectively.
The reigning OVC Freshman of the Week, Wells ranks second in the OVC in assists (3.9 apg), free-throw percentage (89.2%), and steals (2.6 spg). Averaging 3.4 steals per game, Jones is the OVC leader in steals this season; she also ranks second in three-point percentage (41.7%) and third in three-pointers made (2.8 per game).
Belmont also leads the conference in turnover margin (+5.4), the Bruins force the most turnovers per game (19.9) in the OVC and only turn the ball over 14.7 times per game — which is the third-best mark in the league.
Austin Peay-Belmont Series History
This is the 21st meeting in a series that dates back to 1982; Austin Peay State University trails in the all-time series, 6-14.
Austin Peay State University squared off with Belmont three times last season and the final meeting featured a dozen lead changes, 9 ties, five minutes of overtime, and it just happened to be in the first round of the 2019-20 OVC Tournament. But the Governors came up just short, dropping an overtime-thriller to the Bruins, 76-73, on March 4, 2020, at the Ford Center in Evansville, Indiana.
Arielle Gonzalez-Varner led the Governors on the offensive end in her final game, scoring 20 points and shooting 64 percent from the floor. Ella Sawyer and current APSU graduate assistant Nieja Crawford each scored 10 points and grabbed 3 rebounds; Sawyer dished out a team-high 5 assists and Crawford posted 4 assists in her final game.
Myah LeFlore was the final Gov in double figures, scoring 14 points and matching her career-high with 2 three-pointers. D’Shara Booker led the APSU Govs on the glass, grabbing 9 rebounds and also chipping in 8 points.
Ellie Harmeyer led Belmont with a 27-point, 13-rebound double-double, she went 12-17 from the free-throw line. Maura Muensterman hit three three-pointers and scored 12 points for the Bruins, while Maddie Wright added 12 points and 8 rebounds.
After completing a season-long five-game road trip, Austin Peay State University is now amidst a season-long five-game homestand. The Govs won two of the first three games of the homestand and will host the final two games at the Winfield Dunn Center this week.
Austin Peay State University picked up its fourth-consecutive win against Murray State and its second-straight season sweep of the Racers on Monday, January 25th.
Nationally the APSU Governors rank 6th in three-pointers attempted (405), 8th in three-pointers made (127), and 21st in three-pointers per game (9.1) — they lead the OVC in three-pointers attempted/made and rank second in the league in three-pointers per game.
D’Shara Booker led the Governors with 18 points and was 9-9 from the floor last time out against Murray State.
Booker matched the Austin Peay State University single-game field goal percentage record (min. 8 made FG) by shooting a perfect 100% from the floor against the Racers.
Booker posted a 10-point, 10-rebound double-double against JSU, January 23rd, she is the first Gov since January 9th, 2020, to record a double-double and is the only current Governor to have recorded a double-double in their Austin Peay State University career.
Nationally Maggie Knowles ranks 9th in three-pointers per game (3.18), 20th in three-pointers attempted (99), and 23rd in three-pointers made (35) — she leads the OVC in three-pointers per game/attempted.
Brianah Ferby leads the OVC in steals (31) and ranks third in steals per game (2.21).
APSU Govs in the time of COVID-19
For the 2020-21 season, Austin Peay State University athletics will allow approximately 35 percent capacity in the Dunn Center for home basketball events. There will be no lower bowl seating for fans during the season. The lower level will be limited to players, coaches, and game-day support staff only.
Seats will be assigned to create a buffer between groups to ensure social distancing is maintained. Student seating will be located in sections AA-BB for both men’s and women’s games. Masks or facial coverings are required to enter the Dunn Center. They must remain in place at all times unless eating or drinking.
APSU Govs Online
Check back at LetsGoPeay.com and on Austin Peay State University’s Official Athletics Facebook page often for up-to-date news about all APSU Governor athletics, as well as the Governor women’s basketball Twitter page (@AustinPeayWBB). Live stats will be available during the game at PeayStats.com, and all home games and Ohio Valley Conference games can be viewed on the ESPN+ app.