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HomeSportsAPSU Women's Basketball starts season on the road at Evansville

APSU Women’s Basketball starts season on the road at Evansville

Austin Peay at Evansville
Tuesday, November 9th, 2021 | 6:00pm CT
Evansville, IN | Meeks Family Fieldhouse

APSU Women's BasketballClarksville, TNBrittany Young makes her debut as the Austin Peay State University (APSU) 12th head women’s basketball coach when the Governors travel to Evansville for a Tuesday contest at the Meeks Family Fieldhouse at 6:00pm in Evansville, Indiana.

Austin Peay State University is looking to win its season-opening game for the third-straight season, the last time the Governors won three-straight season openers was part of a five-game streak from 1983-87.

A win would also mark the first time in program history that the Govs have won season openers on the road in back-to-back seasons.

Young’s inaugural Austin Peay State University team features seven returners and seven newcomers, comprised of three transfers and four freshmen.

About the Evansville Purple Aces

First-year head coach Robyn Scherr-Wells takes over an Evansville women’s basketball program that posted a 6-18 overall record and a 2-16 mark in Missouri Valley Conference play a season ago. The Purple Aces finished at the bottom of the MVC standings during the 2020-21 season and were picked to finish there again in the league’s preseason poll, which is voted on by the conference’s head coaches, sports information directors, and media.

Scherr-Wells spent the 2020-21 season as an assistant coach at Florida International, where she helped lead the Panthers to a 15-13 mark and a trip to the Women’s Basketball Invitational (WBI). Prior to her time in Miami, Scherr-Wells spent three years as an assistant coach at Davidson, helping guide the Wildcats to the WBI during the 2018-19 season.

As a head coach, Scherr-Wells spent a combined seven seasons at Roosevelt University and Davenport University, both NAIA programs, where she recorded a 144-83 record between the two programs.

On the court, Abby Feit averaged a team-high 14.9 points and 7.8 rebounds per game for the Purple Aces. The 6-1 junior forward also led Evansville with 33 made three-pointers, 33 steals, and 23 blocked shots last season.

Senior A’Niah Griffin averaged 8.7 points per game and was Evansville’s second-leading scorer last season. Senior guard Anna Newman also led the Purple Aces and ranked sixth in the MVC with 3.7 assists per game during the 2020-21 season.

Series History

This is the 22nd meeting in a series that dates back to 1982; Austin Peay leads the all-time series, 12-9, and has won two of the last three contests.

Maggie Knowles scored a career-high 25 points and led Austin Peay to a 80-64 win over Evansville on November 21st, 2019, in the Winfield Dunn Center in Clarksville.

The Governors knocked down 16 three-pointers — two off the program’s single-game record — with Knowles connecting a career-high seven times from three-point range. Shay-Lee Kirby also added 17 points and four triples in the Governors three-point barrage. Tahanee Bennell led the Govs with eight assists, she also tacked on a pair of three-pointers.

On the glass, Arielle Gonzalez-Varner and Knowles pulled down seven and six rebounds, respectively, with all seven of Gonzalez-Varner’s boards coming on the offensive end. On the defensive end, Austin Peay State University recorded 18 steals — led by Gonzalez-Varner with five — and forced the Purple Aces to turn the ball over 33 times.

Jada Poland led Evansville with 23 points, Abby Feit also added 17 points and a team-best eight rebounds for the Purple Aces.

APSU Notably

Brittany Young is set to make her debut as the 12th head women’s basketball coach in Austin Peay State University history when the Governors square off with Evansville to open the 2021-22 season.

Young will look to become the third head coach in program history to win their debut, joining Pam Davidson (1979-84) and Marvin Williams (1984-88).

Austin Peay State University has three of the Ohio Valley Conference’s top-eight active career three-point shooters with Karle Pace (2nd, 159), Maggie Knowles (4th, 153), and Yamia Johnson (8th, 123).

APSU is looking to win three-straight season openers for the first time since they won five-straight from 1983-87.

Transfer Yamia Johnson ranked fourth in OVC scoring (14.9 ppg) and was a First Team All-OVC selection at Jacksonville State last season, she is a Preseason All-OVC selection this season.

Karle Pace was a First Team All-OVC selection at Eastern Illinois in 2019-20, she ranked sixth in the league in scoring (15 ppg) that season and has ranked in the top ten in the league in scoring in each of the last three seasons.

Junior Shay-Lee Kirby has played in two season-opening games in her collegiate career, she is averaging 22.5 points and 3.5 made three-pointers in those two contests.

Junior Ella Sawyer dished out a team-high 3.1 assists per game last season, she led the Govs in assists in seven of the 14 games she played in last season.

D’Shara Booker is the Govs top returning rebounder after averaging 6.1 rebounds per game last season; she also led APSU with a .603 field-goal percentage, which was good for the fifth-best single-season mark in program history.

Tickets, Please

Season and single-game tickets are on sale for the 2021-22 basketball season. Fans can purchase or renew their season tickets online at LetsGoPeay.com/BuyTickets or by calling the Austin Peay State University Ticket Office at 931.221.PEAY (7329). More information on season and single-game tickets can also be found online.

APSU Govs Online

For up-to-date news and information on Austin Peay State University Athletics, check back at LetsGoPeay.com or follow along on Facebook. To keep up with the Governors women’s basketball team, follow along on Twitter and Instagram (@GovsWBB). Live stats will be available during all home games and select road games at PeayStats.com.

In addition, all Austin Peay State University home games, OVC games, and select road games will be broadcast on ESPN+ this season, visit the women’s basketball schedule at LetsGoPeay.com for a complete broadcast schedule.

Next Up For APSU Women’s Basketball

Brittany Young will make her Dunn Center debut when the Austin Peay women’s basketball team plays its home opener against Pikeville on Friday in the Winfield Dunn Center at 6:00pm.

The Governors then host North Alabama on November 16th at 6:00pm, before heading back on the road for the rest of November.


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