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Austin Peay State University Women’s Basketball plays Saint Mary’s at Women’s Basketball Invitational

Austin Peay (19-11 | 11-7 OVC) vs. Saint Mary’s (CA) (15-15 | 9-9 WCC)
Friday, March 18th, 2022 | 1:30pm CT
Lexington, KY | Clive M. Beck Center

APSU Women's BasketballClarksville, TN – For the eighth time in program history, the Austin Peay State University (APSU)women’s basketball team extends its season beyond its conference tournament.

The Governors are set to play in their first-ever Women’s Basketball Invitational, starting with a Friday game against Saint Mary’s (Calif.) at the Clive M. Beck Center, on the campus of Transylvania University, in Lexington, Kentucky. The game begins at 1:00pm CT.

Austin Peay State University is guaranteed three games at the WBI and also will play Saturday and Sunday in the eight-team tournament. Bowling Green, Furman, Davidson, Nevada, Cleveland State, and Northeastern also are participating in the WBI.
 
The Governors are 19-11 this season, but just 6-7 on the road and 1-3 at neutral sites. Austin Peay fell to Belmont, 63-51, in the semifinals of the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament after picking up its first conference tournament win in over a decade when it beat Tennessee State, 67-53, in the quarterfinals. 
 
Saint Mary’s wrapped up its season with a 15-15 mark, going 7-8 on the road and 0-1 at neutral sites. The Gaels’ dropped their first game in the West Coast Conference Tournament, falling to Loyola Marymount, 71-64, in the second round. 

All three of Austin Peay State University’s games at the WBI will be broadcast on the Governors Sports Network, with Ethan Schmidt calling all the action ESPN Clarksville. 

Friday’s game, as well as all the games at the WBI, will be streamed on WatchWBI.com with Greg Horn on the call. The live stream will cost $10.00 per day.

About the Saint Mary’s Gaels

After being picked to finish seventh in the 2021-22 West Coast Conference Women’s Basketball Preseason Poll, Saint Mary’s finished fifth in the WCC with a 9-9 record in league play. In his 16th season at the helm in Moraga, California, head coach Paul Thomas led the Gaels to a 15-15 overall record and their first postseason appearance since the 2019 Women’s National Invitational Tournament, where they fell to Pepperdine in the second round after beating Hawaii.

In the WCC Tournament, Saint Mary’s fell to Loyola Marymount, 64-71, in their first game of the tournament, which was played in the second round. 

The Gaels are led by the 2021-22 WCC Newcomer of the Year and First Team All-WCC selection Ali Bamberger, who began her career at Washington before missing the 2020-21 season due to an ACL injury. The 6-3 sophomore ranked sixth in the WCC in scoring, averaging 15.6 points per game, and second in rebounding, averaging 9.4 rebounds per game – she led Saint Mary’s in both categories. Bamberger also ranked sixth in the WCC in field-goal percentage (.464), second in double-doubles (9), and grabbed a career-high 20 rebounds against San Jose State (11/30/21).
 
Second Team All-WCC selection Taycee Wedin is the Gaels’ second-leading scorer and ranked 15th in the conference, averaging 12.2 points per game. Wedin ranks eighth in the NCAA in three-pointer made per game (3.0), tenth in threes made (88), and 26th in threes attempted (218) — she leads the WCC in all three categories. Wedin is also shooting 40.4 percent from behind the arc, which ranks 34th nationally and fourth in the WCC.

Saint Mary’s averages 69.1 points per game, which ranks fifth in the WCC, and gives up 72.4 points per game, which is the second-most in the WCC. The Gaels average 39.5 rebounds per game, which ranks third in the conference, and 6.9 three-pointers per game, which ranks fourth in the league. Saint Mary’s also ranks second in the WCC in free-throws attempted (551) and third in free-throws made (397).

Series History and Lasting Meeting

This is the first-ever meeting between Austin Peay and Saint Mary’s. The Gaels are the seventh first-time opponent the Govs will play this season and are the first since a 73-62 win at Gardner-Webb, Dec. 18, during nonconference play. 

Austin Peay State University went 4-2 against first-time foes this season, however, it is 0-3 all-time against teams from the Golden State with losses to California (2015), Cal Poly (2011), and Loyola Marymount (1998). The Governors are also 0-1 all-time against the West Coast Conference with a 78-66 loss to Loyola Marymount (11/28/98) in Los Angeles, California.

APSU Notably

2021-22 APSU Women's Basketball - Yamia Johnson. (Robert Smith, APSU Sports Information)Austin Peay State University is playing in its first-ever Women’s Basketball Invitational and is making its first national postseason appearance outside of the NCAA Tournament, where it has appeared seven times. 

APSU is making its first trip to a national postseason tournament since the 2010 NCAA Tournament, when it fell to top-seeded Tennessee, 42-75, in the first round in Knoxville, Tennessee.

2021-22 APSU Women's Basketball - Karle Pace. (Robert Smith, APSU Sports Information)Austin Peay State University has secured its third-straight winning season and its fifth-straight without a losing record.

APSU’s 19 wins are the best single-season mark in program history since the 2003-04 team won 23 games during its OVC Championship season. 

Austin Peay State University is playing a team from California for the fourth time in program history, the Govs are 0-3 all-time against teams from the Golden State.


2021-22 APSU Women's Basketball - D'Shara Booker. (Robert Smith, APSU Sports Information)The APSU Govs are shooting 45.6 percent from the floor — which ranks 13th in the NCAA and second in the OVC. The Govs have not shot over 45 percent from the floor in a season since the 2002-03 team set the single-season program record by shooting 47.4 percent.

Austin Peay State University ranks third in the OVC in scoring defense (59.5 ppg), third field-goal percentage defense (.395), and second three-point percentage defense (.290) — the Govs are the only team in the OVC that ranks in the top three in all three categories.

2021-22 APSU Women's Basketball - Shay-Lee Kirby. (Robert Smith, APSU Sports Information)The APSU Govs are shooting 37.2 percent from three-point range, which ranks eighth in the NCAA and leads the OVC, and are averaging 6.3 made three-pointers per game, which ranks second in the OVC.

Yamia Johnson and Karle Pace are averaging 14.8 and 14.5 points per game, respectively, and rank fourth and fifth in the OVC in scoring. They are the only teammates in the top seven in the league in scoring.

D’Shara Booker is shooting 64.8 percent from the floor, which leads the OVC and would rank fifth in the NCAA if she had made enough shots to qualify.

Tickets

Tickets for the WBI are $20.00 per person for each day of the event. Children age 12 and under are admitted for free with a paying adult. 


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

The winner of this game advances to take on the winner of Bowling Green and Furman at 2:30 p.m., Saturday, while the loser will play the loser of the same game at noon, Saturday. The Austin Peay State University women’s basketball team is also guaranteed to play a third game at the WBI, Sunday.

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