Charlotte, NC – The Austin Peay State University (APSU) women’s basketball team shot 60.6 percent from the field – its highest in the digital record-keeping era – to earn its first-ever ASUN Conference win in a 62-43 victory against Queens, Monday, at Curry Arena.
Yamia Johnson led Austin Peay in scoring for the fifth time this season with 15 points and was one of three Governors to reach double figures.
On the defensive end, Austin Peay (6-5, 1-0 ASUN) held Queens (5-7, 0-1 ASUN) to 16 made field goals and a .348 field-goal percentage – the Govs’ second and fourth-best defensive performances of the season, respectively.
The APSU Govs answered seven-straight Royals’ points in the game’s first three minutes with a 10-minute, 17-0 run – their largest and longest scoring run of the season – which spanned nearly midway through the second quarter. APSU forced 18 Queens’ turnovers in that run.
Johnson sparked the scoring run with a pair of free throws which was followed by Jada Roberson’s second three-pointer of the season to bring APSU within two with 5:32 remaining in the opening quarter.
Roberson stole a pass from former Gov and Queens’ guard Kasey Kidwell, and found Johnson who scored her first basket to tie the game at seven heading into the media timeout.
After the break, Roberson found a sprinting Mariah Adams on the baseline whose first of four baskets gave the Govs a 9-7 lead. Another pair of Johnson free throws were followed by back-to-back baskets by Liz Gibbs to end the first quarter.
Austin Peay State University made five of its seven shots from the field in the quarter, leading to a game-high .714 field-goal percentage in the frame.
Gibbs scored APSU’s third-straight basket to open the second quarter before the Govs saw their extended scoring run come to an end following a Royals’ three-pointer with 6:57 remaining in the half. Johnson answered Queens’ score by picking up a loose ball and making a corner three as the shot clock expired. The make from distance was her first two of the night.
After seeing its lead trimmed to 21-15 with 3:43 remaining, Austin Peay State University ended the opening half on a 9-1 run to take a 30-16 lead into the break.
Eight of the APSU’s 11 first-half baskets came in the paint, with its defense holding Queens to just six points inside the lanes.
Anala Nelson opened the second half with her fifth three-pointer of the season and first since December 1st against Gardner-Webb.
Five-straight points by the Royals cut APSU’s lead to 33-23 with 7:56 remaining in the game’s penultimate quarter, but it proved to be the closest the game would get, as the Govs would not miss a shot for the first seven and a half minutes of the third quarter and lead 50-32 with under three minutes to play.
After combining for 41 points in the third quarter, the Govs and Royals combined to score just 18 in the fourth quarter that saw neither team make more than a trio of shots from the field.
The Govs extended their lead to a game-high 20 points on a Shamarre Hale layup, giving APSU a 60-40 advantage with under three minutes remaining.
The two teams traded scores over the final two and a half minutes, resulting in Austin Peay’s first-ever win in ASUN Conference action.
Austin Peay State University took its first lead during the 17-0 run that went three minutes into the second quarter and never looked back. The 17-0 run that spanned over 10 minutes was both APSU’s largest and longest scoring run this season.
The Govs went 5-of-6 from the field and forced 18 turnovers in that run.
Inside the Box Score
The win was Austin Peay State University’s first win in ASUN play, its first against Queens, and its 22nd all-time in a conference opener.
Austin Peay State University’s .606 field-goal percentage was its highest mark in its digital record-keeping era.
APSU’s six made three-pointers were tied for its second-most this season.
The Governors’ 17-0 run which began at 7:09 in the first quarter and ended with 6:57 remaining in the second was its largest and longest of the season.
The Govs’ scored 24 points off 28 Queens’ turnovers – its most forced turnovers and tied for its most points off turnovers this season.
Yamia Johnson led Austin Peay State University in scoring for the fifth time this season with 15 points – her eighth double-digit scoring outing this season.
Mariah Adams led Austin Peay State University with five assists, the seventh time the graduate student has led APSU in assists this season. Adams’ three steals also were tied for her most this season.
Shamarre Hale’s plus-26 plus/minus is a career-high.
The Govs played a season-high 11 student-athletes in the win.
Austin Peay State University’s 21 bench points marked the eighth time it has eclipsed 20 points this season.
Austin Peay State University extended its streak of consecutive games with a three-pointer to 478 games, a streak that began against Evansville, on December 21st, 2006.
The Govs now have won 21 straight games, and 25 of its last 26 when holding opponents to under 50 points.
APSU outscored Queens 24-16 in the paint and now has won six of its last seven when outscoring the opponent between the lanes.
With head women’s basketball coach Brittany Young
Opening thoughts… “It was a great pull for the win. It was a great first win in the ASUN Conference. These young ladies are a part of history whether they realize it or not. They made history tonight, so I am excited about that. Overall, it was a little too sloppy for us from a coaching perspective, it could have been first-game jitters since it was also our first game since Deceber 21st, but we have to limit our turnovers we had way too many. It is going to be difficult to win games in this conference with 28 turnovers if we do not improve that. Our coaching staff is going to watch them and find ways that we can improve. But if you look, we shot about 61 percent from the floor, so if we were able to limit those turnovers to even 14, that is how this becomes a 30-point game instead of 20.
On the defense… “We sat down and talked about how people set New Year resolutions as a team and gave the team a couple of days to think of some, whether it was how many points per game we wanted to get to score how many we wanted to give up. One of our players, Tiya Douglas, when other players were bringing up ‘end of the game’ resolutions she said she did not think we should allow more than 12 points a quarter and I loved that… the first, second and fourth quarter tonight, we did that. That is who we are.”
On Kennesaw State… “We’ll look to improve turnovers. Kennesaw State is a team that is very similar to Queens in that they want to play in the paint and are aggressive. The style of the game will be similar, but we need to work on cutting down on our fouls. Aggressive teams, they will put their head down and attack the basket. Our bench’s energy was really good today sometimes that can cause players to overplay at times and get fouls. So, we need to settle down at times and trust our teammates not get too aggressive against a team that wants to attack.”
Next Up For APSU Women’s Basketball
The Austin Peay State University women’s basketball team concludes a brief-two-game conference-opening road trip when they travel face Kennesaw State in a January 5th game at the KSU Convocation Center in Kennesaw, Georgia. The tip-off is at 6:00pm CT.