February 16, 2013

Women's basketball squares off against Morehead State in OVC Tilt

 

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -- Kicking off a three-game road stretch, the Tennessee Tech women's basketball team gears up to take on Morehead State Saturday at 4:15 p.m. CT in a key OVC matchup. Three of the Tech'sfinal five games are on the road, and every contest counts as the Golden Eagles are just one-half a game out of first place in the OVC East Division.

Tennessee Tech (14-10, 8-3 OVC) vs. Morehead State  (8-17, 4-7 OVC)
Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013
4:15 p.m. CT
Johnson Arena - Morehead, Ky.

The Broadcasts
TV: none
Radio: Fox Sports Radio, 106.1 The Eagle (Roger Ealey)
Webcast: OVC Digital Network 
Live Stats

Setting the Stage
The Golden Eagles kick of their final two-game road swing at Morehead State. The two teams will have to face each other twice in the final two weeks of the season and with the race for number one tighter than it has been in previous years, every game counts. 

Morehead has won six of the past 10 meetings, but the Golden Eagles have won the past three and are looking to keep the streak alive in Kentucky. Morehead State head coach Tom Hodges is no stranger as a 2004 Tech graduate. Hodges served as the women's basketball team manager during his four years as an undergrad. 

A Glance at the Golden Eagles
Despite having a tough end to January, the Golden Eagles have strung together a three-game winning streak for just the second time this season. Tech's win over Jacksonville State Saturday marked the fourth game this season the Golden Eagles have made 10-plus three's in one outing. The Golden Eagles went 11-of-21 from behind the arc, the second-highest total to date. 

Lashay Davis' effort sparked the Golden Eagles' shooting performance, making five of her seven attempts, four coming in consecutive possessions. Davis' effort tied her career-high 19 points, increasing her season average 12.4 points per 40 minutes of play.

Red-shirt sophomore Diamond Henderson continues to lead the Golden Eagles offense. Henderson is arguably Tech's best shot creator, averaging 15.9 points per game, shooting 47.5 percent from the floor. Henderson also leads the squad with a .409 three-point field goal shooting percentage. Henderson knocked in 19 points of her own against Jacksonville State, notching her seventh straight game in double-figures, the second Golden Eagle to do so this season, the first being Jala Harris who recorded nine-consecutive games in double-digits.

Harris is Tech's go-to guard as she's consistently averaged just over 13 points per game, but creates shots for her teammates better than anyone in the conference. Harris ranks 61st in the country with an assists/turnover ratio of 1.75. 

In the paint, T'Keyah Williams athleticism has bolstered 5.6 rebounds per game average, but has grabbed 25 boards in her last three outings. Head coach Jim Davis has mixed up the line-up with teammate Candace Parson earning the start in the past few games. Parson has seen her time increase with each competition, playing a key role on defense.

Tech's largest advantage over most teams is its ability to shoot the three from the four-post. Senior Kylie Cook and Molly Heady are key contributors for the Golden Eagles and knocked down a pair of three's between them against Jacksonville State.

As a team, the Purple and Gold average 66.0 points, a .422 field goal percentage, 6.5 three-pointers, 34.6 rebounds, 12.4 assists and 7.9 steals per game.  

A Look at the Eagles
Morehead State will match the Golden Eagles three-point efforts shot-for-shot. The Eagles average 7.3 three-pointers per game thanks to the shooting efforts of Terrice Robinson and Allie Turner. The pair have combined for 88 three's this season. Robinson leads the Eagles with 17.4 points per game and Almesha Jones contributes 10.6.

The Eagles have faced a tough draw this season, and are looking to reverse back-to-back loses to Eastern Kentucky and Belmont. Morehead was leading Belmont at the half, before falling to the Bruins 59-45 in Nashville one week ago.

As a team, the Eagles average 55.4 points, 7.3 three-pointers, 28.7 rebounds, 11.3 assists, 17.0 turnovers, and 8.3 steals per game.

Series History
This will be the 74th meeting between the pair of eagles, and the Golden Eagles hold a 55-19 advantage. Tech has taken every meeting since Morehead State's Hodges took the helm, but has fallen in six of the past 10 match-ups, overall.

Last season Tech swept the home and away series, defeating Morehead 68-50 at home and ran away with a slim 57-53 victory in Morehead. Seniors Jala Harris and Kellie Cook each had eight points in the win in Kentucky, while Harris had a breakout night when the Golden Eagles hosted scoring a game-high 18 points, earning her OVC Newcomer of the Week honors.