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March 4, 2014

Tourney Time: Tech heads to their 32nd OVC Tournament

OVC Championship Central
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GAME NOTES

Gameday Central

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. - The Tennessee Tech women's basketball team is preparing for it's 32nd appearance in the OVC Tournament, and with a first-round bye, they will be playing in the quarterfinals on Thursday at 2 p.m. CT. It will be versus the winner of #6 Jacksonville State and #7 SIU Edwardsville.

Against the tournament field this season, Tech has a 6-5 record. Four of the seven teams are from the East Division meaning TTU faced them twice. Tech swept #4 Tennessee State, split with both #5 Eastern Kentucky and #7 Jacksonville State, and went 0-2 against #2 Belmont. Against the field from the West Division, the Golden Eagles went 2-1, gaining wins over #8 Eastern Illinois and #7 SIU Edwardsville. Tech lost to #1 UT Martin.

The Golden Eagles (12-19, 9-7) have been the third seed in just two other tournaments. In 2004-05, the Golden Eagles went 1-1, losing in the semifinals to Southeast Missouri, 71-68. In 2011-12, Tech was again the third seed, and they 2-0, before meeting up with UT Martin in the Championship game. UTM took the title, winning 82-65.

Come OVC Tournament time, the Golden Eagles have appeared in 32 out of 33 tournaments since the conference's first tournament in 1982. The Purple and Gold hold an amazing 45-22 all-time record at the OVC Tournament.


Tech's Potential Opponents

Jacksonville State (12-17,  8-8)
Tech vs. JSU - all-time record: 18-4 (Tech leads)
Tech's record vs. JSU this season: 1-1

JSU's Leaders
Points: Candace Morton (16.7)
Rebounds: Miranda Cantrell (7.4)
Assists: Kelly Naughton (3.3)
Free Throw %: Destany McLin (82.4%) 

SIU Edwardsville (11-18, 7-9)
Tech vs. SUE - all-time record:  4-2 (Tech leads)
Tech's record vs. SIUE this season: 1-0

SIUE's Leaders
Points: Tierny Austin (13.0)
Rebounds: Tierny Austin (6.9)
Assists: Alexis Chappelle (2.4)
Free Throw %: Valerie Finnin (74.1%)

Season Highlights

Second Time First
Diamond Henderson was named to All-OVC First Team for the second-straight year. Henderson was a Preseason All-OVC honoree. On the season, Henderson is averaging 19.7 points per game, 3.4 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 1.3 steals. Each one of those statistics is a career-best for the junior.

Ms. Mutombo
Kayla Brewer set the single-season blocks record with 59 and counting. It was previously held by Melinda Clayton at 55. Brewer is currently tied for 8th all-time in the OVC single-season record book.

Grandstand
Diamond Henderson joined the 1,000 point club this season  on a three-point basket against EKU in the Eblen Center. She was the 27th Golden Eagle in the club, and currently is 26th in scoring with 1,091 points.

Weekly Honors
Three different Golden Eagles earned weekly honors from the OVC throughout the season. Freshman guard Hannah Goolsby earned Freshman of the Week honors twice (11/26, 1/14). Kayla Brewer earned Newcomer of the Week (12/17) and Henderson earned Player of the Week (12/17). That same week, Henderson was honored by College Sports Madness as the Madness Ohio Valley Conference Player of the Week.