By Holly Weber, TTU Sports Information
COOKEVILLE, Tenn.—The Tennessee Tech women's basketball team (4-12, 1-2 OVC) will continue their four-game home stand on Saturday when the Golden Eagles play host to Murray State (10-5, 2-0 OVC) in a 5:30 pm contest at the Hooper Eblen Center.
This meeting with the Racers will mark the 80th time the two teams have ever faced off. Tech currently holds the 63-16 advantage in the series; however, Murray State last saw success in the 2015-16 season when the Racers topped the Golden Eagles 56-50 in Murray, Ky. In games played in Cookeville, Tech is also favored 31-4.
Yaktavia "Shug" Hickson leads the Golden Eagles averaging 16.6 points per game, which ranks her second amongst players in the OVC. Hickson shoots 41.7 percent from the field, 30.8 percent from the three-point range, and 85.7 percent from the free throw line (fourth best mark in the OVC). Hickson averages 4.0 rebounds per contest and has tallied 25 assists and 15 steals thus far this year.
Treyvonna "Trey" Brooks is another key player on the Golden Eagle lineup. Brooks is Tech's leader off the glass averaging 6.8 boards per game. She is also the Golden Eagle's second leading scorer averaging 10.1 points per game. Brooks shoots 47.9 percent from the floor, 35.0 percent from downtown, and 63.6 percent from the charity stripe. Brooks is also the second leader in blocks (21) and tied for the leader in steals (21) on thus far this season. In the OVC, Brooks ranks 12th in rebounding, eighth in blocked shots, and third in offensive boards.
Freshman Akia Harris is doing big things for the Golden Eagles this season. Harris leads Tech in assists with 65 thus far this season. Most recently, Harris was just shy of a triple-double vs. Austin Peay when she collected 12 points, seven rebounds, and nine assists. Harris currently ranks eighth in the OVC in assists, while landing as seventh in assist/turnover ratio.
LeAsia Wright and Abria Gulledge are two other Racers to look out for. Wright averages 15.7 points per game, while Gulledge posts 11.9 points per contest.
Leading Murray State and the Ohio Valley Conference off the glass is Kyra Gulledge, who corrals 8.3 boards per contest. Gulledge also leads the Racers in blocks with 31 on the year, which is the third best mark in the OVC.
As a team, Tech shoots 37.9 percent from the field, 28.7 percent from the three-point range, and 69 percent from the line while Murray State shoots 42 percent from the floor, 31 percent from downtown, and 68 percent from the charity strip. The Golden Eagles average 37.4 rebounds and 17.2 turnovers per contest to the Racers' 42.1 boards and 15.9 turnovers.
You can follow the Golden Eagles online on the TTU Sports and Tennessee Tech Women's Basketball Facebook pages or on Twitter at @TTUGoldenEagles and @TTUWBB.
Photo by Jim Dillon