LADY TIGERS DEFEAT TECH 57-50
NASHVILLE---Three Lady Tigers scored in double figures as the Tennessee State University women's basketball team defeated the Golden Eagles of Tennessee-Tech 57-50 Saturday night in the Gentry Center. With the win TSU ends an eight game conference losing streak and moves to 2-9 in the league with an overall record of 5-15. Tennessee Tech (6-15, 5-7 OVC) was held to 22 points under its average and committed 28 turnovers. Oby Okafor collected her seventh double-double of the season with 16 points and 12 rebounds. Okafor also had five steals. Kendra Appling tallied 16 points and dished out four assists while Nikki Rumph chipped in 13 points and six rebounds. Jheri Booker had an outstanding defensive performance as she collected a career-high nine steals. When the game began, Tennessee-Tech didn't waste time getting on the board as Kendall Cavin knocked down a 3-pointer to give Tech the early lead. Two straight buckets by Oby Okafor, however, would put TSU on top 4-3 lead at the 17:59 mark. With 16:39 left to play in the first half, a lay-up by Kendall Cavin sparked a 9-0 run that saw Tech jump out to a 12-4 lead. Following a 30-second timeout, TSU went on a 7-2 run to cut the deficit to three points (14-11) with 7:26 left in the half. TTU re-upped its lead to six (19-13) with 4:56 on the clock but TSU rattled off nine unanswered points to go ahead 22-19 with 1:47 left to play. Tech's Kristina Tyler hit a lay-up with 38 seconds on the clock to cut the TSU lead to only one at the half (22-21). The second half opened with Jheri Booker getting three consecutive steals that led to five TSU points in fifty-six seconds, forcing a Tennessee-Tech timeout. The Golden Eagles scored out of the timeout (27-23) but a lay-up by Oby Okafor, a jumper by Nikki Rumph and a free-throw from LaDona Pierce extended the TSU lead to nine (32-23) with 14:15 left to play. Tennessee State grabbed its first double-digit lead (38-28) of the game behind a lay-up from Jheri Booker at the 10:44 mark. TSU led by as many as fourteen points but Tech would not go away. With 2:56 left in regulation a 3-pointer by Cara Reed brought the Golden Eagles to within five (47-42). Key buckets from Kendra Appling and Jheri Booker put TSU back on top by nine (51-42) with 1:34 left to play. Tennessee-Tech pulled to within five points with 18 seconds remaining but the Lady Tigers were able to keep the Golden Eagles at bay. The Lady Tigers will be right back in action on Tuesday (Jan.30) when they travel to Jacksonville State to face the Gamecocks for the second time this season. Game time is set for 7:00 p.m.