Martin, Tenn. --- The Tennessee State could not complete its second half comeback in an, 83-67, loss to UT Martin Saturday night in the Elam Center.
The Lady Tigers rallied to within three points of the Skyhawks after trailing by 20 in the first half but a, 14-2, scoring run put UTM back in control of the game.
Jasmine Shuler led Tennessee State (5-10, 2-4 OVC) in scoring with a season-high 17 points while Tayla Foster added 13 points and seven rebounds. Alana Morris tallied a game-high 11 rebounds to go along with seven assists, two blocks and a steal.
UT Martin (9-7, 4-1 OVC) had four players to post double-digits led by Jasmine Newsome's 24 points. Heather Butler registered 13 points while Taylor Hall and Rickiesha Bryant added 12.
The Skyhawks shot nearly 60 percent (8-of-14) from three-point range in the first half to help UTM capture a 43-28 halftime lead.
Tennessee State shot 34.4 percent from the field an only connected on 20 percent (2-of-10) its three-pointers in the first frame.
The Lady Tigers fell behind by as many as 20 points before and old-fashioned three-point play from Avery Jones narrowed the gap down to fifteen points just before the half expired.
In the second half, the Lady Tigers came out with more intensity. With only a few seconds ticked off the clock, Alana Morris connected with Tayla Foster to bring TSU to within 13. The Skyhawks answered with another triple before a three-point bomb from Jasmin Shuler sparked a 10-0 Lady Tiger run that cut the deficit down to three, 46-43, with 14:57 on the clock.
On the Skyhawk's next possession, however, Grace Ann Swaim ended a five-minute UTM scoring drought and sparked a 14-2 run that made their lead, 60-45, with 10:52 remaining.
Over the next five minutes, missed opportunities and turnovers plagued the Lady Tigers as they fell behind, 77-53, with 5:12 left to play.
TSU did manage to outscore UTM, 12-3, down the stretch to make the final score, 83-67.
Tennessee State shot 36.8 percent from the field (25-of-68), including 7-of-22 (31.8 percent) from three-point range. UT Martin finished the game with a 43.8 shooting percentage (28-of-64), while nailing 44.8 percent (13-of-29) of their three-pointers.
Next the Lady Tigers will travel to Illinois to face SIU-Edwardsville in non-conference action on Tuesday, Jan.11. Game time is slated for a 7 p.m. start at the Valadabene Center.