Nashville --- The Tennessee State University women's basketball team used a late second half rally to defeat SIU-Edwardsville, 81-71, Tuesday night in the Gentry Center.
In a game that featured ten ties and eight lead changes, Tennessee State (7-17) used a 16-4 run with six minutes left to take control of the game and pick-up a home win over SIU-Edwardsville (7-15).
Freshman Tayla Foster exploded for a career-high 33 points and recorded her second double-double of the season with 11 rebounds. Meredith Stafford came off the bench to score 14 points (eight rebounds) while Alana Morris chipped in 11 points and eight rebounds. Destiney Gaston finished the game with 10 points, three rebounds, three blocks and three steals.
Raven Berry led SIUE with 17 points while Allysa Decker tallied 16. Courtney Kenner added 10 points and Michaela Herrod grabbed 11 rebounds.
With the score tied, 4-4, TSU used a 10-0 run to go ahead, 14-4, at the 14:03 mark. The Lady Tigers extended their lead to, 19-9, when Kim Haynes nailed a triple from the top of the key nearly two minutes later.
Over the next couple of minutes, the Cougars posted eight unanswered points to pull within two, 19-17. TSU went back up, 25-21, following a put back by Destiney Gaston before SIUE closed to within one, 25-21, with 7:10 remaining in the half.
TSU was leading, 31-28, when SIUE hit a three-pointer to knot the game with 1:51 left. Neither team scored again before the halftime break.
SIUE scored the first bucket of the second half but Tayla Foster answered in the paint to even the score at 33-all. From there both teams traded buckets.
With the score even, SIUE posted five straight points to grab a 47-42 advantage with 11:48 on the clock. The Lady Tigers climbed back on top when a bucket by Tayla Foster sandwiched by two 15-footers from Destiney Gaston made the score, 48-47.
Another five-point spurt by the Cougars put them on top, 52-48 before TSU rallied to tie the score at 54 with 7:50 remaining.
TSU was holding on to a slight, 63-58, lead when a three-pointer from Meredith Stafford made the score, 66-58, in favor of the Lady Tigers (4:31).
SIUE cut the deficit down to six points on the next possession but two free-throws from Gaston and a lay-up by Foster increased the advantage up to double-digits.
A few moments later, a couple of freebies by Alana Morris made TSU's lead, 72-60, with 2:51 left in the game.
SIUE hit a three-pointer with 1:50 on the clock to make the score, 76-68, but that would be as close as the Cougars would get.
Tennessee State shot 44.4 percent from the field (24-of-54) and 80 percent from the free-throw line (28-of-35). SIU-Edwardsville finished with a 37.9 shooting percentage (25-of-66) while only knocking down 66.7 percent (16-of-24) from the charity stripe.
The Lady Tigers return to action on Saturday when they head to Clarksville to face Austin Peay in OVC action. Tip-off is slated for 5:15 p.m. in the Dunn Center.