Jacksonville, Ala. --- The Tennessee State University women’s basketball team defeated Jacksonville State, 74-66, in a hard-fought overtime victory Saturday afternoon in Pete Mathews Coliseum.
The win was TSU’s (13-12, 10-4 OVC) fifth straight and keeps the Lady Tigers in third place of the OVC standings.
Jacksonville State was led by Candace Morton’s 20 points while Courtney Strain added 10.
TSU was down, 13-10, in the first half before using an 11-0 run to capture a 21-13 lead over JSU. The opponents responded and cut the deficit down to two points moments before the half ended and the Lady Tigers only held 25-23 advantage at the break.
The second frame was a battle from the onset as neither team would let up. TSU and JSU traded buckets and played to a 30-all stalemate by the 16-minute media.
The game was locked in yet another tie when JSU scored seven unanswered points to build a, 48-41, cushion. On the Lady Tigers’ next possession Briana Morrow connected in the paint to end a four-minute scoring drought.
TSU trailed for the next several minutes but stayed within striking distance.
Holding on to a one-point advantage, TSU had the ball with 32.3 seconds remaining. JSU was forced to foul and sent Leonard to the line.
The sophomore made the first to give TSU a 56-54 lead. The Lady Tigers committed a foul on the next possession but the Gamecocks only managed to connect on one of the freebies. TSU regained the ball and JSU had to foul again.
Jayda Johnson stepped up to the line for TSU with 6.8 seconds remaining and sank both free-throws. TSU was up, 58-55, with only seconds remaining but JSU drove the length of the floor and banked in a three-pointer to force overtime.
In the extra period, Rachel Allen buried a triple from the top of the key before a Jayda Johnson jumper gave TSU a, 67-60, lead. The Gamecocks threatened but the Lady Tigers were able to keep them at bay.
Tennessee State outrebounded Jacksonville State, 49-36 and shot a scorching 71.4 percent from the field in overtime.
Tennessee State returns to action on Wednesday, Feb. 25 for the final home game of the season. The Lady Tigers will welcome the Eagles of Morehead State to the Gentry Center on Senior Night. Game time is slated for 6 p.m.