Clarksville, Tenn. --- The Tennessee State University women’s basketball team overcame a 14-point deficit in an, 81-78, overtime victory at Austin Peay Saturday evening in the Dunn Center.
Tennessee State (7-9, 4-1 OVC) outscored Austin Peay (6-12, 3-2 OVC) 41-27 in the second half and forced 31 turnovers. TSU turned the APSU miscues into 31 points.
Senior Chelsea Hudson led TSU with 23 points (20 in the second half) and 12 rebounds for her fourth double-double of the season. Hudson also recorded her 1,000th career point and now has a total of 1,020. Jemilah Leonard came off the bench to score 13 points while Jayda Johnson chipped in 12. I’mani Davis registered 11 points and seven boards. Briana Morrow tallied eight points in only 18 minutes with six of her eight points coming in overtime.
Tearra Banks had 25 points and 10 rebounds while Tiasha Gray notched 19 points and 12 rebounds for Austin Peay. Jennifer Nwokocha also pulled down ten boards.
TSU got off to a slow start and only made one of its first fourteen field goal attempts. With 13:16 on the clock, Rachel Allen knocked down a three-pointer from the top of the key to end a five minute scoring drought but Austin Peay increased its advantage to 19-11 a few possessions later.
A 10-3 spurt fueled by TSU’s defensive pressure briefly pulled the Lady Tigers to within one, 22-21, but the Lady Govs countered with a 14-1 run of their own. APSU led, 36-22, at halftime.
TSU struggled from the field in the opening frame only making 19.5 percent (8-of-41) of its shot attempts, including 9.1 percent from three-point range (1-of-11).
In the second half, the Lady Tigers cut the deficit down to single digits after outscoring the Lady Govs, 11-2, to begin the stanza.
After slowly chipping away at the lead, TSU took a 49-48, lead on an offensive rebound and putback by Jayda Johnson with 7:52 left to play. The next several possessions were intense as the teams played to a 55-55 tie with 3:46 on the clock.
TSU was trailing, 61-60, when Austin Peay made two free-throws to go up, 63-60, with 40.8 seconds remaining.
On the next trip down the floor, Jemilah Leonard buried a timely triple to knot the score, 63-63. Austin Peay attempted a shot as time expired but it was off the mark and the game went to overtime.
The extra period was a battle from the onset as neither team would let up. The game was tied when Chelsea Hudson sank a three-pointer with less than a minute on the clock.
The Lady Tigers were up by four when APSU’s Tiasha Gray hit a three to make the score, 78-77, in favor of TSU with 19.3 seconds left.
Austin Peay was forced to foul and Jemilah Leonard went to the line. The sophomore made both free-throws and gave TSU an 80-77 lead. The Lady Govs hit one freebie to cut the deficit down to, 80-78, before having to foul again. Jayda Johnson made another free-throw to give TSU a three-point cushion and Austin Peay’s final three-point attempt was off the mark.
TSU shot 48.7 percent (19-of-39) in the second half and 85.7 percent (6-of-7) in overtime.
The Lady Tigers return to action on Wednesday, Jan. 21 versus Tennessee Tech in the Gentry Center. Game time is slated for 11 a.m. on Kid’s Day.