The Eastern Kentucky University women’s basketball team held Tennessee Tech University to just five made field goal attempts and scored 20 points off forced turnovers in the first half en route to a 76-68 win over the Golden Eagles Saturday afternoon at the Eblen Center in Cookeville.
The Colonels (4-7, 1-1 OVC) started the contest with great defensive intensity, holding Tennessee Tech without a field goal for the first 5:44 of the contest and allowed just two total in the first quarter. EKU ended the first period shooting 67 percent (10-of-15) from the field and held the Golden Eagles to just 18 percent (2-of-11). In addition, Eastern scored 14 points in the paint and forced TTU into seven turnovers, converting them into 11 points to open up a 22-9 advantage.
The defensive pressure continued into the second quarter, as EKU forced six more Tech turnovers and held the Golden Eagles to 3-of-10 shooting, taking a 35-17 lead into halftime.
Junior Abby Wright led the way for EKU, scoring a career-high 22 points on 6-of-11 shooting. The Murfreesboro, Tennessee native also connected on 4-of-6 from behind the arc and made 6-of-7 from the charity stripe. Junior A’Queen Hayes was not far behind in the scoring column, adding 20 points. It marked the first time two Colonels scored 20 or more points in a game since Jalen O’Bannon (23) and Shavontae Naylor (23) completed the feat on Feb. 1 of last season in an 80-71 win against Austin Peay.
EKU finished the game with 20 bench points, the second-most this season. The Colonels also forced Tennessee Tech into 19 turnovers and converted them into 29 points, a new season-high.
TTU (3-10, 0-2 OVC) found itself down 20 heading into the final period, but did not falter. A Jordan Brock jumper ignited a 10-0 Golden Eagle run to trim the deficit in half. Tennessee Tech would cut the lead to five with just 17 ticks on the clock after four-straight missed free-throws by the Colonels. EKU, however, would convert 5-of-6 free throws in the final 17 seconds to seal the win.
Tennessee Tech was led in scoring by Akia Harris, who scored 22 points. The Golden Eagles had four players in double-figures.
The Colonels return to action Thursday, when they take on SIUE in McBrayer Arena. Tipoff is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. ET.
— www.EKUSports.com —
Assistant Athletics Director for Communications & Branding