CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. (11/16/16) – The Arkansas State women’s basketball team cut a 10-point deficit down to one with 33 seconds to go, but Austin Peay closed the game on a 6-0 run to hand the Red Wolves a 62-55 loss at the Dunn Center Wednesday evening.
A-State (0-2) trailed 56-46 with 3:10 to go in the game, but slowly began to chip away at the lead as the Governor’s (2-1) went over two minutes without a field goal.
Brittany Fowler cut the lead to six with a 3-pointer with 1:42 to go to get within 56-50 and Starr Taylor followed with a jumper from the corner with shot clock expiring to get within four with 46 seconds to go.
Fowler, who scored a career-high 17 points, hit her fifth trey of the night with 33 seconds to get within 56-55, but Austin Peay answered with a pair of free throws on the ensuing offensive possession to go up by three points.
A-State ran a play for Fowler to take a 3-pointer, but the attempt was blocked and the Governors controlled and hit four of six free throws in the final seconds to close out the game.
“One of the real positives is that you never know how teams are going to react in late game situations and I thought we handled it pretty well down the stretch,” A-State head coach Brian Boyer said. “We were able to run some things and get positive results and that was good to see and is something that we can build on.”
The Red Wolves led 43-42 at the end of the third quarter, but Austin Peay went on an 8-0 run to start the fourth to build a 50-43 edge. The lead grew to its largest point at 56-46 after a pair of free throws by Bri Williams before the Red Wolves made the comeback to get within one.
The game featured 14 lead changes and six ties and was even throughout most of the night. A-State shot 29.3 percent (17-of-58), while the Governors shot 37 percent (20-of-54). The Red Wolves made five, 3-pointers and grabbed 36 rebounds. The squad also finished with seven steals and two blocks.
“There was a lot of good today, but my biggest disappointment was that fourth quarter defensively,” Boyer said. “I don’t think physical fatigue is the problem, but more mental fatigue and I think it’s because people just aren’t used to play a lot, but otherwise I thought the first three quarters went pretty well.”
A scoring drought of over 3-plus minutes dominated most of the second quarter. Fowler, who led the squad with eight points in the opening half, knocked down a 3-pointer with 5:20 remaining in the half to go up 25-21.
The next bucket of the period would not come until the 1:49 mark when Austin Peay’s Sydney Gooch got a layup and was fouled. She missed the free throw opportunity, but the Governors grabbed the offensive board and were fouled again and made 1-of-2 free throws to close the gap to 25-24.
Tahlon Hopkins put the Red Wolves up 27-24 on a layup with 1:35 left, but the Governors finished the half on a 4-0 run, including a buzzer beater by Jacey Scott to give Austin Peay a 28-27 lead at the break.
Austin Peay finished with three players in double-figures, led by Shelbe Piggie and Williams with 11 each. Terra Banks scored 10 points.
A-State returns to action Saturday, Nov. 19 at Tennessee State. Tipoff is set for Noon from Nashville, Tenn.