Redhawks Win Share of OVC Regular Title
Feb. 25, 2006
CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. - (Saturday, February 25, 2006) The Redhawks women's basketball team didn't want to squander their chance for the program's first Ohio Valley Conference title as they tied their season-high output in points in a 87-72 victory over Jacksonville State in the Show Me Center on Saturday evening. The win clinched a share of the OVC regular season title with Tennessee Tech and secured the No. 2 seed in next weeks O'Reilly OVC Women's Basketball Championship Tournament.
The Redhawks (19-8, 16-4 OVC) controlled the tempo of the game from the onset as they only fell behind twice. A major factor was three-point shooting as half of the Redhawks 26 field goals came from beyond the three-point arc as they finished 13-30 (43-percent).
After the Gamecocks (11-16, 9-11 OVC) grabbed a one point lead, 11-10 at the 14:43 mark of the first half the Redhawks went on a 12-0 run highlighted by two three-pointers by Natalie Purcell (Auckland, New Zealand/Hutchinson CC). That run proved to be the difference in the game as the Gamecocks would get no closer than three points the remainder of the game.
A Tatiana Conceicao (Sao Paulo, Brazil/Western Nebraska CC) three-pointer at the 6:20 mark of the second half gave the Redhawks their largest lead of the game, 69-53.
For the second time this season the Redhawks had two players finish with 20 or more points as Conceicao recorded a game-high 25 points and Purcell finished with 24.
Conceicao went 8-16 (3-7 from three-point range) from the field and a perfect 6-6 from the charity stripe. She also added five rebounds and a game-high five assists. 19 of her points came in the second half.
Purcell also went 8-16 from the field including 5-11 from three-point range. She recorded a game-high 11 rebounds for her fifth double-double of the season. She also recorded a team-high three steals. 17 of her points came in the first half.
Tiffanne Ryan (Oklahoma City, OK/Westmoore) finished with 11 points off the bench as she went 2-4 from the field (all three-point attempts) and 5-6 from the free throw line. She also added four rebounds and two steals.
The Gamecocks had four players in double-figures led by Rebecca Haynes with 18 points on 8-13 shooting. Ashley Boykin added 15 points and Courtney Slaughter finished with 13 points and a team-high eight rebounds. LaTonya McKinney rounded out the scorers with 10 points.
After the bench was nearly shoutout against Samford they responded by outscoring the Gamecocks bench 21-7.
The Redhawks outrebounded the Gamecocks 40-35 and forced 21 turnovers that led to 25 points.
The 16 OVC wins are the most conference wins in school history.
The Redhawks open the O'Reilly OVC Tournament with a home game against No. 7 seed Murray State on Tuesday, February 28. Tip-off is set for 7:00 p.m. at the Show Me Center.