JONESBORO, Ark. – WKU suffered its first conference loss and road loss of the season on Sunday when it was unable to overcome 24 turnovers and lost 63-58 to Arkansas State at the Convocation Center.
WKU (12-3, 5-1) narrowly missed out on winning at least 13 of its first 15 games for just the fourth time in program history. Previously, WKU began the season 13-2 in 1984-85, 14-1 in 1985-86 and 15-0 in 1994-95. Those three seasons resulted in two trips to the Final Four and an additional berth in the Sweet Sixteen.
Arkansas State (6-9, 3-3) shot 50.0 percent in the second half and piled up 25 points off WKU’s miscues in the win. The Red Wolves broke a 52-52 tie following a Chaney Means three-point field goal with a three by ASU’s Hanna Qedan with just under three minutes left and never had their lead cut to closer than one the remainder of the game. After WKU cut the lead to three following a basket by Jalynn McClain with 11 seconds left, WKU forced a double-dribble and received possession with 8.4 seconds remaining. Following the timeout, Alexis Govan missed a three-point field goal that would have tied the game.
WKU returns to the friendly confines of E.A. Diddle Area on Jan. 12, 2013 to meet Florida Atlantic. Tipoff is set for 4:00 p.m. It is the first game of a three-game home stand for the Lady Toppers. Season tickets and single game tickets are available through the WKU Ticket Office by calling 270-745-5222 or 1-800-5-BIG-RED. Tickets can also be ordered online at www.wkusports.com.
After starting the season 7-0 in road games, WKU suffered its first defeat away from home this season. The seven-game road winning streak was the third longest in program history.
The Lady Toppers led 16-8 following a basket from Bianca McGee with 10:19 left in the first half before Arkansas State scored 14 of the game’s next 18 points to take a 22-20 lead. ASU’s Ashley Olvera scored seven of the Red Wolves’ 12 points during the stretch. After falling behind by two, the Lady Toppers responded with a 9-2 run to lead 29-24 within the final two minutes of the half. ASU responded in the final 25 seconds of the half, scoring twice to cut the lead to one at 29-28. After hitting just 3-of-19 shots to begin the game, Arkansas State hit 7-of-9 shots to end the half.
Chastity Gooch had 10 points and eight rebounds at halftime, but 14 first half turnovers by the Lady Toppers hindered WKU’s efforts to pull away after taking an eight-point lead in the opening half. ASU capitalized off the WKU miscues by scoring 15 points off the turnovers in the opening half.
Gooch led WKU with 16 points and 12 rebounds. Govan added 14 points while Chaney Means added 10 points in just 16 minutes.
For complete coverage of WKU Lady Topper Basketball, visit the official website of WKU Athletics at www.wkusports.com.