WKU WBB cruise to 96-59 win over Kentucky State

Published: Nov. 21, 2021 at 9:23 PM CST
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - The offense came alive for the WKU women’s basketball team on Sunday afternoon against Kentucky State in E.A. Diddle Arena. The Toppers picked up a 96-59 win against the Thorobreds with five players in double figures.

“It felt like we were going to shoot the ball better than we shot it this past weekend,” said head coach Greg Collins. “A lot of credit goes to Kansas State and UT Martin for the defense they played. I felt like we were going to shot the ball a little bit better here, but the most important thing for us was to play solid defense. It felt like we did a good job for three quarters.”

WKU tied a nearly 25-year-old school record with 26 steals in the game. That mark is tied for the third most by a NCAA team this season and is the most by a Conference USA team since Marshall had 26 against Kentucky Christian on Dec. 18, 2017.

The Toppers forced Kentucky State into 38 turnovers and scored 46 of their 96 points off those miscues. That’s the most forced turnovers for WKU since turning Louisiana Lafayette over 38 times on Jan. 17, 1998.

On the other end of the floor, the Toppers dished out 28 assists which is tied for the eighth most in WKU history and is the most since WKU set the assists record with 37 on Jan. 11, 1997 against Lamar.

WKU’s 96 points in the game were the most for a WKU team in regulation since scoring 101 against FIU on Jan. 11, 2017.

“It was for us to get back out there and get a win,” said freshman guard Alexis Mead. “We needed to regroup and get back on the court. We worked on a lot of different things for us to come out here and get a win. We have to keep it going after this.”

Meral Abdelgawad was the leading scorer for WKU for the third time this season with 18 points. The senior stuffed the stat sheet with eight rebounds, seven steals and three assists. The seven steals tied her career high and it was her fifth career game with five-or-more steals.

“I’m trying to help them with everything on the court,” said Abdelgawad. “I’m not just focused on scoring. I’m helping with rebounding, steals and everything.”

Jaylin Foster and Macey Blevins added 13 points each in the game. Foster also had five rebounds and two blocks and Blevins recorded four rebounds and four assists in the game. Mead and Hope Sivori had nearly identical stat lines with 11 points, five assists and four steals each.

Overall, nine different Lady Toppers ended up in the scoring column and every WKU recorded a stat (points, rebounds, assists, steals, blocks) in the game.

The game started out back-and-forth, but WKU used a 10-0 run with 3:20 left in the first quarter to build a lead that would stick for the rest of the game. In the second quarter, the Tops outscored Kentucky State 35-8 to take a 56-20 lead into halftime. The second half had a much closer scoring gap with WKU outscoring the Thorobreds only 40-39, but the damage was done in the first half.

WKU will be back in action on Wednesday, Nov. 24 at noon against Indiana State in E.A. Diddle Arena. The game is a doubleheader with the men’s team and fans who purchase a ticket for the men’s game will receive free admission to the women’s game.

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