After an exciting, but ultimately tame Thursday, Saturday saw a few early shakeups. While these games could have an impact on seeding in March, the first really big question is which three teams, along with Jacksonville State, miss the OVC tournament.
For one school, they’re hoping a foul in OT with :00.1 left in overtime doesn’t come back to haunt them. But they may not be the team that should be the most worried after the first full week of conference play.
Last Night’s Scores
Eastern Illinois 50, Morehead State 65
Austin Peay 74, UT Martin 76
SIU Edwardsville 72, Eastern Kentucky 78
Murray State 74, Southeast Missouri 66
Belmont 83, Tennessee Tech 52
Three Point Shot
- About that foul with :00.1 left, I’m amazed that gets called. An over the back on an offensive rebound attempt? Unless it was overtly blatant (which from a few accounts, it wasn’t) that’s not a call you make with no time left. Tough way to lose a game, but before Austin Peay fans jump all over the referees, (which let’s be honest, they have already) the foul by Travis Betran with :15 seconds left in OT, with the Governors leading, put them in that situation to begin with. Without that foul, Austin Peay could have gotten the ball back with the lead, and likely would have ended their 7-game losing streak. Still a very tough loss, the second in as many games for the Governors.
- If forced to pick right now what teams miss the OVC tournament, Tennessee Tech may be at the top of my list. The Golden Eagles were completely blown out of their own gym last night, and their 0-3 start includes two home losses. They need to right the ship fast. EIU would also make my list, but the final team is much harder. I’m not certain UTM is better over 16 games than Austin Peay, but they have the edge right now after last night’s win.
- SEMO missed out on their chance to take control of the West Division, and frankly just a chance to beat Murray State. While Wednesday’s Murray State – Eastern Kentucky game doesn’t have the division implications, the Racers get to face another team on a mission to prove their an elite conference team. It’s another intriguing matchup early in the conference season.
Player of the Night: Isaiah Canaan, Murray State. In case you forgot what made him a second team All-American and OVC player of the year last season, he reminded us all why in the second half against Southeast Missouri. Breaking the all time three-point record at Murray State was just topping on the cake for the Racers senior.
Player of the Night in a Loss: Anthony Campbell, Austin Peay. 22 points on 6-10 shooting from the field, and a perfect 6-6 from the free throw line. The senior played 40 minutes, as his team came up just short on the road.
Unsung Hero: Orlando Williams, Eastern Kentucky. In only his third game this year, the junior transfer from Miami (OH) scored 12 points on 4-9 shooting. Williams is averaging 10 points a game over the three-game span, adding another offensive weapon to a already talented Colonel arsenal.
Team Trending Upwards: Tennessee State. Big win on the road, and they dominated most of that game. After a shaky start, Travis Williams has his team playing well in his first season at the helm.
Team Trending Downwards: Tennessee Tech. There’s no shame in losing to Belmont. But losing by 30 at home? That sting is going to be around for sometime.