UT Martin is no stranger to breaking conference records. This afternoon, they broke a few more. Jasmine Newsome became the conference’s second all-time leading scorer, trailing only teammate Heather Butler, on the way to a 97-45 win over Eastern Kentucky, the largest margin of victory in OVC Tournament history.
As one would suspect from the final score, it was never in doubt.
The top-seeded Skyhawks opened the game on a 20-0 run over the first 5:19, hitting four of their first seven from three-point range, while forcing seven turnovers during the run. From that point, Eastern Kentucky would never pull closer than 17, as the Skyhawks rolled on their way to their fourth straight OVC Tournament finals appearance.
Despite their record-breaking day, the Skyhawks aren’t stopping to smell the roses.
“It’s a great award and all,” Newsome said of moving to number two in the conference’s all-time scoring list. “But I don’t think neither one of us focus on individual awards right now. I think later on life we’ll probably worry about that, but right now we’re not worried about that.”
“This time of year, it’s 90% about these guys and what they want to do,” UT Martin head coach Kevin McMillen said. “The thing is now, none of this is going to matter, because tomorrow is the big one.”
Eastern Kentucky head coach Chrissy Roberts admits that fatigue was likely a bit of a factor for the Colonels, who were playing their third game in as many days.
“I felt like we competed,” Roberts said. “They’re tough; we ran out of gas.”
UT Martin moves on to face the winner of Belmont / Jacksonville State in the title game, as they seek their fourth straight conference title.