OVC Ball Statbox
|15-16 (6-10 OVC)|
|19-10 (11-5 OVC)|
|27/62 (43.5%)||Field Goals||29/56 (51.8%)|
|9/22 (40.9%)||3-Point FG||13/30 (43.3%)|
|19/32 (59.4%)||Free Throws||21/28 (75.0%)|
|35 (15/20)||Rebounds (O/D)||40 (10/30)|
|13||2nd Chance Pts||17|
|9||Points off TO||14|
|32||Pts in the Paint||28|
Tempo Tracker (Possessions)
Eastern Kentucky offense
Tennessee Tech offense
What happened: At halftime, you might have thought you stumbled into the wrong game. Instead of an up-and-down offensive clinic, both teams settled into a slower, half-court game.
…that didn’t last long.
Tennessee Tech used a 16-2 second half run to create separation, part of a 55-point second half in a 10-point win over Eastern Kentucky. Aleska Jugovic hit seven three’s on the way to a career-high 30 points, and Torrence Rowe added another 23 to keep the Golden Eagles hopes of getting a single-bye in Nashville alive.
Five Colonels scored in double-figures, and EKU pulled down a season-high 15 offensive rebounds, but poor free-throw shooting (19-32, 59.4%) and 13 TTU three’s were too much for the Colonels to overcome.
With Austin Peay’s win against Southeast Missouri on Saturday, the Colonels loss eliminated them from the OVC Tournament.
What it means: EKU entered the season as an underdog to make the conference tournament, between the four starters and coach from last season’s team, and they were just a win away from making it. In the end, inconsistency on offense, poor rebounding, and far too many turnovers (the most in conference play) will end the Colonels season early.
This season did have quite a few highlights. The fast paced Colonels were fun to watch, especially when the offense was clicking, and Jarelle Reischel was amazing to watch during November and December, (although his numbers slipped almost universally in conference play, which was easily the tougher half of the Colonels schedule) and it’s sad to see him go after just one year in the OVC.
The Colonels will return JaVontae Hawkins, though, and the 6’5 wing (which is the position he’s listed at on EKU’s official website) will almost certainly be an all-conference caliber player next season.
Player of the Night: He played just a single minute in the final game of his career, but Tommy Matthews finished the game 1-1 from the field.
What’s Next: Things should be pretty quiet in the offseason for the Colonels.
What it means: I’m guessing the Golden Eagles team will be coming together this afternoon to watch the Bruins and Tigers, given how much is on the line. The general consensus is that the OVC Tournament is wide-open, but you’d much rather only need three wins in three days than four. In fact, I’d wager that this year more than ever, given how every team seems so inconsistent, playing fewer games is in your favor.
In a larger, “do you believe in momentum” kind of way, this was a big win. Had they lost, TTU would have entered the OVC Tournament losing four of their last five games, and three straight. Instead? They’re coming off a win. Can’t hurt.
Player of the Night: Jugovic gets the nod for his career night, but it’s worth noting that he and Rowe combined to play 77 minutes. (Out of a possible 80)
What’s Next: Some fingernail biting this afternoon, but either way it’s a tough draw in Nashville. Barring upsets, a TTU / TSU rematch is in the cards for the quarterfinals, with Belmont looming in the semis.