The JSU women won their 15th game of the year on Saturday with a 63-50 victory against OVC opponent Tennessee State.
The win gave the Gamecocks their first 15-win season since 2004-2005 and placed them at a generous 6-4 in the OVC standings. It also gives them a three-game win streak and snaps a road loss streak that goes back to Jan. 3 when the Gamecocks lost to Eastern Illinois. It places them fourth in the OVC standings just behind Morehead State.
Destany McLin led the way in scoring for the Gamecocks with 16 points. Candace Morton was behind her with 14. JSU was nearly perfect in free throws as they made 9-of-10.
The first half was well matched for both teams. While JSU went into the locker room with the lead, it was not an easy battle to get there.
JSU jumped out in the front first, but it wasn’t long before TSU had tied the score at four for the first of four times in the first half. JSU took the lead by two, but less than 20 seconds later, the Tigers had tied it again.
It would be nearly five minutes later, after a Morton turnover, that TSU would take the lead 8-6 for the first time. They went up by their highest lead of the game 13-6 before Gretchen Morrison would hit two back-to-back three-pointers that would bring TSU’s lead back down to one.
However, TSU would keep their lead within six until JSU managed to tie it at 22 with 6:26 remaining. They exchanged points and wound up tied again at 27 on a Morton free-throw with only 3:06 left in the half. Another two free-throws from Morton gave JSU their 30-27 lead and, after a three-pointer from both TSU and JSU, the first half came to a close with JSU in the lead 33-30.
JSU was perfect on free throws in the first half with six. They were also 11-of-29 for field goals made.
Morton led the way in the first half with 11 points scored on her own, nine of which came on three-pointers.
The second half opened with a quick shot by McLin to put JSU up by five fast. TSU reclaimed the lead at 16:17 for the last and final time in the game. JSU would tie it up again at 39 one-minute later, then reclaimed their lead by three before TSU tied it at 42.
After that, JSU would take the lead back and not release it for the remainder of the game. By the seven-minute mark, JSU had a lead by eight. As the final two minutes began to tick away, JSU had their 13-point lead that would eventually win the game, but TSU tried for two more 3-pointers that both fell short. The Gamecocks came away with the victory.
The Gamecocks look to continue their OVC win streak Saturday Feb. 7 against Tennessee Tech in Cookeville.