George Meehan, Correspondent
The Jacksonville State women’s basketball team traveled to Southeastern Missouri State on Thursday, February 6 and University of Tennessee in Martin on Saturday, February 8 where they faced back-to-back defeats.
The Gamecocks fell to SEMO with a final score of 79-52 and to UTM 86-72. These games brought their record to 10-13 overall and 6-6 in conference play. SEMO girls remain in third place at 17-5 overall and 9-2 in conference play. Meanwhile, UTM continues to lead the league at 15-8 overall and 11-1 in conference play.
In Thursday’s game against SEMO, the Gamecocks shot at only 28 percent from the floor and 22 percent from three-point range, as well as a 74 percent from the free throw line. They took 49 shots and only made 14 from the field and four out of 18 shots beyond the perimeter.
Taylor Hawks and Destiny Elliot led all scorers with 10 points followed by Kiana Johnson with nine points overall. Destiny Elliot also led the team in rebounds with eight total. Elliot and Nekiyah Thompson led the team in assists with four each.
SEMO scored 23 points off of the Gamecocks 15 turnovers. Of the 15 turnovers, 10 of them came in the first half and the other 5 in the second. The first half had 10 fouls called on the Gamecocks in the first half forcing Head Coach Rick Pietri to take out Mckenna Lawrence and Elliot out of the game.
The majority of the Skyhawks scoring came from former Missouri transfer and SEMO leading scorer Carrie Sheppard who scored a total of 23 points and totaled seven assists, alongside Tesia Thompson who scored 22 points for SEMO.
SEMO out-shot the Gamecocks averaging 46 percent from the field making 31 of their 67 shot attempts. They also made seven out 18 shots from the three-point line, averaging 38 percent and made 10 out of 13 free throws averaging 76 percent. SEMO also out rebounded the Gamecocks 46-31.
On Saturday Jacksonville State finished their road trip at the University of Tennessee in Martin where the women’s team fell. While UTM outrebounded the Gamecocks 41-29 rebounds, the Gamecocks outscored UTM in points off turnovers with 21-16 points off turnovers.
Despite the loss, Yamia Johnson scored an impressive 32 points where the conference leading scorer Chelsea Perry scored 27. Johnson’s 32 points was the first by any Gamecock in nearly 17 years when Shakina Freeman dropped 37 at University of Alabama in Birmingham.
JSU’s second leading scorer was Destiny Elliot who ended the game with a double-double with 15 points and 10 boards.
The Gamecocks shot a total of 40 percent from the field shooting 26-64, as well as 12-31 from the three-point line, averaging at 38 percent. They also averaged 66 percent from the free throw line.
UTM’s Maddie Waldrop ended the matchup with a double-double totaling 16 points and 11 rebounds. Kyannah Grant led the team in Assists with 5.
The Gamecocks prepare to face Tennessee Tech tonight to try to hold on to sixth place in conference play as Tennessee Tech is looking to keep hold of fourth place in the Ohio Valley Conference.