Preston Odam, Correspondent
The Jacksonville State Lady Gamecocks lost their final game in the Ohio Valley Conference in the first game of the conference tournament last Thursday to Tennessee Tech 79-64.
Yamia Johnson tied a school record of 25 points in the tournament game but it was not quite enough.
Johnson is now tied with Freddricka Embry for most points scored in a single OVC tournament game. Embry’s record dates back to JSU’s debut season in the OVC of 2004. Other top performers for the Gamecocks were Senior Taylor Hawks and Freshman Keiara Griffin who each added 11 points. Griffin also led the team in rebounds with seven and assists with three.
Tennessee Tech shot 56-percent from the field during the game but came out even hotter creating a lead that the Gamecocks could never top. The Gamecocks shots weren’t dropping in the first quarter as they were only 2-of-12 from the field. The Golden Eagles on the other hand, were able to put up 23 points in the opening period creating a double-digit lead JSU would attempt to surmount the remainder of the contest.
Tech stayed hot in the second quarter where they eventually got ahead of the Gamecocks by 21. Taylor Hawks was able to sink a jumper that would get the Gamecocks on a run entering halftime.
Tech still carried a 44-31 lead into the break. JSU came out in the third firing and went on a 10-2 run that cut the Golden Eagle lead to just seven. By the beginning of the fourth the lead was only eight, but Tech was still shooting well.
Tech stretched their lead throughout the fourth. JSU could never get over the hump. The Gamecocks were forced into taking tough shots due to time limitations in hopes of a comeback, but the shots wouldn’t fall. Tech took the victory in a 79-64 final.
Now, the Lady Gamecocks prepare for a new season in an entirely new conference. Sophomore guard Nekiyah Thompson is excited to prepare for the new season and new conference.
“We’re very excited about getting to work and preparing for a new year against new competition,” said Thompson. “We’ll miss our seniors, but we do have a lot returning that could help us be successful. We can’t wait to get to work.”