Tennessee State University’s Odessa Kelly scored a career-high 33 points against visiting UTM, but in the final 25 seconds it was Quanecia Fletcher’s layup that hurt the Skyhawks the most Thursday night.
Fletcher’s layup gave the Lady Tigers a three-point lead and an 85-82 win over the Skyhawks.
The Skyhawks managed to get off three shots in the final 20 seconds of play, but all three shots either fell short or bounced off the rim. For the Skyhawks it was a disappointing way to cap off a comeback attempt that included a stellar effort at the free throw line.
Down 43-38 at the half, the Skyhawks rallied in the second half. They hit 16-of-18 free throws and senior Amy Watson netted 17 of her career-high 27 points.
The game was tied six times in the second half and 11 times in the contest. Sophomore Danielle Page hit a pair of free throws with 4:41 to play. The first shot tied the game at 72-all, and the second shot gave the Skyhawks a 73-72 lead.
Junior Tiffany Brundige sank a pair of free throws with 3:26 to play. Brundige’s free throws gave the Skyhawks a three-point lead, 77-74. Kelly answered for the Lady Tigers with six points in a minute. Kelly’s effort put the Lady Tigers up by three points with 1:06 to play. With 29 seconds left in the game, Brundige cut into the deficit with a jumper. Four seconds later Fletcher hit the layup and left the Skyhawks scrambling for a three-pointer and an overtime period.
The Skyhawks fall to 5-6 in the Ohio Valley Conference and 8-14 overall. Tennessee State picks up its second win in the conference and improves to 4-16 on the year.
Watson led the Skyhawks’ scoring with 27 points. Brundige finished the game with 18 points, while Page added 10 points. Aquanya McClain chipped in 19 points for TSU, while Fletcher finished with 12 points.
Besides Kelly’s 33 points, Tennessee State out rebounded the Skyhawks 40-29. Kelly grabbed 10 rebounds. The Skyhawks were led in rebounding by junior Julie Young with seven.
Watson added six steals to her career-high scoring effort.
The Skyhawks finished their four-game road swing with a 1-3 slate. The team returns home Saturday to host Eastern Illinois in an OVC contest. Tipoff is set for 4 p.m. in the Kathleen and Tom Elam Center. The Skyhawk women will also host Southeast Missouri State at 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 17.
Freshman Emily Christian scored 27 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead host Tennessee Tech to a 77-70 victory over Tennessee-Martin Saturday. The Skyhawks fall to 5-5 in the Ohio Valley Conference and 8-13 overall. Tech enjoyed a 47-33 halftime lead, and at one time in the second half, led by as many as 16 points.
The Skyhawks cut the lead to four points, 74-70, with 25 seconds left in the game when sophomore Danielle Page made a layup and added a free throw. Senior Amy Watson led the Skyhawks’ effort with 19 points, while Julie Young and Page tossed in 12 points each. Senior LaShanta Morrow came off the bench in the second half and added nine points. Jennifer Simpson added 18 points to Tech’s total, while Arleigh Brackin chipped in 13 points.