The Skyhawk women had a disappointing ending to an already tough season, as they lost to Murray State on Saturday, 58-45.
The Murray State Racers dominated the beginning of the game, as they were able to hold the Skyhawks scoreless for the first nine minutes of the game.
The Racers played very aggressive defense that really caused problems for UTM.
The Skyhawks continued to fight, and they were able to answer with a run of their own. However, Murray State managed to build a 12-point lead at the half, 25-3.
The second half was an absolute battle, and the Skyhawks fought their way back into the game. UTM capped off a run as sophomore forward Crystal Fuller drove the lane for a layup with 2:44 left in the second half. The basket cut Murray State’s lead down to 46-41.
Murray State went on to respond with a 12-4 run to close out the game. The Racers were led by Joi Scott who had a game-high 23 points, while Jill Fulkerson connected on five 3-pointers for her 15 points.
Junior forward Andreika Jackson led the Skyhawks with 11 points and 10 boards, for her fifth double-double of the season. Senior Keva Robinson added nine points and six rebounds, while Deina Willingham and Fuller both added eight points each.
The season marks the second year under head coach Tara Tansil. The Skyhawks finished the season with an 8-19 overall record, including a 6-14 record in the OVC. The team finished tenth in conference standings and was eliminated from post season play.
The Skyhawks lose their one senior starter, Robinson. The Skyhawks will miss Robinson’s leadership presence on the court as she led the team in assists with 71.
She was also first in blocks, second in steals, third in scoring, and fourth in rebounding.
The Skyhawks are returning four starters, including team captains Andreika Jackson and Deina Willingham. Jackson finishes the season as the ninth all time leading scorer in UT Martin history with 1092 points.
Jackson led the team in points and rebounding with averages of 15.2 and 7.9, respectively. Willingham was second on the team in points with 11.3 and second in rebounds with 7.5.
The duo will look to be more assertive next season and cause match-up problems for teams in the OVC.
The Skyhawks also look to return senior Nicole Rivers, who was red shirted last season due to a knee injury.
Rivers started in every game she played during the 2004-05 season. She came to UTM from Three Rivers Community College where she was named all-region and all-conference.
Also, Kentucky high school prospect, Nicole Holman has already committed to coming to UTM next season. “We are excited about Nicole choosing UTM,” coach Tansil said. “She will come in and make an immediate impact on our program.”