Cougars Drop Jacksonville State 78-57
JACKSONVILLE, Ala. - Jazmin Hill led all scorers with 16 points Monday as SIUE cruised to a 78-57 triumph over Jacksonville State in women's Ohio Valley Conference basketball action at Pete Mathews Coliseum.
SIUE won its fifth road game of the season and improved to a 12-8 mark overall. The Cougars next head to Tennessee Tech for a 7 p.m. Wednesday matchup with the Golden Eagles. As both SIUE and Tennessee Tech are 6-3 in the OVC, the winner of that contest will have sole possession of third place in the league standings.
SIUE Head Coach Amanda Levens said Monday's score was not indicative of the game. "They are a tough team. We told our players how important it was to have composure and remain poised."
The Cougars kept their composure despite Jacksonville State hitting eight of their first nine shots from inside the arc over the first seven minutes of play. SIUE was never down by more than three points and began to pull away with a 10-2 run over the final six minutes of the first half to take a 44-31 lead at halftime.
Hill would hit four three-pointers in the game, the seventh time this season the Cougar sophomore has achieved that feat. Her 16 points were aided by 12 from Tierny Austin and 10 from Michaela Herrod. Austin's 12 would match her season best.
"Jazmin gave us a great lift early and hit some big shots for us," said Levens.
SIUE shot a season-best 50 percent (33-66) from the field on the road. "Our team did a great time tonight of taking good shots every possession," added Levens.
Jacksonville State, now 4-19 overall and 1-9 in the OVC, finished with three players in double figures. Brittany Manning led the Gamecocks with 12 points followed by 11 from Danielle Vaughn and 10 from Destine Lane.
SIUE wreaked havoc on defense and on the offensive boards against the Gamecocks. The Cougars turned 18 JSU turnovers into 19 points and outscored JSU on second-chance points 20-6.
"Anytime you can force a couple turnovers it makes them a little uncertain. The impact of one turnover can actually affect a couple possessions. Our team did a good job trying to get their hands on the ball defensively," said Levens.