Highlighted by senior Brianah Ferby’s 21-point night, the APSU women’s basketball team took the reigning Ohio Valley Conference Champion Redhawks to overtime, but were unable to come away with the win on Saturday night.
The contest between two of the OVC’s top-five teams was what one would expect, a back-and-forth battle with neither team able to create more than a two-score separation over their opponent—overtime only added that extra level of intensity.
There were 18 lead changes in the game between the Governors and Redhawks, with the final coming on a D’Shara Booker layup that gave APSU a 62-61 advantage with 14 seconds remaining.
After SEMO’s Tesia Thompson split her free throw attempts on the next possession, the game went into overtime knotted at 62.
It was the first time either team had gone to overtime this season. The last time the Govs had seen overtime was Dec. 29, 2019, when they topped Illinois State 77-72. This extra period did not fare as well against SEMO.
APSU’s sole field goal in OT came off the right hand of Shay-Lee Kirby that tied the game for the 10th and final time. The Redhawks went on a 7-2 run after Kirby’s basket, outscoring the Govs 11-6 in overtime and coming away with the 73-68 victory.
With the loss, the Governors drop to fifth in the OVC standings with six games remaining before the postseason begins.
When facing off against teams that currently rank below them in the standings, APSU is an impressive 8-0.
That script is flipped when facing higher competition: when the Govs meet up against the conference’s top-four teams—UT Martin, Belmont, SEMO and Tennessee Tech—they are 0-5.
“That is why they are top four, they’re good,” Governors head coach David Midlick said following the loss. “I feel we are able to compete against those teams, but you have to climb that mountain and finish with a win against them. I like how we played yesterday and today; we have to continue to improve.
“It’s on to the next game, we got to correct what we did wrong by watching film, talking to the team and practicing and ready to give the best team our best shot.”
While the team has dropped their past two games, Midlick says he has been impressed with the play of his senior guard Brianah Ferby, who has led the team in points the past two nights.
“I think [Ferby] has been really good the last two weeks,” Midlick said. “I think she has been a little more aggressive on the offensive end, she’s taken good shots. The thing I have noticed most is her defense. Her defense has improved immensely since the new year, in five or six weeks or so.
“She is staying in front of players; she is playing good help-side defense. I definitely compliment her on her play on both ends of the floor.”
Next up, the Governors will travel to Morehead, Ky to take on an Eagles team that currently sits 10th in the conference standings and is two games out of the final spot for postseason contention.