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Govs knock off rivals Murray State in OT

Nobody was sitting when APSU men’s basketball (7-14, 3-4 Ohio Valley Conference) stepped toe-to-toe with Ohio Valley Conferece West Division leaders Murray State (11-10, 5-2 OVC).

The Govs pulled off a historic win, taking the Racers into overtime only to outlast them 84-81.

Josh Robinson and John Murry had 22 points each for the Govs, while sophomore forward Jared Savage and senior forward Kenny Jones both recorded a pair of double-doubles.

“I’m thrilled. I’m proud of our guys, it was a great team effort,” Head Coach Dave Loos said of his first win since returning from a leave of absence. “It was a big game for us.”

Along with the Lady Govs’ win in the earlier tip-off, APSU recorded their first doubleheader sweep over the Racers since 2007, and the first at home since Feb. 14, 2004.

Murray State jumped out to a quick lead, going up 14-6 midway through the first half, and doing well to keep the distance throughout the first half.

Murray shot 14-28 in the first half while hitting four 3-pointers.

The Racers controlled the game while the Govs were shooting a cold 9-34 from the field.

However, the Govs got back into the game by converting Racer turnovers into APSU baskets.

Sixteen points off of turnovers let the Govs pull the game to a 4-point difference at half.

The second half featured the two rivals trading baskets and possessions with Robinson burying a 3-pointer at the 17 minute mark to give the Govs their first lead of the game.

For the next few minutes the teams continued to alternate points until it looked liked APSU might pull away with the game.

With a little under six minutes to play, Savage knocked his first 3-pointer of the game on his seventh attempt to put the Govs ahead.

A trio of Robinson points and APSU was ahead 61-56.

Murry’s layup extended the lead to 63-56 with three-and-a-half minutes to play.

The Govs continued to build the lead when Savage hammered home a hard dunk for an 8-point lead at the 1:05 mark.

Murray forced points in the final minutes including a layup with two seconds left to force overtime at 70-70.

In overtime the Govs extended to a quick 5-point lead, and controlled the pace of the game from there on out.

With no more lead changes the Govs were able to close out the win in the first overtime.

Behind Robinson and Murry, Savage finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds to record a double-double. Jones finished with 11 points and 11 rebounds.

Jonathan Stark led scoring for the Racers with 27 points.

APSU’s next game will be on Friday Jan. 26, at 8 p.m. against the Skyhawks at the Dunn Center.

Last time the Skyhawks came to town, APSU lost on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer.

This is the first meeting since the two teams played in the 2016 OVC Championship game.

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