APSU women’s basketball team has lost three of their last five conference games.
The Governors dropped their latest contest at Belmont University 69-46. The final score fell over 20 points below the team’s season average (66.8).
The Bruins narrowly escaped the Govs at the Dunn on Jan. 25, winning the game at the buzzer, 53-52. Belmont was far more aggressive in the second installment, shooting above 50 percent in the first half from both the floor (14-27) and from three point range (5-10).
After outscoring the Governors 20-6 in the second, APSU would enter the locker room down 39-16. At the break, the Bruins were ahead of the Govs in the rebounding department 21-11 and finished the evening with a 44-25 advantage.
“We tried to make a few adjustments (from the first meeting) that we thought would work and they made some adjustments too,” head coach David Midlick said on the difference in the two games. “We didn’t turn (Belmont) over as much in our press, we didn’t get a chance to get into the press, and I thought we were passive on offense.”
The Governors’ seemingly passive first-half offense (33 percent from the floor, 0-11 from three) began to come alive in the second half. All five of the Govs’ three point makes came in the second half and were able to earn trips to the charity stripe 10 times in the final two periods.
Midlick spoke on the second-half adjustments having the mindset to keep pushing.
“My aspect to that is that we were down 20 and had nothing to lose. We preached that we’ve got to play like that from the tap,” Midlick said. “We aren’t trying to play any different in the third or fourth period than we are the first and second.”
The defensive intensity of the Govs picked up in the second-half as well, forcing 11 turnovers in the final two periods. The Governors minimized the Bruins’ field goal percentage to 34 percent in the third and fourth combined.
APSU fell to 4-8 in Ohio Valley Conference play and 13-10 overall, but Midlick prepares to look past the loss and focus on Thursday’s game at home against Mu**ay State: “We will watch the film and we’ll get better. Each day you preach the same thing: recover tomorrow, come in Monday ready to get better (than) today and start our prep for Mu**ay.”
The Racers are in a similar boat as the Governors. Mu**ay sits at an identical 4-8 in conference, but with an 11-12 record in total, two games worse than the Govs. MSU most recently played at Tennessee State University Feb. 8, falling to the Tigers 96-81.