The Trojans faced Western Kentucky on the road this past Wednesday, Feb. 12, and were thrashed by Hilltoppers 93-66. However, they went on to conquer Georgia State, 111-90, upon their return to the Trojan Arena on Saturday, Feb. 15.
Senior guard Joanna Harden put up 26 points on the night, but was the only Trojan to reach double digits. Troy’s defense became nonexistent, allowing all five Western Kentucky starters to score in the double-digits, while the Trojan offense allowed 24 turnovers as a team.
Saturday brought on a different team and a very different game as the women returned home and dominated the Panthers, scoring over 100 points for the fourth time this season. The win extended Troy’s home-winning streak to four, the largest such streak since 2008-2009.
Sophomore guard Ashley Beverly-Kelley, who could only muster 8 points on against Western Kentucky, lit up the scoreboard against the Panthers, shooting 12-16 from the field, including an astounding 5-5 from three-point range.
Her performance yielded 32 total points, followed by 13 assists and 8 rebounds, leaving her 2 rebounds away from the first ever triple-double in school history. Beverly-Kelley, when asked what she did different in preparation, gave a reasonable explanation.
“My hair. That’s all,” Beverly-Kelley said. She confirmed that the hair-do is here to stay.
Head coach Chanda Rigby explained she did everything she could to move Beverly-Kelly into position for the final two rebounds and the triple-double.
“I’m very proud of her,” Rigby said. “I know she’s proud of her teammates, but I’m proud of her.”
Beverly-Kelly wasn’t the only one with a big game. Three other Lady Trojans reached double-figures, including Harden, who tallied 22 points and moving her streak of games scoring 20-plus points to nine. The other two double-digit scorers, junior forwards Brianna Lancaster and Ronita Garrett,
shot 14 and 15 points respectively, with Garret going 3-5 from beyond the arc.
Troy had an outstanding free throw percentage compared to Georgia State with 85.7 while the Panthers made only 65.5 percent. The Trojans also did well in 3-pointers scoring 15 out of 32. Georgia State managed to make 3 out of their 17 attempts.
Georgia State’s only lead came in the first points of the game, followed by a remarkable total of 17 first-half turnovers, including five steals. Harden also made an early statement, scoring 8 of the team’s first 12 points. Troy never lost their lead, going up by as much as 27 points late in the second half.
The Lady Trojans will be hitting the road for matches against conference foe Louisiana-Lafayette Wednesday, Feb. 19, and rival South Alabama on Saturday, Feb. 22. Tip-off for Wednesday’s game is set for 7 p.m. at Earl K. Long Gym in Lafayette, La.