The Jacksonville State women’s basketball team won their first and last home game of the season Saturday night.
The win against Southeast Missouri came on senior night and when the Gamecocks were on a 26-game losing streak for the season. The victory snapped a losing streak that dates back to January 14, 2012 when the Gamecocks beat Austin Peay at the buzzer.
“This win is not for me. It is for these players and my two seniors (Danielle Vaughn and Amanda McCarthy).” Head coach Annette Watts said.
The Gamecocks appeared fully in charge of Saturday’s game with the lead being theirs for most of the night. SEMO had the lead only once and the score was 2-0. The Gamecocks scored their first two points at 18:22 tying the score.
The score had moved to 20-12 by 8:28 and right after Destany Mclin nailed a three point shot pushing the score up to 23-12 still in JSU’s control.
With three minutes left in the half the Redhawks would score a 3-pointer to bring the score to 29-22. However, before halftime the Gamecocks would get two more making the first half score 31-22 with JSU on top.
JSU would lead by a margin of 12 at around the 12-minute mark of the second half. It was the Gamecocks largest lead of the night. After this SEMO turned things around and began crawling their way back up. They put the score within 5 with 7:53 left and continued putting the pressure on. Although JSU would cling to a lead, the Redhawks were not surrendering and would leave JSU only up by four at 3:16.
With 1:15 left in the game SEMO brought the score to 55-54, and the crowd began to come out of their chairs. JSU held onto a three-point lead until Southeast Missouri’s Allyson Bradshaw hit a three-pointer and tied it at 57 with 35.4 seconds left.
Candace Morton would be fouled at 17.7 seconds and would make one of her two free throws giving JSU a one point edge. Another foul by SEMO at 14.4 and 1.7 seconds remaining led to two more made free throws that sealed the victory for the Gamecocks. The final score was 60-57.
The Gamecocks hard fought victory was summed up by Coach Watts, “I don’t think we could have played any stronger or any scrappier than we did tonight.”
“The great thing is that we’ve been on the road for quite a while now, coming back home our home crowd got to see how much better we’ve gotten and how improved we are. You got to remember this is a team that hasn’t won a game, and to come out here and play like that. I am incredibly proud of them.” Coach Watts continued.
The Gamecocks have snapped their losing streak and although Coach Watts said that the team has big shoes to fill with the departure of Vaughn and McCarthy she feels that next year will be even better.