Lady Tigers Beat SEMO, Advance to Semifinals
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Nashville --- The Tennessee State University women’s basketball team’s history making season continues as the Lady Tigers advance to the OVC Tournament Semifinals for the first time since the 1998-99 season. TSU handed SEMO a 77-66 first-round loss Tuesday night in the Gentry Center.


Tennessee State (18-12) used a timely 11-2 run late in the game to pull away from Southeast Missouri (15-15) down the stretch.


Tiffany Jackson led a balanced scoring attack for TSU with 17 points and four steals. Jasmine Smith tallied16 points and eight boards while Kendra Appling recorded 10 points and four steals. LaDona Pierce dished out a game-best seven assists.


Tarina Nixon led SEMO with 14 points while Rachel Blunt added 12. Bianca Beck posted 11 points for the Redhawks.


Early turnovers by SEMO led to TSU jumping out to a 12-4 lead in the opening four minutes of play. The Redhawks used a timeout to regroup and then outscored the Lady Tigers 12-2 to go ahead 16-14.


SEMO maintained a small lead over the next five minutes but TSU managed to reclaim the lead and carry a 39-36 lead into the halftime break.


In the second period, TSU built its lead up to 46-38 at the 16:17 mark but SEMO rallied and tied the contest at 55-apiece with 7:38 left to play.


After a closely played next couple of minutes, back-to-back triples from Charisse Hicks and Kendra Appling gave the Lady Tigers a 67-59 lead with 3:13 on the clock.


TSU never trailed again.


The Lady Tigers shot 51.9 percent from the field while the Redhawks only shot 39.7 percent. SEMO committed 21 turnovers and TSU coughed it up 18 times.


Tennessee State will take on Eastern Illinois on Friday at 2 p.m. in the Sommet Center.