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Ohio Valley Finals

March 13, 2003 Conference Notes No Comments



Ohio Valley Conference Finals

by Zach Van Hart

No. 1 Austin Peay vs. No. 3 Tennessee Tech

They say it takes a team to win a championship. Nothing personified this statement more than the Austin Peay Governors Saturday afternoon. All five starters scored in double figures as the Govs won a tightly contested battle with the Golden Eagles by the count of 63-57. The win clinched Austin Peay’s first NCAA bid since 1996.

The Governors controlled the entire first half, leading by eight most of the way. Tennessee Tech however went on a run during the final few minutes and cut the lead to three by the half, 37-34.

The Golden Eagles kept the momentum going to start the second half, opening with a 13-7 run to take a 47-44 lead. The Govs then answered with a 7-0 run of their own and from there it went back and forth until the final tick.

The shot that appeared to damper Tech’s spirits came with less than four minutes remaining. Austin Peay worked the ball around the horn, eventually finding Rhet Wierzba in the corner. He buried a three-pointer, giving the Govs a four-point lead. They never looked back.

Anthony Davis and Corey Gipson led Austin Peay with thirteen points each. Adrian Henning and Wierzba each netted twelve and Josh Lewis rounded out the scoring with eleven. Lewis was voted the tournament’s MVP for his three-game performance. Gipson and Henning also made First Team All Tournament.

Tennessee Tech had been shooting lights out during the past three weeks but hit only 39.3 percent from the field. Cameron Crisp scored just four points after averaging 24.3 during his last three games. The poor shooting proved to be too much for the Eagles to overcome.

Now the Governors wait for a week to see whom they will be dancing against in the NCAA Tournament.

     

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