Lady Toppers look for win No. 10 against Ball State

Senior guard Alexis Govan (21) and junior guard Micah Jones (5) celebrate after forcing a turnover during the first half of WKU’s Nov. 14 game against Central Arkansas. The Lady Toppers forced 22 turnovers in their 93-57 victory over the Sugar Bears. Brandon Carter/HERALD

Jonah Phillips

The Lady Topper basketball team hosts Ball State in Diddle Arena Sunday afternoon, trying to win its 10th game of the season at the heels of its inaugural Conference USA slate.

The Lady Toppers (9-2) are coming off a 91-68 win over Austin Peay that saw senior All-American candidate Chastity Gooch notch 24 first-half points and 32 on the evening. WKU has scored 90+ points in its last four matches.

Last season, WKU found themselves down 38-16 towards the end of the first half, but went on a 39-17 run into the second half that gave the Lady Topper a six-point lead.  WKU was unable to hold on to the comeback though, and fell to BSU 85-77 in Muncie, Indiana.  

“Obviously everybody remembers it,” junior guard Micah Jones said.  “They are a good team; we just have to be ready for it.  We came out really slow last year and we had to play from behind the whole game and we never really caught up—we gave them a run at the end but we just can’t start slow this year.”

With a win, WKU would reach 10 wins before January for the second time in three years, and for the sixth time in program history.

“They are a very good passing team, and they run a pressing offense at times,” head coach Michelle Clark-Heard said.  “So we are going to have to be really focused on our defensive help and our defensive game plan.”  

Ball State (4-5) is coming off a 59-47 setback at Pittsburgh on Thursday night.

“We just have to stay focused and keep winning.  They do a lot of things defensively that we haven’t really seen yet, so we have been working on that a lot in practice,” Jones said. “We can’t get stuck out there on the court and not know what to do.”

 “We are just trying to do is focus on ourselves and the things we need to do—making sure we are continuing to get better going into conference,” Clark-Heard said. “This is Diddle arena.  This is out home court, and we need to make sure we are protecting our home court.”