Lady Toppers rout Murray State

Kyle Williams

WKU notched its 14th consecutive victory over Murray State on Saturday in Diddle Arena thanks to balanced scoring and strong post play from the Lady Toppers. WKU is now 10-2 following a loss under coach Michelle Clark-Heard.

The Lady Toppers started off hot, hitting six of their first 11 shots, led by junior forward Chastity Gooch, who recorded six points in the first five minutes of play. Senior guard Chaney Means notched two steals in the first minute and a half.

Junior guard Alexis Govan recorded her 900th career point with an early bucket. Her 14-point performance marked the 39th straight game in which she has scored in double-figures.  

Heard said the Lady Toppers improved in a lot of ways following their loss to Vanderbilt on Monday and that it was important for her team to get off to a strong start.

“I was really pleased with our effort and our intensity,” Heard said. “…I talked to them about getting off to a good start, and I think we did that.”

WKU ended the first half with an 11-point lead and a 28-4 advantage in points in the paint. The Lady Toppers also recorded six steals in the first half and outscored the Lady Racers 17-4 in the second chance points category.

Gooch said that the Lady Toppers have been working on defense and rebounding and used it against Murray State.

“I felt like we did a very good job,” Gooch said. “…We’ve been practicing on our defense a lot and I felt like we did a pretty good job this afternoon.”

Murray State, with the help of the three-point shot, came within seven points early in the second half. However, the Lady Toppers opened up a 20-point lead midway through the half and went on to secure the 85-60 victory.

Six different Lady Toppers scored at least five points against the Lady Racers, led by Gooch with 24 points, 12 rebounds, two blocks and two steals. Sophomore guard Micah Jones recorded 16 points and hit four of her six three-point attempts. Sophomore forward Jalynn McClain posted her second career double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

Redshirt freshman Kendall Noble logged her first minutes in Diddle Arena and finished with four points on two-of-two shooting. She’s coming off two torn ACLs.

Heard said she was excited for Noble that she was able to be effective in her first game back.

“I’m really happy for her” Heard said. “Kendall was one of the first ones that really believed in this program and what we were trying to do…I’m super proud of her.”

The Lady Toppers head to Southest Missouri State University on Monday for a battle with the Redhawks.