Lady Toppers top SEMO at home

Elliott Pratt

After a week off the court, the Lady Toppers picked up right where they left off in the win column with a 60-46 victory over Southeast Missouri State (5-6) Sunday afternoon in Diddle Arena.

The Lady Toppers (8-2, 3-0) used a 14-0 run over seven minutes in the second half to pull away with their third straight win.

WKU is off to its best start since the 2005-06 team began with a 9-1 record.

Coach Michelle Clark-Heard said the team set a goal coming into the game and met it.

“Our goal was to only give them 55 points and we held them to 46,” Heard said. “I think it’s probably the second or third time where we’ve met our goal defensively.”

Junior guard Bianca McGee made her first start as a Lady Topper after not being eligible for the fall semester due to NCAA transfer rules.

The junior college transfer didn’t disappoint – McGee earned her first double-double with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

She knocked down a three-point shot for her first bucket to advance the Lady Topper lead to 16-8 with 8:53 to go in the first half.

McGee said sitting out to this point in the year was difficult, but is glad to get back on the court with her team.

“Since I only have two years it was very hard to sit out this long,” McGee said. “It felt really good to play with (teammates) in the game instead of just in practice.”

Heard said is expecting many performances like today’s from McGee in the future.

“This was her first Division-I college basketball game and she’s been waiting,” Heard said. “She’s going to do a lot of great things for us. She was one of the first ones to sign and believe in what we’re trying to do here. I think she will continue to get better and better.”

Sophomore forward Chastity Gooch tallied another double-double despite not starting the game for minor disciplinary reasons. Gooch put up 16 points and grabbed 12 rebounds in 30 minutes on the court.

Gooch leads the country in double-doubles with nine on the season.

Heard said Gooch provides a secure dependability to the team.

“It makes you feel good as a coach when you have someone you can count on day in and day out,” Heard said. “Chastity is in a mind frame right now where she wants to be the best. I’m excited everyday as a coach to know that every day she steps on the floor that she’s very confident.”