UNIVERSITY PARK, IL – Playing with a depleted bench, Governors State opened the New Year with a hard-fought 118-100 setback to 22nd-ranked Olivet Nazarene at the Athletics and Recreation Center.
The loss of center Tiana Mericle to injury in the opening period certainly didn't help, as the Jaguars finished the game with two healthy subs. To make matters worse, ONU came in as the highest-scoring team in the country, fueling a run-and-gun offense with wholesale changes off the bench every few minutes.
"I'm really proud of how our team competed tonight," said GSU Head Coach La Toshia Burrell. "We knew we were going to be tested and we fought hard to the very end."
The Jaguars (3-11, 2-5 CCAC) scored 100 points for the first time in the program's brief two-year history, producing nearly identical statistical numbers as their visitors. Both teams attempted 91 shots, with GSU scoring one extra bucket (42). The difference came from behind the three-point line, where the Tigers (11-5, 5-2 CCAC) made 16 shots compared to GSU's four. UNO also fared better at the free throw line (20-for-29 to 12-for-21), although GSU won the rebounding battle (55-51).
GSU continues league play Thursday at Trinity Christian.