Austin Peay (4-10) at SE Missouri State (9-6)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Thursday, January 3, 8 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Show Me Center (7,000) -- Cape Girardeau, Missouri. Television: None. Home Record: APSU 3-2, SEMO 5-1. Away Record: APSU 0-5, SEMO 3-3. Neutral Record: APSU 1-3, SEMO 1-2. Conference Record: APSU 0-0, SEMO 1-0. Series Record: Austin Peay leads, 32-16.
GAME NOTES: The Austin Peay Governors will try to turn things around as they tip off their Ohio Valley Conference season against the SE Missouri State Redhawks at the Show Me Center.
Dave Loos and his Governors have lost their last six games overall and eight in a row against Division I competition to fall to a 4-10 record. Austin Peay suffered a 76-74 setback to High Point in the Dr. Pepper Classic consolation game on Dec. 29 in its last outing, which kept it winless on the road in five tries. The Governors finished the game with a 41-39 rebounding edge and committed just 11 turnovers, but came up short on the scoreboard.
SE Missouri State is on a three-game winning streak for the third time this season after its 65-60 decision over Tennessee-Martin in its OVC opener on Dec. 29. The Redhawks' victory improved them to 9-6 overall and 5-1 at the Show Me Center on the year. Coach Dickey Nutt's team is outscoring its competition by an average of 5.6 points per game thanks to its 36.7 percent shooting from 3-point range.
The Redhawks snapped a seven-game losing streak to APSU with a 65-60 win over the Governors last season at home. Austin Peay still owns a 32-16 all-time series lead as it has not fallen to SEMO on the road in consecutive seasons since falling in 1998-99 and 1999-2000.
APSU is bound to snap its losing streak in the near future if senior swingman Anthony Campbell continues to thrive. Since being held to four points in the team's 18-point loss at Memphis, Campbell has averaged 20.8 points over a span of five games and scored 20 or more in his last four to raise his scoring average to 15.1 ppg. Junior guard Travis Betran has been an excellent addition to the fold for the Governors as well. The Harlem native has earned three OVC Newcomer of the Week awards and leads the team with 15.9 ppg. Will Triggs is adding 10.4 ppg, while Chris Horton provides an inside presence with 6.7 rebounds and three blocks per contest.
The Redhawks trailed UTM by as many as 15 points, but Tyler Stone scored 23 points and Nino Johnson recorded a double-double of 15 points and 14 rebounds to help the squad improve to 1-0 in OVC play. Southeast hit 50 percent of its field goal attempts and 9-of-14 at the free throw line in the second half to complete the rally. Stone is leading the Redhawks in the scoring column with 17.7 ppg, which he is accompanying with 8.6 boards per outing. Johnson has scored in double figures 11 times and ranks 14th in the nation in double- doubles, averaging 12.1 points and 10.1 boards per outing. Corey Willford (13.8 ppg) and Lucas Nutt (4.6 apg) are also a big factors offensively.
The Stone and Johnson duo give SEMO a pair of forwards that consistently fill up the stat sheet and create space for the team's backcourt to operate more efficiently. Campbell and Betran will both need to have strong showings to help Austin Peay steal one on the road.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Austin Peay 68, SE Missouri State 65
01/03 10:42:41 ET