The Troy women’s basketball team played the first five minutes without a field goal and never recovered as WKU defeated the Trojans, 86-69, at Trojan Arena on Saturday afternoon.
Troy (4-9, 0-2) was down by 10 points before a Joanna Harden jumper fell with 15:06 to go to halt an opening stretch that included seven empty possessions. WKU led by 14 at halftime after shooting over 50 percent (21-of-41) in the opening frame.
Troy kept itself in the game with solid defense to open the second half, but the Trojans couldn’t buy a bucket inside as multiple chances to cut the lead to single digits did not fall.
Joanna Harden led the way for Troy with 25 points, including a 9-of-12 mark at the free throw line. Ashley Beverly-Kelley came off the bench for the first time this season and scored 20 points, including four 3-pointers.
Brooke Bowie also hit four 3-pointers, tied a career high with 18 points and pulled in a team-high seven rebounds, but the rebounding effort wasn’t enough for the Trojans.
After getting good play from its post players in the Sun Belt opener at Georgia State, Troy’s post players were outplayed by WKU’s Chastity Gooch on Saturday. Gooch recorded 30 points and 16 rebounds while Troy’s six post players combined for six points and 16 rebounds.
WKU (9-4, 0-2) outrebounded Troy 51-33, but only outscored the Trojans in the paint by six points, 36-30. In the absence of Preseason Sun Belt Player of the Year Alexis Govan, Micah Jones added 20 points for the Lady Toppers, including four 3-pointers.
Troy held the Lady Toppers to 38 percent (10-of-26) shooting in the second half, but the Trojans shot just 34 percent (12-of-35) themselves and finished at 36 percent (24-of-67) in the game.
The Trojans return to the floor on Wednesday when they travel to take on Arkansas State. Tipoff at the Convocation Center is set for 7 p.m.
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