TSU women#039;s team looks to avenge early loss

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 26, 2003

Last season, Troy State barely edged its way into the Atlantic Sun Conference Tournament.

This season, the Lady Trojans can win the regular season title outright with a trio of victories to end the season.

"It sounds like a clich, but you have to take it one game at a time," Troy State head coach Michael Murphy said. "You have to worry about it one game at a time. That being said, if we win out, we win the conference, straight up. If we do that, we will have earned it by beating the three best teams in our division (Florida Atlantic, Central Florida and Mercer)."

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The action begins tonight at 5 p.m. as the Lady Owls (11-12, 9-3) come to Troy to face the Lady Trojans (15-9, 10-3). Both teams have clinched a spot in the Atlantic Sun Tournament.

Florida Atlantic will be trying to sweep Troy State after taking a 73-68 victory in Boca Raton, Fla., earlier in the season.

"Revenge is not on our minds," Murphy said. "We did not play well down there, and I think that will motivate us."

Troy State should also be motivated by the desire to win a game at home. While the Lady Trojans have posted a 6-1 conference mark on the road, they are only 3-2 at home. They had dropped two straight at home (to Georgia State and Belmont) before defeating Samford in a low-scoring affair 55-45.

Part of the reason for the struggles at home is the Trojans' tendency to shoot poorly in Trojan Arena. In the two losses, Troy State shot 33 percent (Georgia State) and 29 percent (Belmont). Troy State heated up in the second half against Samford to shoot 45 percent.

"I don't know what the cause of that is," Murphy said. "We sort of came out of that in the second half against Samford."

Troy State will need to avoid the chilly shooting tonight because Florida Atlantic will zone up on the Lady Trojans to try to deny center Thea Herring a chance to score.

"It does concern me," Murphy said. "If we don't hit our shots, there's no way we can get the ball down low."

After tonight's game, the Lady Trojans will play its final home game of the season Saturday against Central Florida. Tipoff is set for 5 p.m.