Turnovers down as Eagles move to 3-0

Mary O’Keefe shoots the ball during the game against KSU. O’Keefe had a team-high 17 points.

Turnovers have been the Achilles’ heel for Southern Indiana women’s basketball for quite some time now.

In Saturday’s 94-58 win over visiting Kentucky State, USI (3-0) took much better care of the ball. After combining for 21.5 turnovers in its first two games, the Eagles had 24 assists to 11 turnovers in its home-opener against the Thorobreds.

The Eagles began the game by immediately going on a 12-0 run to set the tone for the rest of the game. At the end of the first half, USI led 49-21.

“Down in Florida, I think we saw a few uncharacteristic things that we did,” USI head coach Rick Stein said. “The biggest thing to me was, even though we got out to a big lead, we were still under control and didn’t let it get sloppy. We still ran our offense and made plays.”

Sophomore frontcourt duo of Mary O’Keefe and Anna Hackert combined for 28 points on 10-for-15 shooting. O’Keefe was 6-for-11 from the field for 17 points while Hackert was a perfect 4-for-4 from the field and also grabbed five rebounds.

Junior point guard Ariel Barnes served as the catalyst for the Eagles, dishing out four assists without throwing the ball away once.

“The high-low (pass) was there all day and that’s something we really emphasized during practice this week,” Barnes said.

The Eagles held the Thorobretts to just 34 percent shooting (20-for-59) and forced 16 turnovers, which led to 32 USI points on the other end.

After shooting 60 percent (33-for-55) in its first two games to start the season, the Eagles shot 83 percent (25-for-30) from the line.

“We shot more free throws this week than we did in the past two months combined,” Stein said. “They’re going to be a big factor for us.”

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