ATLANTA - Georgia State held Kennesaw State to 27 percent shooting in carving out a fourth straight win, 63-42, Sunday afternoon at the GSU Sports Arena.
State started with a 7-0 lead and didn't allow KSU its first basket until 13:26 in the first half and was never seriously threatened. GSU led 16-6 in allowing only three baskets after 12 minutes of play. KSU had a six-point surge to close to 20-12 at 4:43, but GSU went on a decisive 13-0 run to make it 33-12 with one minute left in the first half. A trey by KSU made it 33-15 at halftime.
In the second half, the Panthers built the lead into the twenty-point range and held a 47-27 advantage at 10:58 when KSU made its final try to narrow it to 14 points at 47-33 with 8:52. GSU scored six straight to push it back to 20 points at 53-33 with 6:39. The host Panthers built the largest lead of 27 points at 63-36 with 1:45.
GSU's defense, No. 18 in the nation in field goal defense (31.8) dropped that even lower with today's 15-of-55 stops at the 27.3 rate. Outside the arc, GSU is No. 3 in the nation at 15.9 percent and KSU managed just 16.7 percent today on 2 of 12.
Georgia State forced 19 Kennesaw turnovers, made 10 steals and blocked four shots. GSU held a 38-35 rebound advantage.
For the winners, Cody Paulk had 11 points, 7 rebounds and two blocked shots, Kayla Nolan had 11 points and three steals, while Kendra Long added 10 more points to lead GSU. Tiffany Anderson had eight rebounds to lead the team today and freshman Morgan Jackson had a personal-best sven rebounds coming off the bench.
Kennesaw got 12 points and nine rebounds from Sametria Gideon as she closed with a pair of layups in the closing minute to get into double figures.
Georgia State shot 50.8 percent on offense, making 30 of its 59 shots, including 57.7 percent in the first half. GSU pounded the ball inside with 42 points scored in the paint.
"We tried to be intense and aggressive, forcing them to take hurried or bad shots and for the most part were pretty effective," coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener said. "We took a little better care of the ball today ourselves and it is nice to have as many assists (15) and turnovers (15). We passed the ball well today and got ourselves in position for good shots. But, we fouled way too much for a team with the big leads we had."
After four straight wins, GSU stands at 5-1 as it heads into final exam week and a layoff until the next game on Dec. 13 in Nashville at Belmont.
- The 42 points allowed was the lowest since Jan. 28, 2010 in a 46-36 win over George Mason and is the lowest in Coach Baldwin-Tener's three seasons (67 games).
- GSU has held the opponent under 60 points in all 5 wins (42, 48, 50, 50 and 58).
- The 63 points is GSU's lowest offensive output of the season, even though they shot 50%. The season average is 70.2 now.
- GSU's season defense allows opponents only 31.1% on the season and only 16.0 outside the three-point arc. The defense also averages 10.5 steals per game.
- The fast-starting Panthers have outscored opponents a combined 215-140 points in the first halves. They've led at halftime in all five wins by margins of 23, 18 today, 16, 15, and 15.
- Paulk's 2 blocks up her season total to 18. Her first block today was the 150th of her career as she closes in on the school record of 166. She'll move into the top 10 in CAA history when she reaches 162.
- Sophomore guard Kayla Nolan leads the team in scoring with 11.5 per game.
- The Panthers own a +7.2 rebound advantage on the season, grabbing 46.8 boards a game.