WBB Exhibition: Lady Toppers welcome Bellarmine to Diddle for preseason tune up


The quest for a third consecutive 20-win season with Michelle Clark-Heard unofficially officially begins today, as the Lady Toppers basketball squad will take John Oldham Court for the first time in the 2014/15, as they’ll welcome back former Lady Topper Crystal Kelly and the Bellarmine Knights for the season’s first – and only – exhibition contest.

This will mark the first time in 18 games that (now senior) guard/forward Alexis Govan can take the floor for WKU, after she missed the entirety of conference play last year with a stress fracture in her left tibia (didn’t think we’d be getting all doctoral on you today, did ya?). It was great to see Alexis back on the court at Hilltopper Hysteria, and it’ll be great to see her back in a game against another team.

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Even scarier than Govan returning to the floor, is that she’ll be on the floor with C-USA Preseason Conference Player of the Year Chastity Gooch


2014 Sun Belt freshman of the year Kendall Noble. Gooch is a double-double machine, as she not only scores points but grabs rebounds down low for WKU. Noble can do a little bit of everything – score, steal, rebound, assist – and she’ll fill whatever role needs to as the game, and season, goes on. Just with those three on the floor, there are averages of 18.4 (Gooch), 16.5 (Govan) and 11.0 (Noble) points per game last year, and I expect fully to see Govan’s and Noble’s averages to increase this year.

Also, this will be the first action for a trio of Lady Toppers – Tashia Brown, Ivy Brown and Jaiveonna Norris – as they come to the Hill for their freshman year. If anything, tonight will be about seeing how they handle themselves on the floor in college action, and could very well be the most action they see for quite sometime.

…Or, maybe not. Here is tonight’s projected starting lineup:

Micah Jones – G
Tashia Brown – G
Kendall Noble – G
Alexis Govan – G/F
Chastity Gooch – F

The thing that might pop out to you is the fact that Tashia Brown – not Ivy Brown – is in the starting lineup. Well, yes, Ivy is the reigning Kentucky Miss Basketball, Tashia chose WKU over schools from the SEC, ACC and even other C-USA programs, and averaged 22.6 points and eight boards per game, scoring over 1,000 in her high school career. But, let’s do remember, it is only preseason, and MCH has seen a bit more of the team than we all have, so I think she knows what she’s doing.

Basketball is nearly here, and the game tonight will tip off at 7:00.