Hatters sit atop the league standings
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Jan. 14, 2013) – After having the record books rewritten against them versus Florida Gulf Coast, the Lady Bucs look to bounce back against the league-leading Stetson Hatters on Monday, Jan. 14, inside the ETSU/MSHA Athletics Center at 7 p.m.
It will not be an easy task for ETSU (3-8, 1-3) to right the ship against Stetson (12-4, 5-0) who is in first place in the latest Atlantic Sun standings. The Lady Bucs will continue to go forth shorthanded after sophomore guard Brianna Bogard (Georgetown, Texas) left the team prior to the game against FGCU in search of a better fit for her style of play. The departure of Bogard leaves only one true point guard on the roster, a true freshman in Brianna McQueen (Jonesboro, Ga.), to lead the team. The opportunity is now there for someone to step up and help supplement for the recent change.
The matchup between the Lady Bucs and the Hatters will be the 16th all-time meeting between the two schools, a series in which ETSU has dominated with a 13-2 overall series advantage. ETSU and SU played twice last season with each team winning on their home court. The most recent meeting was on Feb. 23, 2012 when the Lady Bucs won a tight one, 74-72.
For more on Saturday’s game, read the game notes below. For more on ETSU women’s basketball throughout the 2012-13 season, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the women’s hoops link.
WE ARE “ETSU”
The ETSU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics would like to ask both the print and broadcast media to honor our request to be called “ETSU” throughout the 2012-13 season ... East Tennessee State in first reference is acceptable, but subsequent references should be ETSU ... On TV graphics, please use ETSU ... Our nickname is the Lady Buccaneers, but Lady Bucs is also acceptable.
LAST TIME OUT
ETSU (3-8, 1-3) looked to improve to .500 in Atlantic Sun play, but knew it would be quite the challenge against FGCU (12-5, 5-0). These fears turned into reality as the Lady Bucs ran into a buzz saw against the Eagles. After shots were not falling early for both teams, FGCU quickly found their stroke and the rout was on. FGCU’s hot shooting and efficient passing led to a 51-25 ETSU deficit at the half. The second half was much like the first, with the Eagles raining threes en route to a 97-60 bludgeoning of the Lady Bucs. FGCU set the NCAA Division I women’s basketball record with 22 made three-pointers, eclipsing a mark of 21 made by the Eagles as well in 2008. ETSU did get leading scorer Destiny Mitchell (Bluffton, Ga.) going again with 16 points and eight boards. Brianna McQueen (Jonesboro, Ga.) also added 11 points and four rebounds.
LADY BUCS VS. STETSON
Monday’s contest in the MSHA Athletics Center will be the 16th all-time meeting between the two Atlantic Sun Conference foes. The Lady Bucs and the Hatters last met last season on Feb. 23 when ETSU topped Stetson, 74-72. This win evened the season series after the Hatters bested the Lady Bucs, 68-60, on Dec. 1 in DeLand, Fla. In the most recent matchup, the game was close throughout when Tarita Gordon added two baskets to put ETSU up by four with only seconds remaining, which would eventually be the deciding baskets in the Lady Buc victory. ETSU also got strong performances from Destiny Mitchell, who posted 10 points and a game-high 14 rebounds, as well as from Tosha Austin (Chattanooga, Tenn.), who tallied a career-high tying five blocked shots. The win helped the Lady Bucs secure the seven seed in the 2012 Atlantic Sun Championship.
The emergence of redshirt-sophomore Tiana Burley (Camilla, Ga.) has provided a badly-needed inside presence for the Lady Bucs. In the transfer’s first action as a Lady Buc due to NCAA regulations, the center came off the bench and posted a double-double of 19 points and 13 rebounds in a loss to Appalachian State. This performance awarded Burley A-Sun Newcomer of the Week honors on Dec. 26. Burley also was a big contribution off the bench for the Lady Bucs against USC Upstate, in which she posted eight points and three rebounds in 15 minutes of play.
After being inserted into the starting lineup at the beginning of conference play, Shawn Randall (Orlando, Fla.) has answered the call and has been stellar in league play. In her first start of the season at USC Upstate, Randall tallied 16 points and was 4-of-6 from behind the arc. The junior guard followed this performance with strong showings at Lipscomb (13 points, 4 rebounds) and at Northern Kentucky (9 points). Randall is currently averaging 10.3 points per game in Atlantic Sun action.
MCQUEEN STRONG FROM THE CHARITY STRIPE
In addition to running the team as a true freshman point guard, Brianna McQueen has shown no fear at the free throw stripe with the game on the line. At Lipscomb, McQueen stepped the line and buried clutch free throws down the stretch to seal the game in the Lady Bucs’ favor. McQueen currently ranks fourth in the A-Sun in free throw shooting at 78.3 percent.
The Blue and Gold have out-rebounded the opposition in seven of the 11 games this season and enter Monday’s game with a plus-3.5 rebounding margin (42.1-38.6), ranking first in the A-Sun … in its game at Morehead State, ETSU out-rebounded the Eagles by 20, 46-26 … the Lady Bucs’ plus-3.5 rebound margin currently ranks in the top 100 nationally.
Currently the Lady Bucs are averaging 4.2 blocks per contest; good for tops in the Atlantic Sun. ETSU swatted a season-high eight shots in their win against Memphis on Nov. 30 inside the MSHA Athletics Center. The Blue and Gold have blocked five or more shots in five games this season and are led by Tosha Austin’s 1.0 blocks per game which ranks in the top five individually in the league.
MITCHELL’S HOT START
Destiny Mitchell has scored in double figures in five out of eleven games on the season and is averaging 12.1 points per contest … Mitchell scored a season-high 26 points in the opener at High Point back on Nov. 10 and added 14 points and 16 rebounds in the 10-point win vs. Memphis to close out the month of November ... Mitchell is currently seventh in the A-Sun in scoring (12.1), third in rebounding (8.2), fourth in steals (2.1) and fifth in field goal percentage (48.5).
MITCHELL’S PURSUIT TO THE 1,000-POINT CLUB
Mitchell is well on her way to become the 21st Lady Buc to join the 1,000-point club ... She is on pace to break the 1,000-point mark near the end of February as she registered 347 points as a freshman and 367 points as a sophomore for 714 total points... through ETSU’s first eleven games of the 2012-13 season she has scored 121 to move her career total to 835 .. if Mitchell scores in similar fashion in the next two years as she did as a rookie and a sophomore, she will put herself in the top-10 in Lady Buc history.
CLARK TURNS IT ON FOR A-SUN PLAY
After a solid start to the season for the now eligible transfer, Serena Clark (Tucker, Ga.) has really turned it on when it comes to Atlantic Sun action. Through the first four games of league play, Clark is averaging 8.8 points and 8.0 rebounds per game, including back-to-back double-doubles at Lipscomb and at Northern Kentucky with 10 points & 14 rebounds and 16 points, 10 rebounds & seven steals, respectively.
SECOND HALF SURGES
The Lady Bucs have been a tough team to beat when it comes to the second half of the season (games played from January-March) … since January of 2008, ETSU is 77-32 (.706) in the months of January through March, including a program-best 19-3 mark in 2009-10.
HAVING FUN IN THE A-SUN
The Lady Bucs have enjoyed a lot of success since joining the A-Sun in 2005-06 … since joining the league, the Lady Buccaneers have averaged 15 conference wins a year, including a league-best and school record 18-2 mark in 2009-10, three Atlantic Sun Tournament titles (2008-2010), and two regular season championships (2008 and 2010) …in total, ETSU is 100-36 (.735) against conference foes since moving into the A-Sun … the Lady Bucs have also won 80 of their last 107 games against conference foes (includes the 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 A-Sun Tournaments).
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