ETSU looks to snap three-game losing streak vs. JU
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Jan. 28, 2013) – Looking to snap their third losing streak of at least two games this season and aiming to take down the Jacksonville Dolphins for the first time since Feb. 14, 2011, the ETSU Lady Bucs host JU on Monday, Jan. 28, at 7 p.m. inside the ETSU/MSHA Athletics Center.
ETSU (4-11, 2-6) hopes the usually friendly confines of the MSHA Athletics Center become a bit friendlier as they search for their first win in the Dome since Nov. 30 against Memphis. After struggling with shooting from the field, and most notably from behind the arc, against North Florida, the Lady Bucs at least have the Destiny Mitchell (Bluffton, Ga.) of old back as she has posted three-consecutive double-doubles in the past three contests. The search for complimentary scorers to aid Mitchell still continues but it took a step forward vs. UNF with Serena Clark (Tucker, Ga.) and Cara Bowling (Elizabethton, Tenn.) each tallying 14 points. A more efficient offense, with less emphasis on the outside shot, may prove beneficial going forward for an ETSU squad that has averaged 33 points in the paint in their last five contests.
The matchup between the Lady Bucs and the Dolphins will be the 18th all-time meeting between the two schools, a series in which ETSU leads with a 13-4 overall series advantage. JU swept the season series last year and are riding a three-game winning streak against the Blue and Gold. The most recent meeting was on Feb. 9, 2012 when the Dolphins bested ETSU, 88-82, in Johnson City.
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 (4-11, 2-6) looked to gain their first home victory in almost two months when they welcomed the North Florida Ospreys to the ETSU/MSHA Athletics Center. In the first half, the Lady Bucs relied way too much on the three-point shot, firing up 13 attempts and making only one. This reliance, and the inability to get anything going from the field, resulted in a 29-18 deficit at the break. In the second stanza, ETSU used a combination of attacking the basket and finally getting some triples to fall. The Blue and Gold took the lead with four minutes remaining, but settling for threes proved costly as the Lady Bucs went cold, while the Ospreys closed the game with a nine to five run in the final 2:30, sealing the game, 62-56. Destiny Mitchell notched her third straight double-double with 12 points and 14 rebounds.
LADY BUCS VS. JACKSONVILLE
Monday’s contest in the ETSU/MSHA Athletics Center will be the 18th all-time meeting between the two teams. The Lady Bucs and the Dolphins last met last season on Feb. 9 when JU topped ETSU, 88-82. This loss made the Lady Bucs 0-2 in the season series against the Dolphins after JU dominated ETSU, 70-44, on Jan. 14 in Jacksonville, Fla. In the most recent matchup, the first half featured seven ties and nine lead changes, but a 12-4 JU run over the final 2:56, resulted in a 41-34 Lady Bucs deficit at the break. This close play continued into the second period with six more ties and two additional lead changes, but with the Dolphins shooting efficiently from the field and knocking down clutch free throws during the final three minutes, the deficit became too much to overcome, ending in an 88-82 decision in favor of JU. Destiny Mitchell posted her second straight double-double with 21 points and 10 rebounds, while Cara Bowling came off the bench to record 11 points and three steals.
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), at Northern Kentucky (9 points) and at Kennesaw State (18 points). Randall is currently averaging 8.8 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 (Bluffton, Ga.) has shown no fear at the free throw stripe with the game on the line. At Lipscomb and at Kennesaw State, McQueen stepped the line and buried clutch free throws down the stretch to seal the game in the Lady Bucs’ favor. McQueen currently is tied for sixth in the A-Sun in free throw shooting at 75 percent.
The Blue and Gold have outrebounded the opposition in 10 of the 15 games this season and enter Saturday’s game with a plus-3.8 rebounding margin (40.6-36.8), 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-3.8 rebound margin currently ranks in the top 80 nationally.
Currently the Lady Bucs are currently averaging 4.6 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 and tied this season-high rejection mark in a loss to Stetson at the Dome. The Blue and Gold have blocked five or more shots in eight games this season and are led by Tosha Austin’s (Chattanooga, Tenn.) 1.1 blocks per game which ranks in the top five individually in the league. Austin also currently ranks 19th all-time in blocked shots in Atlantic Sun history with 117 rejections.
MITCHELL’S HOT START
Destiny Mitchell has scored in double figures in eight out of the fourteen games she has played in this season and is averaging 12.6 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 sixth in the A-Sun in scoring (12.6), second in rebounding (9.3), fifth in steals (2.1) and tied for third in field goal percentage (50.0).
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 15 games of the 2012-13 season she has scored 176 to move her career total to 890 .. 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 eight games of league play, Clark is averaging 8.9 points and 7.6 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 78-35 (.690) 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 101-39 (.721) against conference foes since moving into the A-Sun … the Lady Bucs have also won 81 of their last 110 games against conference foes (includes the 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 A-Sun Tournaments).
BOOST FROM THE BENCH
Through the early portion of the season, ETSU has gotten strong contributions from its bench. On the season ETSU averages roughly 20 bench points per game, including a season-high 57 points off the bench against Morehead State. Key reserves Cara Bowling (7.9 ppg), Maria Bond (Macon, Ga.) (6.1 ppg) and Tiana Burley (Camilla, Ga.) (5.8 ppg) have been vital for the Lady Bucs.
Destiny Mitchell recorded 11 double-doubles in her rookie season and she finished the 2011-12 season with four consecutive double-doubles before going down with her knee injury against UNF on Feb. 12 … in those 11 games, Mitchell averaged 17.5 points, 11.5 rebounds, and 2.7 steals in 33.5 minutes of work, while also shooting 53 percent from the field (81-152)... Mitchell had 10 more double-doubles in 2011-12... after earning her first double-double of this season on Nov. 30 against Memphis (14 pts., 16 rebs.) and after posting three consecutive double-doubles at Kennesaw State (18 pts., 10 rebs.), at Mercer (17 pts., 13 rebs.) and vs. North Florida (12 pts. 14 rebs.), Mitchell now has 25 so far in her career.
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