ETSU women’s basketball faces St. Bonaventure Friday, Lafayette Sunday
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Nov. 10, 2022) – ETSU women’s basketball is shipping up to the Northeast Region for its next two games in hopes of finding its first wins, taking on St. Bonaventure on Friday and Lafayette on Sunday.
Friday’s game will tip-off from Olean, N.Y. at 7 p.m. Sunday’s battle will go down at 12 p.m. in Easton, Pa. Both games will be streamed on ESPN+.
Friday, Nov. 11 – ETSU at St. Bonaventure – 7:00 p.m. / ESPN+ / Live Stats / Tickets
Sunday, Nov. 13 – ETSU at Lafayette – 12 p.m. / ESPN+ / Live Stats / Tickets
ABOUT THE BUCS
- ETSU unofficially opened the 2022-23 season with an exhibition against Mars Hill, dominating en route to an 87-41 win over the Lions inside Brooks Gym.
- On Monday, ETSU traveled defending national champion and top-ranked South Carolina to officially open the season. Prior to this season, the Bucs have never opened with a defending NCAA champion, but last played one in December of 1994 when it took on North Carolina.
- ETSU boasts a youthful roster in 2022-23 with nine newcomers and five returners.
- All five returners are sophomores, led by guard Courtney Moore (Gainesville, Fla.). Moore averaged 8.9 points per game last season and led the team in three-point shooting, steals and assists. Moore was the first player to score a point this season with her three-pointer against South Carolina on Monday.
- The Bucs are led in experience by two graduate transfers in Jiselle Thomas (Norwalk, Ohio) and Jayla Ruffus-Milner (North Hills, Calif.). Thomas led scoring efforts in both the exhibition (24 points) and against South Carolina (seven points), while Ruffus-Milner led on the boards at USC (six rebounds).
- In-state post player Jakhyia Davis (Knoxville, Tenn.) also returns for her sophomore season, leading all returners in rebounding at 6.2 per game and in blocked shots with 22. Davis and Aaliyah Vananda (Maryville, Tenn.) are ETSU’s two in-state players this season.
- Though not from Tennessee, the Bucs do have a local product in sophomore Sarah Thompson from nearby Gate City High School in Southwest Virginia. Thompson was one of just two players to play in all 28 games last season, averaging 24.7 minutes per game.
- This season, ETSU will seek its first winning campaign and postseason appearance since 2018, where the team finished 20-13 overall, 11-3 in the SoCon and with an appearance in the Women’s National Invitational Tournament (WNIT). ETSU has made three NCAA tournament appearances all-time (2008, 2009, 2010) and four WNIT appearances (1995, 2006, 2014, 2018).
ABOUT THE BONNIES
- St. Bonaventure enters Friday with an 0-1 record, opening with a 77-61 loss to Bowling Green.
- Bowling Green is one of two opponents ETSU and St. Bonaventure have in common this season. The Bucs will also play George Washington in the first round of the UNLV Thanksgiving MTE tournament in Las Vegas, Nev. GWU and the Bonnies are both in the Atlantic-10 conference.
- Last season, SBU finished with 12 wins to double its win total from the previous season. The Bonnies are led by head coach Jesse Fleming with a 50 wins over seven seasons.
- Bonaventure has seven returners and six newcomers on its roster, bringing a more-experience team into this season. The Bonnies have nine players that are juniors, seniors or graduate students and just four that are freshmen or sophomores.
- I’Yanna Hops is the player to watch for the Bonnies, averaging 8.2 points and 6.0 rebounds per game last season. She logged a double-double in the team’s season opener against Bowling Green with 14 points and 10 boards.
ABOUT THE LEOPARDS
- Lafayette — Sunday’s opponent — lost its season opener on the road at VCU by a 65-42 final. On Friday, the Leopards travel to nearby Newark, N.J. to take on NJIT.
- ETSU will serve as Lafayette’s home opener on Sunday.
- The Leopards finished last season with a 12-18 record overall and a 7-11 record in Patriot League play.
- Lafayette returns three of its five starters from last season — Abby Antognoli, Jess Booth and Makayla Andrews — while welcoming four new faces to the roster this season. All four newcomers contributed in the team’s season opener at VCU.
- Junior forward Kayla Drummond led the squad in the VCU game with 10 points and five rebounds.
- Lafayette is led by Coach Kia Damon-Olson in her sixth season at the helm. She has 51 wins in that span.
- ETSU and St. Bonaventure will meet for just the second time. The first meeting came last season in Johnson City, as the Bonnies edged the Bucs by a 56-49 final inside Brooks Gym.
- ETSU and Lafayette will also meet for the second time, but the gap between meetings is much longer.
- The last game between the Bucs and Leopards came on December 30, 1990 at the Dartmouth Invitational in Hanover, N.H. Lafayette won 79-52. That ETSU team was led by Debbie Richardson, who became the program’s first SoCon Coach of the Year in 1992-93.
For more information on Buccaneer women’s hoops, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the women’s basketball tab.