ETSU women’s basketball to face UNCG on Thursday at 7 p.m.
GREENSBORO, N.C. (Feb. 22, 2023) – With two regular season games remaining and hopes of a regular season conference championship still alive and well, the ETSU women’s basketball team travels to Greensboro for an important matchup at UNCG. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. at Fleming Gymnasium.
ETSU enters with an 8-4 record in league play and sits in a three-way tie for first place with Wofford and Chattanooga. Meanwhile, the Bucs have a 21-7 record and can become just the second team in program history to reach 22 wins in a single season.
The Blue & Gold of Johnson City enter on a four-game win streak, while their Blue & Gold counterparts in Greensboro are on a three-game win streak — including wins over Wofford, Furman and Western Carolina.
Thursday, February 23, 2023 – East Tennessee State at UNC Greensboro
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Location: Greensboro, N.C.
Venue: Fleming Gymnasium
Radio: WXSM-AM 640
Radio Broadcaster: Keith Brake (Play-by-Play)
Live Stats: StatBroadcast
ABOUT THE BUCS
- ETSU enters final week of the regular season with an overall record of 21-7 and an 8-4 mark in SoCon action. ETSU is currently in a three-way tie for first with Wofford and Chattanooga, with ETSU sweeping Wofford, Wofford sweeping Chattanooga and Chattanooga sweeping ETSU.
- ETSU has already broken the school record for best win improvement from season-to-season, going from six wins last season to 21 already this season. The 15-win improvement broke the previous school record of 12 set in the 2014-15 season.
- ETSU is also two wins away from tying the all-time school record for single season wins, set in 2009-10 with a 23-9 record. That season is also tied with two others for the fewest losses in a season all-time (since expanding the schedule to over 15 games in 1974-75). There are two regular season games remaining.
- The Bucs have only reached 21 wins in a single season five times. The first was the historic 1994-95 season, followed by the 2007-08 season and the record-holding 2009-10 season that brought ETSU’s last NCAA tournament appearance. Outside of this season, the other was in 2014-15.
- Last time out, ETSU held off Furman for a 66-63 win inside Brooks Gym. There were 922 fans in attendance for the game, marking the largest crowd in Brooks since 2020 against Chattanooga. Saturday was Senior Day for Jiselle Thomas (Norwalk, Ohio) and Fan Appreciation Day.
- Thomas enters this week as the fifth-leading scorer in the SoCon at 15.3 points per game. She is also the third-leading scorer in conference games with 16.8 PPG vs. SoCon opponents.
- Last Thursday, ETSU nailed a school-record 16 made three-pointers in an 83-45 win over Wofford. The previous record of 15 was set back in ETSU’s last NCAA Tournament appearance in 2010 against Xavier. ETSU also netted 15 threes against North Florida in 2006. Entering Thursday night, ETSU was averaging six made threes per game.
- Paris McCarthy (Castleisland, Ireland) broke the record with a three-pointer at the 1:04 mark of the fourth quarter. Local product Sarah Thompson (Gate City, Va.) knocked down four triples of her own to finish with a career-high 17 points.
- For the first time since 2019, ETSU has had a SoCon Player of the Week. Sophomore Kendall Folley (Lebanon, Ohio) has won the award twice, most recently last week following two wins over Samford and Mercer on the road. In league games, she is averaging 14.3 PPG.
- On Tuesday, ETSU had two players earn College Sports Communicators (CSC) Academic All-District honors in sophomore guard Courtney Moore (Gainesville, Fla.) and graduate post Jayla Ruffus-Milner (North Hills, Calif.) earlier this week.
- ETSU has enjoyed nation’s current best turnaround this season under first year Buccaneer head coach Brenda Mock Brown. Coach Mock also had one of the most storied turnarounds of all-time at UNC Asheville in 2016, improving by 16 games to rank fifth all-time in NCAA D1 Women’s Basketball history. ETSU’s current turnaround is approaching the most in NCAA history since then with 15 games improved.
- ETSU’s 15-win improvement ranks atop the nation ahead of both Illinois and UIC at 13 games, followed by Virginia with a 10-win improvement. Last year’s most improved team was LSU with a 12-game improvement (17 more wins with 10 more opportunities).
- Since the start of the program in 1968, ETSU has never had a season that brought five separate four-game win streaks (or longer). ETSU enjoyed two four-game win streaks to start 8-2 overall, then had a five-game win streak to improve to 13-3. After a rocky start to SoCon play, ETSU won four in a row to improve to 17-6. The most recent win streak is in progress with wins in the last four contests. The last time ETSU had three win streaks of four or more games was the 2014-15 season that produced a 21-12 overall record.
- For the last 10 weeks, ETSU has either received votes or been ranked in the College Insider Women’s Mid-Major Top 25 Poll. This week, the Bucs were just four spots outside the Top 25 with 27 votes.
- The Bucs finished non-conference play with a 13-3 record — the best non-conference finish in modern era program history. That era began when the SoCon began sponsoring a women’s basketball championship in 1983-84 — the same season ETSU finished with 11 non-conference wins.
- The Bucs are averaging 63.6 points per game, while ranking 14th in the nation with just 54.6 points allowed per game.
- This season, ETSU in on track for its first winning campaign since 2018, where the team finished 20-13 overall, 11-3 in the SoCon and made 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, 2015, 2018).
ABOUT THE SPARTANS
- UNCG enters with an even record of 13-13 overall and 6-6 in the SoCon. The Spartans are currently in sixth place, but only two games back in the league standings.
- The Spartans have won three straight games with road wins at Furman and Wofford, as well as a home win over Western Carolina in their last outing — 72-59.
- UNCG is averaging 66.3 PPG while allowing 65.0 PPG for a +1.3 scoring margin.
- The Spartans only lead in one statistical category — turnovers forced per game — with an average of 16.42 takeaways. The Spartans are also second in the league with a 2.46 turnover margin and a 0.88 assist-to-turnover ratio.
- UNCG is the only SoCon team without an individual among the Top 10 scoring leaders, as Akira Wiggins leads the way with 11.4 PPG to rank 12th in the league. Wiggins makes up the difference with assists as she leads the SoCon with 4.5 assists per game.
- The Spartans also have the league’s top rebounder in Khalis Cain with 9.1 per game. Cain is also fifth in the nation in offensive rebounding with 4.7 per game, while ranking atop the league in blocked shots.
- Faith Price is a threat from outside, leading the league and ranking among the Top 20 players in three-point attempts with exactly 200 this season. She has made 67 of those to rank atop the league and 39th in the nation. Her 33.5 percentage from downtown is fourth in the SoCon.
- The Spartans are 7-5 at home compared to 6-8 on the road.
- UNCG is led by Coach Trina Patterson, who has 246 wins over 22 seasons as a head coach. Seven of those have been at UNCG as she owns 97 career wins with the Spartans.
- Thursday’s game will mark the 43rd meeting.
- ETSU has a slim 22-20 advantage in the all-time series, including a win this season.
- UNCG has won six of the last eight matchups.
- In the five meetings prior to this season, neither team has scored over 60 points. ETSU snapped that trend this season with 74 points against UNCG in Freedom Hall.
- The Bucs are 8-8 all-time in road games at UNCG.
For more information on Buccaneer women’s hoops, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the women’s basketball tab.