Women's Basketball: Game Day vs. Stetson
DeLAND, Fla. – The Lady Wildcats are off to a 2-1 start for the third time under Head Coach Vanessa Blair, looking to make it 3-1 for the first time in the Blair era and fifth time since 1992-92, on the road at cross-county foe Stetson. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. at the Edmunds Center.
The Lady Wildcats face a Hatters (1-3) team that has taken on a tough early slate, with South Florida and Florida State earning wins in the early going. Stetson is in the midst of a four game turnaround in eleven days, with three at the Edmunds Center. The Lady Wildcats have earned four wins of the last ten in the series with this Atlantic Sun Conference opponent. Though SU has had success in the Volusia County matchup lately, including last year's 82-64 victory at Moore Gym, B-CU still controls the lead, 16-14, in the 31-year series.
About the Lady Wildcats
Bethune-Cookman is fresh off a week of highs and lows, most recently earning an emotional and eye-opening win over Florida Atlantic, 71-61, last week at Richard V. Moore Gymnasium. Before that, the Lady Wildcats let a road game at Jacksonville get away, causing the team to take the loss to heart. This will be the first road game since facing the Dolphins.
Now showing to be fully recovered from an ACL injury at the end of the 2010-11 season, junior center Amanda Hairston has taken charge of the team as a leader in the early games. She tops the team with 73 percent shooting from the floor, with 30 points on the board over the past week, earning career highs (5) and steals (3) against Florida Atlantic, earning her Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Defensive Player of the Week honors. She averages 17 points and 8.3 rebounds per game on the season, both team highs.
Also averaging in double figures in the early games, Chastity René Taylor has proven herself to be a truly consistent long range threat, an element that created challenges for B-CU the past two seasons when absent. Taylor averages 13.7 points per game, with eight three-pointers on the board (.348) already. Taylor also has collected five assists and seven steals so far.
Another pair of newcomers that have shown well early on are Jasmine Evans and Terrenisha Hollis. Evans averages just under double figures in scoring, at 9.3 PPG, grabs 6.0 RPG and is near the top of the team in free throw shooting at 72.7 percent. Hollis is one of the fastest players on the court, at small forward, and has used that ability to top the team in steals with nine, in addition to averages of 7.7 PPG and 5.3 RPG, with just 1.6 average turnovers.
About the Hatters
To use an opponent comparison, the Hatters recently defeated fellow MEAC team Florida A&M, 88 - 67, who topped Jacksonville 72-69. JU defeated B-CU 68-54 last week. What does that mean for the Lady Wildcats? Not a whole lot, given that JU also lost to FAU, which B-CU defeated last week. The key is to look at the matchups. While the Hatters have some size in their post players, and good depth, Stetson has been playing with a format the Lady Wildcats have become familiar with over the past week.
The four-guard rotation is what the Hatters put up against Florida A&M, and is also what B-CU has faced against both Jacksonville and Florida Atlantic. Using the second half struggles against JU as an example, B-CU exploited matchups over Hollis against FAU for the win.
Three Hatters average in double figures, led by senior guard Shanasa Sanders, who puts up 14.5 PPG. Sanders only hits 38 percent from the field, but also leads the team in attempts, and shoots 90.9 percent from the free throw line. Fellow senior guard Victoria McGowan scores 14 PPG and leads the team with 7.3 RPG while sophomore guard Jama Sharp puts up 11.7 points per game and leads the team with six steals.
The Hatters have shown the ability to score, but do not have a high aptitude for takeaways, with just 26 steals total across four games. Avoiding unforced errors, controlling the tempo and shot selection and keeping Stetson off the free throw line will be key factors in the outcome of the game.
Follow the Action during the Game
The game live stream will be available for free on Hattervision, with the link here
Stetson will broadcast live stats from the Edmunds Center click here.
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