MAC UNBEATENS CLASH WEDNESDAY:
Two of the Eastern Division's hottest teams will meet on Wednesday as Buffalo hosts Kent State. Buffalo which began the season with eight consecutive wins, is 2-0 in league play and sports the best overall record in the MAC at 11-2. The Golden Flashes, meanwhile, have won four straight contests and are coming off an impressive 79-73 win over Eastern Michigan. After starting the season 3-5, Kent State is 7-5 overall and also 2-0 in the league.
In addition to the matchup in Buffalo, Ball State will take its five-game winning streak and 10-3 record into Kalamazoo to face Western Michigan in the Broncos' league opener on Wednesday.
HOME STREAK STILL THE SECOND LONGEST:
Kent State extended its school- and MAC-record for consecutive home wins with a 79-73 victory over Eastern Michigan on Saturday. The Golden Flashes 36-game home winning streak is still the nations second-longest current streak despite Grambling having its 68-game winning streak, which was the tied for the second- longest in the history of Division I, end on Saturday against Southern University. Texas Tech at 37 games has the nations longest home winning streak.
Along with the current 36-game home winning streak, the Golden Flashes have also won 45 consecutive home contests versus MAC schools. Kent State has also won nine straight regular season games against league members and 12 overall, which includes last seasons MAC Tournament.
GOFF SCORES A CAREER-HIGH 34 IN WIN:
Ball State's Johna Goff tallied 34 points in a win against Marshall Thursday, which tied for the fourth-highest point production by a BSU player in a game in the 26-year history of BSU women's basketball and the
highest ever by a BSU freshman. Amy Kieckbusch also poured in 34 points vs. Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1998. Char Thomsen, who was in attendance at Thursdays game with Marshall, owns the BSU record for points in a game with 39 against Marshall in 1998.
FALCONS DEADLY AT THE LINE:
Bowling Green, which last year led the nation in free throw shooting, is regaining its form thanks to a big week from the line. The Falcons entered last weeks games shooting .718 from the line but converted 32-of-37 (.865) from the charity stripe in a pair of MAC wins to increase its percentage to .740, which is second in the league to Buffalo's .756. Falcon senior Angie Farmer was a perfect 16-for-16 from the free throw line last week and is 27-for-28 on the season (.964).
CHARLES GRANTED ANOTHER SEASON:
Eastern Michigan forward/center Shani Charles was granted an additional year of eligibility by the NCAA on Jan. 2. Charles, who suffered season-ending knee injuries in 1996-97 and 1999-2000, was given a sixth-year in which to complete her eligibility.
Charles is second on the team in scoring at 11.9 ppg and is tied for the team lead in rebounding at 6.5 rpg. She had a season-high 13 rebounds versus Kent State and also added 10 points for her first double-double of the year.
MAKING THE MOST OF HER STARTS:
Akron sophomore Sandy Martin narrowly missed her fourth double-double of the season with a career-high 18 points and nine rebounds versus Buffalo on Saturday. She tallied 14 of her points in the second half. Martin leads the team in rebounding (6.4) and is third in scoring (6.7). The sophomore has made nine starts this year after making just one as a freshman.
READY TO SURPASS LAST YEAR:
With 35 points in Buffalo's two games last week, Mari McClure surpassed the 900-career point plateau. She now has 909 career points in 96 career games for a 9.5 per game average. McClure is averaging 15.8 points in 13 games this year after entering the season with an 8.5 career scoring average in her first three years. She already has 205 points this year after scoring 265 points in 29 games last season.
3-POINT STREAKS AROUND THE MAC:
Toledo has currently made at least one three-point field goal in each of its last 151 contests, dating back to Jan. 24, 1996. While the Rockets' current streak trails Western Michigans 163 consecutive games, Toledo has hit a three-pointer in 354 of its last 355 games. Below is a look at each of the teams present streak of consecutive games with a made three-point field goal.
Consecutive Games With A 3-Point Field Goal Made (Start of streak):
Western Michigan -- 163 (1/18/95)
Toledo -- 151 (1/24/96)
Eastern Michigan -- 115 (12/22/96)
Central Michigan -- 92 (11/29/97)
Bowling Green -- 69 (3/13/98)
Miami -- 66 (11/14/98)
Marshall -- 30 (12/29/99)
Kent State -- 29 (1/15/00)
Northern Illinois -- 27 (1/13/00)
Ball State -- 22 (2/25/00)
Buffalo -- 16 (2/25/00)
Akron -- 6 (12/8/00)
Ohio -- 2 (1/3/01)
SZALL HITTING THE MARK FOR OHIO:
Ohio's Cathy Szall tied a school record with six three-pointers in the Bobcats' loss to Kent State last Wednesday en route to a team-high 20 points. Szall hit all of her field goals from beyond the arc against the Golden Flashes, going 6-for-11. The junior then equaled her career high with 25 points versus Bowling Green on Saturday and connected on 10-of-11 from the free throw line. That same day also saw her become the schools all-time leader in three-point field goals made with 122, breaking Marlene Stollings mark of 118.
STRONG MAC OPENER MARK FOR UT:
Toledo improved it MAC season-opening record to an impressive 15-5 with a 70-64 win on the road at Miami on Saturday. Senior Kahli Carter paced the Rockets with 23 points, a career-high 15 rebounds and six steals, while Courtney Risinger added 12 points in the win. The Rockets are also 10-4 on the road in league openers and are 5-1 under head coach Mark Ehlen.
A CAREER NIGHT FOR ARNOLD:
Marshall's Melissa Arnold just missed a triple-double, last Thursday at Ball State. The senior point guard poured in 19 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and distributed eight assists in the contest. All three numbers are career highs for Arnold.
ROOKIE LEADING THE WAY FOR MIAMI:
Kim Lancaster was Miami's leading scorer in both games this past week, averaging 15.0 per contest and connecting on 50 percent of her shots. She also averaged 4.5 rebounds for the week, which was third on the team. Lancaster has led or tied for the team lead in scoring in eight of Miamis 12 games this year. The freshman is leading the team in scoring (15.8) and rebounding (6.6), with her scoring average being tops among all MAC freshmen.
YOUNGBLOOD PLAYING LIKE A VETERAN:
Northern Illinois freshman forward Jennifer Youngblood narrowly missed her fourth double-double with 11 points and nine rebounds versus Marshall. Youngblood currently leads the Huskies at 7.0 rebounds per game to augment an 8.4 ppg. scoring pace. More impressively, 44 of the freshmans 98 caroms have come off the offensive glass --- a 3.14 per-game rate that leads the MAC.
CMU'S ROZAK ON A SCORING TEAR:
Central Michigan's Alicia Rozak has posted five consecutive double-digit scoring outings, including a team-high 17 points in a loss to Ball State. The junior guard, who has paced the Chippewas in scoring in four of their last seven games, also pulled down a career-best 15 rebounds -- 11 on the defensive end -- and also passed out four assists and added two steals versus the Cardinals. Earlier in the week, Rozak had 13 points, six rebounds and five assists versus Eastern Michigan.
A LOOK AT THE RPI:
In this latest installment of the College Basketball News Women's RPI Report and the WBCA Summerville RPI rankings (through games of Jan. 7), the Mid-American Conference was ranked No. 16 and No. 15, respectively among 31 conferences in both listings. The MAC had one school in the top-100, five in the top-150 and eight in the top-200 -- seven in the WBCA.
School -- CBN -- WBCA
Toledo -- 89 -- 91
Buffalo -- 108 -- 114
Eastern Michigan -- 111 -- 111
Kent State -- 126 -- 123
Ball State -- 131 -- 134
Western Michigan -- 152 -- 144
Miami -- 155 -- 152
Bowling Green -- 199 -- 201
THE NON-CONFERENCE LOOK:
The Mid-American Conference has a 66-76 record in non-conference action (.465) and is 2-9 versus nationally-ranked opponents. The MAC completed the 1999-00 season with a 62-77 non-conference record, which translated into a .446 winning percentage. That mark also included a 1-9 record against nationally-ranked opponents. In 1998-99, the MACs record in non-conference play was 59-66 (.472).
BENCH PRODUCTION KEY FOR KSU:
The Kent State Golden Flashes received their best outing of the season from their bench in the 98-77 win over Ohio last Wednesday. The four non-starters contributed 49 points, 12 rebounds, six steals and four assists. The quartet was led by senior Lisa Wube and freshman Andrea Csaszar who both had career-best games. Wube started 8-for-8 from the field and scored 16 first half points en route to a career-high 20 points on 10-of-13 field goals. Csaszar was 9-for-13 from the field and 5-for-6 from the free throw stripe and scored a career-high 23 points.
END OF A STREAK FOR UB'S ORTEGA:
Buffalo senior Sonia Ortega's four steals against Miami moved her into seventh place all-time in career steals at UB with 208. She did not have any steals against Akron, marking the first time in 47 games that she did not have a steal. Ortega had at least one steal in the last five games of the 1998-99 season, in all 29 games last season and in the first 12 games this season, a streak of 46 games. The last time before Saturday's game against Akron that she didnt have at least one steal was on February 6, 1999, a 73-71 Buffalo win at
A POSSIBLE FIRST FOR MARSHALL?:
Marshall will take a short break from MAC play when it travels to the Charleston Civic Center to take on in-state rival West Virginia on Tuesday, which is also the league's final non-conference tilt of the season. A Thundering Herd victory over the Mountaineers would mark the first-time in the series history that MU has won back-to-back games. WVU leads the all-time series 22-9, however Marshall has won two of the last three meetings.
HURRLE REACHES CENTURY MARK:
Western Michigan's Sarah Hurrle reached the 1,000 point mark last Tuesday against Butler, and it couldnt have come at a better time or place. Hurrle is a native of Indianapolis and played three years at Butler before transferring to WMU last year. Hurrle had 22 points and seven rebounds versus her old team, helping the Broncos to a 68-64 win.
DOUBLE-DOUBLES ARE COMMON:
With Tamara Bowie and Shala Crook each recording a double-double at Central Michigan, it marked the 10th and 11th time this season that a Ball State player has accomplished the feat. Bowie has five double-doubles this season, which is second in the league, while Crook has three double-doubles (points/assists). Jessica Reiter has two double-doubles, while Amy Zercher has one double-double effort.
SECREST SETS NIU TREY MARK:
Northern Illinois freshman Lindsay Secrest matched her career-high with 26 points and grabbed a career-best nine rebounds to pace NIU to a 66-56 victory over Marshall in the Huskies' MAC opener last Saturday. Secrest hit nine of 12 shots from the field, including five-of-six from three-point land.
Secrest tallied 18 of her points in the first half and added six steals, which were also the most by the first-year player. In her last four games, Secrest is averaging 19.5 points and 6.5 rebounds per outing. Secrest's five three-pointers give her 27 for the season, the most ever by a Huskie freshman. She erases the mark established by Kristan Knake (25) last year. Secrest is now a 44 percent (27-of-61) shooter behind the arc for the year.
FARMER, GRIECH HEAT UP FOR BGSU:
Bowling Green senior Angie Farmer and sophomore Kim Griech scored a lot of points in very little time in the Akron game. The two combined for 34 points in 34 minutes. Griech came off the bench for a career-high 18 points in 20 minutes and also had six assists and three steals. Farmer, meanwhile had 16 points in 14 minutes. Griech did most of her damage from three-point land, going 4-for-8. Farmer also hit some treys (2-of-3), but showed a knack for getting to the free-throw line, where she was 10-of-10 from the stripe.
MASKA NEARING ELITE CLUB:
Senior Kristy Maska is already a member of one elite MAC group, being one of only 97 members of the leagues 1,000-point club. Maska earned that honor at Detroit two weekends ago, and is also one of only nine EMU players to reach that level. She is also closing in on becoming only the sixth player in league annals to register 200 made three-pointers. Maska has already canned a school-record 179 treys this year to date, which is eighth in MAC history.
LINDSAY MOVES UP COACHING RANKS:
Kent State head coach Bob Lindsay already has the most wins of any MAC womens coach in history, and last year became the first womens coach to reach the 200-win plateau. Lindsay is 218-115 (.655) overall in his 12th season with Kent State. At Ohio last Wednesday, Lindsay passed Darrell Hedric (Miami) for the third most wins of any hardwood coach in MAC history.
MAC TOURNEY MOVES TO GUND:
The 2001 Mid-American Conference Women's Basketball Tournament returns to Cleveland for a second consecutive year but will have a new location and a title sponsor. The MAC Womens Basketball Tournament will be held at Gund Arena, Tuesday, March 6 and Friday-Saturday, March 9-10. The league office announced in October at its media day that Kraft has signed a two-year agreement and will serve as the title sponsor of the tournament.
Five first-round games are slated for Saturday, March 3, with the two division winners and the team with the next best overall MAC record and winning percentage receiving a bye to the quarterfinals. Eight teams will convene in the Rock N Roll city for quarterfinal action on Tuesday, March 6. Two semifinal contests are set for Friday, March 9, while the championship game is slated for Saturday, March 10.
Individual game tickets for action at Gund Arena will go on sale Monday, Jan. 29. General admission tickets for adults will be $10, while student general admission seating is $5.
HAWKS CANT SNAP STREAK:
Miami began the year with three straight wins at home but have dropped its last two contests, its longest losing streak of the season. The RedHawks' loss to Toledo on Saturday was their 12 straight against the Rockets. Miamis last win came in the 1994-95 season.