BALL STATE, KENT STATE KEEP WINNING:
The list of unbeatens in Mid-American Conference play this season presently sits at three at the beginning of the week, with Ball State, Kent State and Bowling Green sporting 4-0 records. The Falcons, who are coming off wins over Central Michigan and Toledo, are idle until a meeting next Monday, Jan. 22 at Kent State.
The Cardinals, meanwhile, have won seven straight games and nine of their last 10 games. BSU, which hosts Ohio and travels to Marshall this week, is 12-3 and off to its best start in 26 seasons. For only the third time in school history, all under head coach Brenda Oldfield, the Cardinals received votes in the Associated Press poll. BSU grabbed nine votes in the Jan. 15 poll and are 39th this week.
The Golden Flashes, winners of six straight contests, will have three games over their next six days. KSU hosts Miami Wednesday, then travels to Toledo on Saturday before returning home to host Bowling Green on Jan. 22.
HOME STREAK KEEPS GOING FOR KSU:
Kent State extended its school- and MAC-record for consecutive home wins with a 69-37 victory over Akron on Saturday. The Golden Flashes' 37-game home winning streak is the nations second-longest current streak, trailing Texas Techs 38-game home winning streak.
Along with the current 37-game home winning streak, the Golden Flashes have also won 46 consecutive home contests versus MAC schools. Kent State has also won 10 straight regular season games against league members and 13 overall, which includes last seasons MAC Tournament.
KOETSIER'S SEASON ENDS FOR WMU:
Western Michigan's Kristin Koetsier, last year's MAC Freshman of the Year, will sit out the remainder of the season and apply for a medical redshirt, the school announced on Wednesday (Jan. 10). Koetsier, who averaged 18.6 points and 9.5 rebounds as a freshman, played in only four games this season and averaged 7.0 points, 5.2 rebounds and 21.0 minutes per game. The Grandville, Mich., native tore the ACL in her left knee this past July and had surgery in August.
BSU FEATURED IN DIARY ON ESPN.COM:
The Ball State women's basketball team, under the direction of second-year head coach Brenda Oldfield,
will receive national attention for the remainder of the
basketball season on ESPN.com. Sophomores Amy Zercher and Tamara Bowie will provide an inside look to BSU womens basketball every week by submitting a diary which will be posted on the front page of the womens college basketball site on ESPN.com. The first diary will appear on Jan. 15.
TOP FOUR NEARLY THE SAME:
When looking at the top of the leagues scoring and rebounding leaders, there is a striking similarity. The top four scorers and rebounders are nearly the same, though they are shuffled just a bit from one category to the other. BSU sophomore Tamara Bowie leads the league in scoring (19.7) and is second in rebounding (8.7), while Toledo senior Kahli Carter paces the MAC in rebounds (9.4) and is second in scoring (16.7). Kent State senior Julie Studer is third in rebounding (7.9) and fourth in scoring (16.4), while Buffalo senior Tiffany Bell is third in scoring (16.6) but fell to sixth in rebounding (7.3). KSUs Liz Beggs is fourth in rebounds (7.8).
SIMPSON ONE WIN SHY OF 300:
Marshall head coach Juliene Simpson is one win shy of 300 for her career, and will have a chance at the historical mark on Tuesday at home against Central Michigan. Simpson has the Herd off to a 7-7 start, their best start since joining the MAC. Simpson has a career record of 299-322 in 23 years of coaching, which includes stops at Amarillo Junior College, Cincinnati, Arizona State, Whitworth, Bucknell and Marshall.
KSUS NANCE ON FIRE OF LATE:
Kent State senior guard Carrie Nance has been the key to the teams recent winning streak. In the past six games, she is 29-for-55 (.527) from the field and 14-for-24 (.583) from three-point range. She currently has 989 points, just 11 shy of becoming the second Golden Flash this season and 16th in history to score 1,000 points. In addition, Nance will also become the 98th player in MAC history to reach the plateau.
FARMER DELIVERS FOR THE FALCONS:
Bowling Green senior Angie Farmer helped the Falcons to the teams first win over Toledo in nearly three years with 15 points off the bench on Saturday. Farmer was the only member of the team -- player or coach -- who was on the Falcons squad the last time BGSU defeated its arch rival on Jan. 31, 1998, a 67-63 Falcon victory. Since returning from injury, Farmer has recorded 61 points in only 76 minutes and has hit her last 21 free throw attempts.
OHIO'S HOT SHOOTING LEADS TO WIN:
In Ohio's 82-70 upset win over Buffalo on Saturday, the Bobcats connected on a season-best 58 percent of their shots from the floor and also nailed 90 percent from the free throw line (26-of-29). Junior Cathy Szall scored a career-high 28 points in the win, hitting seven of eight shots from the floor --three of three from beyond the arc -- and was 11-for-11 from the charity stripe.
3-POINT STREAKS AROUND THE MAC:
Toledo has currently made at least one three-point field goal in each of its last 153 contests, dating back to Jan. 24, 1996. While the Rockets current streak trails Western Michigans 165 consecutive games, Toledo has hit a three-pointer in 356 of its last 357 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 -- 165 (1/18/95)
Toledo -- 153 (1/24/96)
Eastern Michigan -- 116 (12/22/96)
Central Michigan -- 94 (11/29/97)
Bowling Green -- 71 (3/13/98)
Miami -- 68 (11/14/98)
Marshall -- 32 (12/29/99)
Kent State -- 31 (1/15/00)
Ball State -- 24 (2/25/00)
Buffalo -- 18 (2/25/00)
Akron -- 8 (12/8/00)
Ohio -- 4 (1/3/01)
Northern Illinois -- 1 (1/13/01)
LANCASTER MAINTANS CONSISTENCY:
Of Miami's 14 games this year, freshman Kim Lancaster has beens the teams leading scorer in nine of them. For the third time in four games, the rookie has either led or tied for the team lead in scoring. Lancaster had 10 of her 13 points in the second half to erase an Akron halftime lead, helping the RedHawks to the road win. She then tied for the team lead with 18 points against Central Michigan on 8-of-11 shooting from the field and snagged a team-high six rebounds.
UB ROOKIE MAKING THE ADJUSMENT:
Buffalo freshman forward Jessica Kochendorfer is stepping up her game now that the conference season has begun. Kochendorfer had a career night against Kent State last Wednesday, recording her first career double-double with career highs of 16 points and 10 rebounds. She followed that up with a team-high 15 points, five boards and two blocks against Ohio on Saturday. For the season, Kochendorfer is averaging 6.6 points and 4.0 boards with 17 blocks and seven steals in 15 games. In four MAC games, she is averaging 11.3 points and 5.5 rebounds with five blocks and two steals.
DEFENSE WINS OUT FOR HERD:
One of the reasons for Marshall's 7-7 start to the 2000-01 season has been its defense. The Herd is limiting opponents to a mere 37.4 shooting percentage, which leads the MAC. This past week, Marshall held West Virginia to only 33.8% shooting, while Western Michigan shot 34.9% from the floor. In addition, the Thundering Herds scoring is up as well. Last year, Marshall averaged 62.3 points per game, and this year average 73.9 points, which is third in the league.
A LOOK AT THE RPI:
In this latest installment of the College Basketball News Womens RPI Report and the WBCA Summerville RPI rankings (through games of Jan. 14), the Mid-American Conference was ranked No. 17 and No. 15, respectively among 31 conferences in both listings. The MAC has five schools in the top-150 and nine in the top-200.
School -- CBN/WBCA
Toledo -- 115/112
Kent State -- 120/122
Ball State -- 131/127
Buffalo -- 142/145
Eastern Michigan -- 149/146
Bowling Green -- 167/171
Western Michigan -- 169/165
Miami -- 171/174
Northern Illinois -- 178/179
THREE DOT NAMES IN RECORD BOOK:
Three Eastern Michigan players are moving up the career charts. Senior Kristy Maska just became the ninth
member of EMUs 1,000-point club at Detroit. She also is extending her three-pointers made (181) and attempted (473) school records. Junior Shani Charles currently ranks 33rd in career scoring (558 points) and tied for 19th in career rebounds (399). Junior Stephanie Smiley ranks on the charts in scoring (12th, 835), three-pointers made (5th, 93), three-pointers attempted (5th, 246), assists (4th, 354), steals (7th, 157), blocks (4th, 55), and rebounds (14th, 473).
PLAYING MORE, CONTRIBUTING MORE:
Akron's Jamie Scott has shown that the more time she plays, the more she is contributing for the team. Last Wednesday, the senior had season-high 18 points and five rebounds in 26 minutes of action versus Miami. In the eight games she has played 20-plus minutes, she is averaging 9.8 points and 6.9 rebounds per game. In the seven she has seen less than 20 minutes, her averages dip to 3.9 ppg and 3.0 rpg.
ANOTHER ROOKIE STEPS UP FOR TEAM:
Northern Illinois freshman Jennifer Youngblood has played in the shadows of her Huskie teammates for most of the season, but the forward stepped up to the pressure of last Saturday's MAC West showdown with Ball State. Youngblood delivered a career-high 23 points on 11-of-13 (85 percent) shooting at Ball State, adding seven rebounds in 31 minutes of play. Youngblood raised her season scoring pace to 9.1 points per contest while her 6.6 rebounds per game is 11th in the league.
NICE HOMECOMING FOR EIDSON:
It turned out to be a big homecoming for Central Michigan's Desiree Eidson, who returned home to Bowling Green last Tuesday. The sophomore exploded for her first-ever double-double with 18 points and 10 rebounds versus the Falcons. The 18 points were three short of her career high of 21, which she set against Lake Superior State on Dec. 29.
BOWIE LIKES THE 20-PLUS GAMES:
Ball State's Tamara Bowie has scored 20-or-more points 18 times in her Ball State career, including seven of BSUs last nine games this season. In addition, Bowie has scored in double figures in 38 of the 44 games in her BSU career. She has reached double figures in 14 of the 15 games this season.
THE NON-CONFERENCE LOOK:
The Mid-American Conference finished the regular season with a 67-76 record in non-conference action (.468), including a 2-9 slate 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).
HITTING DOUBLE DIGITS TWICE OVER:
Kent State freshman center Andrea Csaszar recorded the first double-double of her young career against Akron. Csaszar was one three Golden Flash players who scored 12 points in that game and added a game-high 13 rebounds. Csaszar pulled down eight boards in the second half and also had four offensive boards which turned into six of her points. A Kent State player has posted a double-double in six consecutive games.
BIG START FOR FALCONS:
The Falcons are 4-0 in MAC play for the first time in three years. The last team to win the first four conference games was the 1997-98 squad, and that team burst out to a 5-0 league start en route to a final MAC mark of 15-3. This years team is averaging 9.75 three-point field goals and shooting .450 (109-of-242) overall, .448 (39-of-87) from long range and .794 (54-of-68) from the free-throw line over the first four MAC contests.
DEURLOO SHINES ON FOR WMU:
Despite Western Michigan's 3-10 start to this season, junior forward Karen Deurloo has been a bright spot all season for the Broncos. After sitting out the 1998-99 season as a transfer Duerloo missed all but three games of the 1999-2000 season with a knee injury. This year, however, is a different story as she currently leads the team in scoring (15.5 ppg.), rebounding (6.3 rpg.) and field goal percentage (.547). Deurloos current success rate from the floor would rank fourth among single season marks in the Bronco record book. She has topped the team in scoring seven times, including a career-best 33-point effort against Kansas State.
CARTER DOUBLING CAREER NUMBERS:
Entering her senior season, Toledo's Kahli Carter averaged 7.9 points and 4.1 rebounds per contest and was coming off her most successful season on the court statistically, garnering 10.0 points and 5.2 boards per contest as a junior. This year, Carter has taken her game to the next level and ranks in the top-10 in the league in five statistical categories. Carter leads the league in rebounding (9.4), is second in scoring (16.7) and free throw percentage (.851), sixth in steals (2.29) and seventh in field goal percentage (.460). The forward has hit double figures in points in 11 of 14 games this season.
MAC TOURNEY MOVES TO GUND:
The 2001 Mid-American Conference Womens 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.