February 11, 2003
Eagles facing tough task
The University of Southern Indiana women's basketball team will face a tough task this weekend as it travels to Highland Heights, Kentucky, and Indianapolis, Indiana, this Thursday, February 13, and Saturday, February 15, to take on 18th-ranked Northern Kentucky University and the 15th-ranked University of Indianapolis. The Screaming Eagles lost to both teams at home earlier in the season.
Coming off a thrilling 70-68 victory over Kentucky Wesleyan College, the Eagles are hoping that their last second shot sparks them in their fight for a conference tournament bid. The Eagles enter the week with a 7-14 overall record and a 5-9 mark in the Great Lakes Valley Conference.
USI leads Lewis University and the University of Missouri-St. Louis by a game-and-a-half for the eighth spot in the GLVC. The Eagles trail the University of Wisconsin-Parkside by a game for the seventh spot in the conference.
One thing helping the Eagles as of late has been some hot shooting out of senior guard/forward Sarah McIntosh (Cabery, Illinois). McIntosh has connected on five three-pointers in each of USI's last two contests and has been USI's scoring leader in the last three, pouring in 15.7 points per game.
If the Eagles can get that type of production out of McIntosh and get senior forward/center Africa Sherrod (Ft. Lauderdale, Florida) back on track, they will have a good shot in both games this weekend.
Sherrod, who recorded 34 points and 13 rebounds in USI's first meeting with Northern Kentucky, has been held in check in the last few games. Despite averaging 11.5 points and 8.5 rebounds per game in USI's last five contests, Sherrod is well under her season averages of 16.5 points and 10.8 rebounds per game.
Working the inside-outside game could be a key for USI in both games. The Eagles dominated the rebounding battle in their first meetings against Northern Kentucky and Indianapolis, but were outscored by a combined 70-58 in the paint.
Another area USI would like to see improve is scoring off the bench. USI was outscored by a combined 45-26 in its first meetings with Indianapolis and NKU.
Look for freshman Ashley Green (Otterbein, Indiana) to provide leadership off the bench. Green scored nine points coming off the bench against Kentucky Wesleyan.
USI changed up its starting point guard responsibilities in its last game, giving sophomore guard Amber Calhoun (Evansville, Indiana) the starting nod for the first time in her collegiate career. Calhoun rewarded head coach Rick Stein's decision by hitting the last second shot that gave the Eagles their victory over KWC.
Senior guard Bethany Miller (Princeton, Indiana) is still expected to contribute, as she enters the weekend as USI's leader in assists. Miller is dishing out 4.2 assists per game and averaging 5.3 points per outing.
NKU enters Thursday's date with the Eagles with a 16-4 overall mark and a 12-3 record in the GLVC, good enough for second in the league. The Norse bested the Eagles, 98-82, last month after getting a 31-point performance out of senior guard Bridget Flanagan and a 24-point performance out of senior forward Amy Mobley.
Flanagan leads the Norse with 14.6 points per game while Mobley is recording 14.2 points as well as a team-high 7.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists per contests.
Indianapolis enters this week's games as the GLVC's top team, posting a 19-2 overall record and a 12-2 record in the GLVC. The Greyhounds topped the Eagles, 73-56, in December.
Leading the Greyhounds this season is sophomore guard Erin Moran and senior forward Kristen Lowry. Moran is averaging a team-high 14.1 points while Lowry is adding 13.7 points and 8.1 rebounds per game.
Sophomore guard Amy Wisser, who dropped in a game-high 16 points against the Eagles in December, is third on the squad with 10.0 points per game.
Tip-off for Thursday's contes