January 10, 2007
Eagles face tough challenge,
Look to continue great start
EVANSVILLE, Ind.—The University of Southern Indiana women's basketball team gets its toughest challenge to date when it travels to Edwardsville, Illinois, to take on Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Thursday at 5:30 p.m. and Quincy, Illinois, to take on Quincy University Saturday at 1 p.m.
USI (11-2, 5-0 GLVC) is off to one of its best starts in the program's 31-year history after defeating Rockhurst University, 90-61, and Drury University, 73-63, at the Physical Activities Center last week. The Screaming Eagles perfect start in their first five GLVC games is just the fifth time that they have started league play with five straight wins and the first time since they were 20-0 in the GLVC in 1996-97.
Senior guard Katie Thiesenhusen (Muskego, Wisconsin) was firing on all cylinders last weekend when she averaged 21.0 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 2.5 assists per game in USI's victories over Rockhurst and Drury. Thiesenhusen, who leads the GLVC in made three pointers per game (2.38), leads USI with 14.3 points and 2.9 assists per contest.
Another player that stepped up for the Eagles last week was junior guard Akiya Alexander (Evanston, Illinois). Alexander averaged 16.5 points, 3.5 assists, and 3.5 steals in USI's last two contests. For the season, Alexander is fourth on the team with 9.4 points per contest.
Junior forward Jasmine Baines (Jeffersonville, Indiana) and senior forward Sabrina Brandon (Danville, Illinois) round out USI's double-figure scorers with 12.4 and 10.9 points per game, respectively. Baines and Brandon also are second and third, respectively, in rebounding behind senior forward/center Sarah Buldtman's (Metropolis, Illinois) team-high 6.5 rebounds per outing.
SIU Edwardsville (11-2, 5-1 GLVC) has won four straight games after recording a 68-65 overtime win at the University of Missouri-Rolla last Thursday and a 66-48 victory at the University of Missouri-St. Louis last Saturday.
Junior guard/forward Amber Shelton leads the Cougars with 18.4 points per game, while junior guard Whitney Sykes is second on the squad with 14.8 points per contest. Senior forward Julianne McMillen leads SIUE with 5.8 rebounds per outing, while junior guard Elyse Morris leads the squad with 4.0 assists per game.
USI, which would open a two-game lead in the loss column over SIUE in the West Division with a win Thursday, leads the all-time series with the Cougars 24-20 after sweeping them a year ago. The Eagles, who hold an 8-5 advantage since 2000 over SIUE, won the first meeting last year, 70-69, at the PAC, before taking the second meeting, 76-68, in overtime at the Vadalabene Center.
Quincy (8-5, 2-4 GLVC), which hosts Kentucky Wesleyan College Thursday evening at the Pepsi Arena, is coming off a 74-69 victory at Missouri-Rolla last Saturday after suffering a 57-55 loss at Missouri-St. Louis last Thursday. Despite the setback, Quincy has won five of its last six games.
Sophomore guard Jessica Keller leads the Lady Hawks with 12.5 points and 6.5 rebounds per game, while freshman forward Janette Burgin is second on the squad with 11.5 points and 4.2 rebounds per outing. Senior guard Shaquita Crawford leads the team with 3.2 assists per contest.
The Eagles lead the all-time series with the Lady Hawks, 15-13, but are 5-10 against them since 2000 after losing twice to them last season. Quincy won the first game, 75-61, at the PAC before pinning an 85-69 setback on the Eagles at the Pepsi Arena later in the year.
Following the road trip, the Eagles return home to take on GLVC rivals Bellarmine University and Northern Kentucky University January 18 and 20, respectively.
USI Sports Information