Joplin, Mo. - Fresh off a four-point win over Nebraska-Kearney on Thursday, the Missouri Southern women's basketball team looks to extend their six-game winning streak on Saturday when they host the No. 20 Washburn Ichabods at 1 p.m. at the Leggett & Platt Athletic Center.
Date: Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013
Tip-Off: 1:00 p.m., CT
Location: Joplin, Mo.
Site: Leggett & Platt Athletic Center (3,240)
Series Record: Washburn leads 45-25 (Home: 16-18, Away: 9-27)
Coaches: Ronda Hubbard (6-1 at MSSU, overall). Ron McHenry (347-73 at Washburn, overall).
MSSU Radio: KZYM-AM 1230 The Talker, Mike McClure, Play-by-Play
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Last time out for the Lions (6-1, 1-0 MIAA): With reigning MIAA Athlete of the Week Dominique Mosley leading the Lions with 22 points, the Missouri Southern women's basketball team opened MIAA play with a back-and-forth 76-72 win at home over Nebraska-Kearney Thursday (Dec. 5) at the Leggett & Platt Athletic Center.
The Lions (6-1, 1-0 MIAA ) were led offensively by Mosley, who finished 10-of-18 from the field on the evening, while Sharese Jones added 16 points and nine rebounds. Alexis Fitzpatrick chipped in a career-high 13 points, including a crucial one in the final minute to preserve the win. Samantha Soyez and Shonte Clay added nine points each for the Lions.
With the Lions trailing by a pair going into halftime, a quick layup from Mosley to start the second half tied the game at 34, as both sides were very even for much of the second half. They traded the lead or tied the game 16 times in the first 14 minutes of the second half. With the scored tied at 58 with 6:08 to play, Soyez hit a jumper from the right corner and Fitzpatrick nailed a jumper to give the Lions a four-point lead.
With UNK cutting the lead to one (68-67) on a layup and free throw with 1:44 to go, Fitzpatrick hit a crucial jumper in the lane with 53 seconds remaining that all but sealed the win for Southern. After Jones hit a layup, UNK responded with a layup and free throw of their own to cut Southern's lead to 72-70, but Fitzpatrick calmly nailed a pair from the charity stripe with 25 seconds to go that pushed the lead to four as they won by that margin 76-72.
Last time out for the Ichabods (5-2, 1-0): Brittney Lynch set career highs with 20 points and 17 rebounds Thursday (Dec. 5) as the 20th-ranked Ichabods won their MIAA opener 78-71 at Southwest Baptist. Casyn Buchman led Washburn with a career high 27 points as she was perfect from the free throw line at 8 of 8 for a fourth straight time. She has made 27 straight free throws dating back to November 16.
The Ichabods led by a game-high nine points with 3:15 remaining but the Bearcats scored six straight to pull within three points at the one-minute mark. The two teams traded baskets after that then Washburn made six of six free throw attempts in the last 24 seconds to hold off SBU. Buchman made four of them and Dana Channel made two.
The Coaches: Ronda Hubbard (6-1) is in her 13th year on the staff at Missouri Southern and was promoted to the position of Interim Head Coach on July 2, 2013 after the retirement of Maryann Mitts. During her 12 years with the Lions, she has helped the team to a 189-145 record, including winning marks and a trip to the MIAA post season tournament in all by one of those 12 seasons. In 2000-01, Hubbard helped the University of Texas-Pan American post its most wins in a season since becoming an NCAA Division I institution in 1985, and the second most victories in school history. Prior to her stint at Texas-Pan American, she served on current Lions head coach Maryann Mitts' staff as an assistant at Rockhurst University from 1996-2000. There, she helped the Lady Hawks post a 68-45 record and advance to the 1997-98 Sweet 16.
Ron McHenry is in his 14th year at Washburn and enters today's game with a 347-73 (.826) overall record in Topeka. He has the highest winning percentage among active NCAA Division II coaches with at least 10 years of experience. Among coaches to coach at least 10 years at any NCAA level, he's ninth in career winning percentage. He's a four-time MIAA coach of the year and a two-time regional coach of the year.
The series between the two schools: The Ichabods lead the overall series with Southern 45-25. Southern trails 18-16 at home, but is only 9-27 on the road in Topeka, Kan. The Lions fell 53-42 at Lee Arena last year as Mosley scored 10 points and grabbed five boards. Southern's last win at home over Washburn came on January 10, 2009 when they snuck out a 59-58 victory.
Scouting Washburn: Washburn comes into Saturday's game with a 5-2 mark coming off a win on Thursday at Southwest Baptist. The Ichabods are led in scoring by junior guard Casyn Buchman who averages 21.4 points per game, ranking second in the MIAA, while she also averages six rebounds and nearly five assists per game. In the frontcourt, Washburn is led by junior forward Brittney Lynch, who averages a double-double at 12.4 ppg and 10.0 rpg. Washburn's two losses this year came to two top 10 ranked teams in No. 4 Nova Southeastern on Nov. 9 and No. 9 Drury (Mo. ) on Nov. 21. The 'Bods rank second in the MIAA in scoring offense averaging 86.4 ppg and three-point percentage connecting on 36.4% from downtown this season. They rank third in both rebounding offense averaging 46.3 rpg and rebounding margin outrebounding their opponents by 13.2 per game.
Mosley named MIAA Athlete of the Week: For her outstanding performance at Rockhurst and a great outing earlier in the at Northwestern Oklahoma, senior forward Dominique Mosley earned MIAA Athlete of the Week honors this week. The Chicago native scored a career-high 30 points and grabbed a career-best 14 rebounds in Southern's 82-56 win at Rockhurst Saturday. She went 10-13 from the field while going a perfect 10-10 from the free throw line and grabbed seven of the Lions nine offensive rebounds. She also scored 24 points while snagging seven rebounds and swiping a career-high five steals earlier in the week in an 84-54 win at Northwestern Oklahoma State.