Lady Bears look to extend road win streak Saturday at Wichita State
The Missouri State Lady Bears (6-13 overall, 4-4 MVC) kick off a three-game road swing Saturday (Feb. 2) afternoon against the Wichita State Shockers (7-13 overall, 1-7 MVC) in a 2:00 p.m. matchup at Charles Koch Arena. The Lady Bears, who will be shooting for their third road win in-a-row, also have road tilts against Southern Illinois and Evansville on tap before returning to Hammons Student Center on Feb. 14 to take on Bradley.
Wichita State picked up its first Missouri Valley Conference win of the year last Friday at home with a 74-66 decision over Indiana State. The Shockers fell to Illinois State by a 71-53 score on Sunday to drop to 1-7 in league play.
Saturday’s game will be broadcast locally in Springfield on KTXR 101.3 FM. The contest will also be televised live in Springfield on Mediacom (MCC-14).
Last Time Out: Indiana State shot just under 52 percent from the field to pull away with a 78-55 victory over the Lady Bears Sunday afternoon in Springfield. Senior guard Angela Phillips led the way for the Sycamores, handing out nine assists and going 6-of-11 from three-point range to tally a game-high 20 points.
The Sycamores hit on 15-of-29 field goal attempts, including 5-of-12 from beyond the arc, in the first half to seize control of the game. ISU shot its way to an early double-digit lead, as Phillips knocked down two of her four first-half three-pointers in the first four minutes of the ballgame to give the Sycamores a 14-3 advantage.
Missouri State briefly cut into the margin, drawing to within three points on a Jacque Griggs jumper at the 4:31 mark of the first half. But the Lady Bears struggled offensively throughout the afternoon, hitting just 8-of-33 (.242) field goal attempts and turning the ball over 12 times in the first 20 minutes of the game to give the visitors an opening to take control of the contest.
They did just that behind some solid long-range shooting and the inside duo of Laura Rudolphi and Maria Olsthoorn, who combined to score 18 points in the opening period. Phillips’s final trey of the first half with 2:21 left made it a 28-20 ISU lead, and Olsthoorn’s basket at the 0:50 mark started what would turn into an 11-0 run. A Leah Phillips triple with just seven seconds left sent Indiana State to the lockerroom with a 37-24 advantage, and ISU would score the first six points of the second period to build a 19-point lead.
Missouri State never seriously threatened the Sycamore lead, pulling no closer than 15 points the rest of the way. Indiana State led by no fewer than 21 points over the final 8:44 and extended its lead to as many as 27.
Rudolphi, who blocked four shots on the day, connected on 8-of-12 field goal attempts to finish with 19 points. Kelsey Luna chipped in 17 points and grabbed five rebounds for ISU.
As a team, the Sycamores converted 29-of-56 field goal attempts and totaled 21 assists. They also recorded eight blocks on the afternoon, a season-high for a Missouri State opponent.
The Coaches: Nyla Milleson (Kansas State, ’85) is 6-13 in her first season as the head coach at Missouri State and 191-49 overall. The Goodland, Kan., native led Drury University to a 185-36 mark in seven seasons, highlighted by a national runner-up finish in 2003-04. In all, the Lady Panthers made five NCAA Division II Tournament appearances and advanced to the Sweet 16 in four of those years. Milleson was honored as Heartland Conference Coach of the Year four times, as Drury won five conference titles in all.
Jane Albright (Appalachian State, ’77) is in her fifth year as coach of the Shockers and her 24th season as a collegiate head coach. A native of Graham, N.C., Albright has amassed an overall record of 395-303 (.566). including a 46-86 (.348) mark at Wichita State. Prior to taking the reins in Wichita, Albright completed successful coaching stops at Northern Illinois and Wisconsin, where she led the Badgers to ﬁve NCAA Tournament appearances and the 2000 WNIT championship. In nine games against Missouri State, Albright’s teams have gone 4-5, including a 2-2 mark in Wichita vs. MSU.
Series Record: The Lady Bears hold a 41-19 advantage in the series with the Shockers and a 16-11 edge in Wichita. The Shockers are currently riding a four-game win streak vs. Missouri State after claiming a 75-67 victory in Springﬁeld (Jan. 7) and outlasting the Lady Bears, 68-65, in Wichita (Feb. 3) a year ago.
Scouting Wichita State: The Shockers return nine letterwinners and three starters from last year’s 9-20 squad that finished ninth in the Valley. Senior forward Kiki Stephens is the most experienced Shocker, having started every game of her Wichita State career. The Tulsa native ranks ninth in the MVC in scoring, 10th in rebounding (6.1 rpg.) and is averaging team-highs of 12.9 points, 1.1 steals and 28.8 minutes per contest while shooting 40.6 percent from the floor. Senior guard Kyrie Kinder (7.9 ppg./4.9 rpg.) is WSU’s second-leading scorer and leads the team in three-point field goals despite shooting just .296 from beyond the arc. Junior center Marcy Sudbeck (6.5 ppg.) is the Shockers’ top rebounder, averaging 7.0 boards per contest, and sophomore guard Jacie Hoyt (5.7 ppg./2.3 apg.) leads the team in assists.
As a team, Wichita State ranks fourth in the Missouri Valley Conference in scoring defense, holding its opponents to 64.3 points per contest. WSU leads the conference in field goal percentage defense (.379) and blocked shots (3.65 bpg.). The Shockers’ offense (54.5 ppg.), however, ranks last in the league. Wichita State is the MVC’s worst shooting team, hitting just 35.9 percent of its field goal attempts, 66.6 percent of its foul shots and only 24.8 percent of its three-point attempts this season.
Red-Hot Redbirds: Illinois State’s decisive 95-59 win on Friday (Jan. 25) represented the largest home loss for MSU as a Division I program and their biggest margin of defeat since the 1979-80 season, when they fell by a 77-32 score to Iowa State (11/17/79). It was also the most points allowed by MSU at home since a 107-101 quadruple overtime loss to Indiana State on Jan. 28, 1989.
Battle on the Boards: Illinois State showed why it has been the Valley’s top rebounding team this season, dominating the glass Friday night to the tune of a 55-30 total rebound advantage. The 25 rebound deficit represents the widest margin a Lady Bear team has been outrebounded in a single game since Dec. 2, 1988, when Washington posted a 55-25 advantage on the boards in a 95-57 win over MSU.
On the Record: Illinois State’s Maggie Krick added another update to the Missouri State record book Friday night, tying the single-game record for three-point field goals made by a Lady Bear opponent with seven triples. She matched the mark shared by Texas’s Danielle Viglione (3/16/96) and Canisius’s Amanda Cavo, who equaled the mark just over one month ago in MSU’s 97-89 win over the Griffins in Springfield.
Streak’s Over: MSU’s 78-55 win over UNI on Jan. 17 put the brakes on a school-record 15-game road losing streak that included nine road losses in-a-row in regular season conference play, dating back to January of last season. The Lady Bears’ current four-game MVC win streak is their first during regular-season conference play since the 2004-05 season. Also, MSU’s two-game road win streak is its first in conference play since winning at Creighton and Drake in February 2005.
Getting Offensive: Missouri State scored 70 points or more in five straight contests, beginning with its overtime loss at Creighton (Jan. 6). The last time the Lady Bears accomplished that feat was during a seven-game win streak in January 2005. Over its four-game win streak (Jan. 8-19), the Lady Bears shot just under 47 percent from the field and 41 percent from three-point range and averaged 75.2 points per contest. MSU outscored its opponents from the foul line by a 57-25 margin, connecting on 79.2 percent of their attempts in the second half.
Course Correction: While the Lady Bears’ offensive turnaround has been nothing short of remarkable, MSU’s defensive numbers over its four-game win streak were impressive as well. Prior to their win over Evansville (Jan. 10) that started the streak, the Lady Bears were giving up 77.2 points per contest and allowing their opponents to shoot .438 from the field and .374 from three-point range. In the wins over Evansville, Southern Illinois, UNI and Bradley, the Lady Bears allowed and average of 60.5 points per outing and .364 shooting, including just a .248 mark from beyond the arc. More impressive was the fact that MSU outscored its opponents by an average of 15.3 points in the second half alone over the four-game stretch.
In the Crunch: The Lady Bears’ came away with victories over Evansville (1/10) and Southern Illinois (1/12) thanks in large part to big second-half efforts in each contest. As a team Missouri State shot just under 52 percent from the floor (27-of-52) in the combined second periods of the two games to outscore the Purple Aces and Salukis by a +12.5 margin. MSU also came through with solid defensive efforts in each game, holding its two opponents to identical 8-of-29 (.276) shooting performances from three-point range that included a combined second-half showing of 7-of-30 (.233) from beyond the arc.
Dwyer Honored Again: After leading the Missouri State Lady Bears to back-to-back road victories last week, junior forward Maggie Dwyer has earned her second consecutive Missouri Valley Conference Newcomer of the Week honor and her fourth overall in 2007-08, the league office announced Monday (Jan. 21).
A 6-1 forward from Grand Haven, Mich., Dwyer played a pivotal role in Missouri State wins over UNI and Bradley last week, converting 69 percent of her second-half field goal attempts and shooting .538 from the field in all, while averaging 16.5 points to help the Lady Bears pick up their first two road victories of the season. Against UNI on Thursday (Jan. 17), the Grand Haven, Mich., native went 4-of-4 from the floor in the second half and totaled 14 points, three rebounds and two assists in a 78-55 MSU win that snapped a 15-game road losing streak.
With the score knotted at 42-42 Saturday (Jan. 19) at Bradley, Dwyer scored eight of the next 10 MSU points to help spark a 28-10 scoring run that ultimately netted the Lady Bears’ fourth win in-a-row. She scored 12 of her game-high 19 points in the second half, grabbed two boards and handed out a pair of assists in the 70-55 victory.
Dwyer, who was also tabbed for the same honor on Dec. 10, Dec. 26 and Jan. 14, is averaging a team-high 14.3 points per game, good for seventh in the Valley. She becomes the first Lady Bear to earn four weekly awards in a single season since Jackie Stiles was named MVC Player of the Week a conference-record seven times in 2000-01.
Balerio Tops 1,000-Point Plateau: Senior guard Tahnee Balerio became the 19th player in school history to join the 1,000-point club with her 16-point performance Jan. 12 vs. Southern Illinois, knocking down a pair of free throws with 9:26 left in the game to reach the 1,000 career scoring mark. Sarah Klaassen was the last Lady Bear to accomplish the feat, surpassing the mark in MSU’s win over Drake in the quarterfinal round of the 2006 State Farm MVC Tournament.
Climbing the Charts: Balerio moved past Sarah Klaassen and Cindy Castillon into the No. 17 spot on MSU’s career scoring chart with her 17-point effort Jan. 25 against Illinois State. She currently needs 32 more points to catch Tina Robbins (1,098) for the No. 15 spot.
Senior forward Tiff Terwelp also broke into the top 30 when she scored her 731st career point vs. DePaul (Dec. 2) to move past Meg Tierney for the 30th spot. Terwelp surpassed the 800-point mark for her MSU career in the Lady Bears’ win over Southern Illinois (Jan. 12) and moved past Patty Porter and Tonya Baucom into the No. 27 position on the list with her 14-point game against Bradley (Jan. 19). She enters Saturday’s game 18 points shy of Cindy Hauter at No. 26 on the list.
More Charting: Terwelp broke into MSU’s career rebounding top 10 with her 14-board effort in MSU’s Jan. 4 loss at Drake. She passed LaTanya Davis (648) for the No. 10 spot on, then climbed all the way to No. 8 with her 17-rebound performance in a 79-73 overtime loss at Creighton (Jan. 6), passing both Sandy Meyer (661) and Karen Rapier (666). With her 14 rebounds at Bradley Saturday, Terwelp passed Kelly Mago (696) and Jenni Lingor (699) to become just the sixth Lady Bear to score 800 points and grab 700 rebounds. With her lone block of the game, she also moved into sole possession of eighth place on MSU’s career blocked shot list with her 46th and 47th career blocks Jan. 25 vs. Illinois State.
Windex Woman: Terwelp has been the Lady Bears top rebounder in each of the past two seasons, and currently leads the Valley in rebounding with an average of 8.7 boards per game.
Earlier this season, Terwelp cleaned the glass to the tune of 18 rebounds in the loss at ASU. That effort matched single-game performances by Lynn Strubberg (1/28/83 at Northwest Missouri St.) and Roshonda Reed (1/16/99 at Indiana St.) for the third-highest rebound total in MSU history. Terwelp’s previous career-high of 16 boards came in a 70-51 loss at Tulsa last December.
The Quincy, Ill., product nearly equaled that effort at Creighton (Jan. 6) when she pulled down 17 rebounds, her fifth double-digit rebounding game of the season.
On this Date in Lady Bears History: February 2, 1995 - Missouri State 72, Indiana State 68 - MSU rallied from a 10-point first-half deficit to earn their ninth consecutive win en route to a 21-12 campaign and their fifth straight NCAA Tournament appearance. Stephanie Thurman’s three-pointer with 13:43 to play gave the Lady Bears the lead for good, but ISU had a shot to tie the game in the closing seconds, but it was off the mark. MSU shot .552 (16-of-29) from the field in the second half as four Lady Bears finished in double figures.
Preseason Picks: Missouri State was picked to finish seventh in the Missouri Valley Conference preseason poll of coaches, media and sports information directors. The Lady Bears received 136 points, while preseason favorite Drake received 24 of 40 first-place votes and 348 total points.
Valley Openers: With their loss at Drake on Jan. 4, the Lady Bears are now 11-5 in Missouri Valley Conference openers and 18-7 overall in conference openers since formal competition began in the Gateway in 1983. The defeat was MSU’s largest loss in MVC regular-season play since an 84-47 setback at Creighton six years ago (1/6/02).With its Jan. 6 overtime loss at Creighton, MSU started conference play 0-2 for the third consecutive season.
MSU Peaks in The Valley: The Lady Bears are 199-75 all-time against Valley opponents with a 115-22 home record against league foes. Since joining the MVC in 1992, the Lady Bears have won at least a share of eight regular-season titles and seven conference tournaments. Missouri State has played in 10 of the 15 Valley tournament championship games.
Instant O: After averaging just 57.8 points per game in their first eight contests of the season, the Lady Bears scored 176 points combined against Oral Roberts (Dec. 15) and Canisius (Dec. 21). That figure represents the best two-game scoring total for MSU since December 2004, when the Lady Bears knocked off Saint Louis (86-56) and Eastern Kentucky (91-81) in succession. Additionally, MSU’s 97 points vs. Canisius represented the highest point total by a Lady Bear club since a 107-53 win over Evansville on March 8, 2003.
Holding Aces: Missouri State’s first Missouri Valley Conference win of the season, a 76-65 victory over Evansville on Jan. 10, snapped a streak of five straight losses in MVC regular-season play and six in a row against Valley opponents, including last season’s loss to Bradley in the State Farm MVC Tournament.
The victory over the Purple Aces gave head coach Nyla Milleson her first career MVC win and was the Lady Bears’ first victory in an MVC home opener since defeating Evansville (1/6/05) at the start of the 2004-05 conference season. It also prevented the third straight 0-3 start to an MVC season for Missouri State.
Century Mark for Terwelp, Balerio: Tiff Terwelp played in her 100th career contest for Missouri State in the loss at Oral Roberts (Dec. 15), becoming the 34th Lady Bear to top the century mark in games played. Fellow senior Tahnee Balerio also reached the 100-game plateau for her MSU career in the Lady Bears’ Jan. 6 loss at Creighton.
Balerio Back in Gear: Balerio was a driving force in the Lady Bears’ offensive in their last three non-conference games. After totaling just 14 assists in MSU’s first eight games, the Buhler, Kan., native registered a career-high 12 against Oral Roberts, then handed out 10 in both the win over Canisius and an 82-64 loss at Western Kentucky (Dec. 29). Balerio also tallied 17 points in the victory over Canisius, matching her best scoring effort since a 20-point performance in the Lady Bears’ season-opener at Texas (Nov. 11).
Busby Makes Her Mark: Sophomore guard Melissa Busby has made the most of her return to the Missouri State starting lineup, totaling 68 points in the Lady Bears’ last three non-conference contests.
In her first start of the season Busby connected on 6-of-11 three-point tries and led the Lady Bears with a career-high 24 points in a 96-79 loss at Oral Roberts (Dec. 15). She followed that up with another strong offensive showing in the Lady Bears’ win over Canisius (Dec. 21). Busby knocked down six three-pointers in the first half and finished with 23 points for the game on 7-of-12 shooting from beyond the arc. She matched that shooting performance with a 7-of-11 effort against Western Kentucky. The Edmond, Okla., native hit six treys in the second half versus the Lady Toppers to finish with 21 points, her third 20+ point performance in a row.
Mags to Riches: Junior forward Maggie Dwyer found her shooting stroke over the Lady Bears’ last six non-conference contests. While averaging a team-high 17.8 points per game over that stretch, Dwyer shot .430 from the field, including .429 from three-point range after connecting on just 28.6 percent of her field-goal attempts in Missouri State’s first five games of the season. She averaged team highs of 32.0 minutes and 6.8 boards per contest in the Lady Bears final six games leading up to the conference season.
No Cupcakes Here: Missouri State’s 11 non-conference opponents have combined to go 137-82 (.626) in 2007-08 (through games of Jan. 29). The Lady Bears’ schedule has produced two games against ranked opponents (#22 Texas and #17 DePaul), and all but Tulsa (8-11) and Saint Louis (8-12) are at the .500 mark or above.
For the History Books: The Lady Bears’ 96-79 loss at Oral Roberts (Dec. 15) will be remembered for several significant individual performances that left their mark on the Missouri State record book. Busby’s six treys matched seven other performances by a Lady Bear for the 10th-most three-point field goals made in a single game. Melody Howard (twice), Tina Robbins (12/5/93 at Iowa), Jackie Stiles (twice) and Kari Koch (twice) also buried six triples in a game for MSU.
Balerio’s seven steals marked a new career high for the senior point guard and equaled the single-game efforts of 13 other Lady Bears for the seventh-best all-time performance in school history. Additionally, Balerio’s 12 assists matched her career best in that category (2/23/06 vs. Creighton) and ranks as the No. 10 single-game total, along with 11 other such performances by MSU players.
Double Trouble: A Lady Bear has finished in double figures in rebounding in 13 of MSU’s last 17 contests. Four different players have posted double-digit rebound games in that span, and three of those have registered point-rebound double-doubles, including Tiff Terwelp (vs. Arkansas State, Creighton, Southern Illinois, Bradley and Indiana State), Jacque Griggs (vs. UALR) and Maggie Dwyer (vs. Tulsa and Western Kentucky). In all, nine Lady Bears have established new single-game rebounding highs so far in 2007-08.
Adams Arrives: The Lady Bears received a boost with the addition of Jamie Adams, a two-year MSU volleyball starter who began practicing with the Lady Bears the week of Dec. 10. Adams scored four points, grabbed a team-high seven rebounds and recorded two blocks in her Lady Bear debut vs. Oral Roberts (Dec. 15).
Adams, who will have two years of basketball eligibility, earned second-team All-MVC honors in 2006 and 2007 and helped the volleyball Bears to three-straight NCAA Tournament appearances.
Balerio on Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award Watch List: In recognition of her accomplishments both on and off the court, senior guard Tahnee Balerio has been selected as one of 30 initial candidates for the 2007-08 Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award for women’s basketball.
Lowe’s Senior CLASS (an acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School) Award recognizes college senior athletes who remain committed to their university and pursue the many rewards that a senior season can bring.
Balerio is one of 30 candidates in the running for the 2008 women’s basketball award, for which 10 finalists will be selected in early February. The winner will be announced at the Women’s Final Four in Tampa, Fla., during the weekend of April 5-6.
One Down: MSU’s 72-61 victory over Tulsa on Dec. 4 allowed the Lady Bears to cross a number of items off their to do list, including:
►posting their first win of the 2007-08 season after six straight losses to begin the campaign;
►giving new head coach Nyla Milleson her first win at MSU and as a Division I head coach;
►halting a school record-tying 10-game losing streak dating back to February of 2007;
►ending a four-game home losing streak, their longest since the 1985-86 season;
Welcome Wagon: Milleson and her staff have received four commitments to join the Lady Bears in 2008 during the November early signing period. Local products Lacey Boshe (Marshfield, Mo.) and Casey Garrison (Bolivar, Mo.) will be joined by a pair of Texas prep standouts, Jasmine Malone (San Antonio) and Regan Soldner (Southlake) in the class of 2008.
For Openers: With their 92-55 loss at #22 Texas, the Lady Bears are now 20-19 all-time in season openers and have dropped their last four contests on opening night. The 37-point setback is the largest margin of defeat in a MSU season opener since the Lady Bears lost a 43-point decision (94-51) at Arkansas to start the 1985-86 season. It is also MSU’s worst loss since Jan. 6, 2002, when it fell by an 84-47 score at Creighton.
This season marks the fifth year in a row Missouri State has played its first game away from Hammons Student Center. Last year, MSU lost to Iowa, 79-70, in its season opener after dropping the first game of 2005-06 at Arkansas State and its 2004-05 opener at Richmond.
MSU vs. Ranked Opponents: With its 80-48 loss at #17 DePaul on Dec. 2, Missouri State dropped to 0-2 vs. ranked opponents on the season. The Lady Bears are now 19-36 all-time versus ranked opponents and have lost 10 straight against top 25 teams.
Missouri State’s last win over a ranked foe came against Gail Goestenkors’ fifth-ranked Duke Blue Devils in the 2001 NCAA West Regional semifinal (3/24/01).
MSU’s season opener at #22 Texas was the Lady Bears’ first opener versus a ranked opponent since the 2000-01 season when they defeated #10 LSU, 85-75. MSU is 2-2 all-time versus ranked teams in season openers.
Missouri State Postseason Run: One or both of the MSU basketball teams have made postseason appearances in each of the last 22 years.
With last year’s 7-21 finish, the Lady Bears missed the postseason for the first time since the 1996-97 season. The MSU women have seen postseason action in nine of the past 10 years and in 15 out of the last 17 seasons, dating back to the 1990-91 campaign.
Lady Bear Captains: Senior Tahnee Balerio, senior Tiff Terwelp and junior Tiffany Coppage will serve as tri-captains for the 2007-08 season. This marks the second year in a row Balerio and Terwelp have been selected Lady Bear captains.
If You Build It They Will Come: The Lady Bears are playing their 32nd and final season in Hammons Student Center in 2007-08. Missouri State broke ground on the $67 million JQH Arena on Dec. 21, 2006 in the east parking lot adjacent to Hammons. The new 11,000-seat arena is slated for completion in time for the start of the 2008-09 basketball season. Last year the Lady Bears drew 81,349 fans, or an average of 5,424 per contest, good for 18th in the nation. Missouri State has ranked in the top 20 nationally in average attendance in each of the last 17 seasons, including 1992-93 when the Lady Bears led all of Division I in that category.
Home Sweet Hammons: The Lady Bears are 323-107 (.751) at home since HSC opened in 1976-77. MSU has had 24 winning seasons, four losing campaigns and three seasons at .500 at HSC. The Lady Bears have gone undefeated at HSC six times (1989-90, 1991-92, 1993-94, 1995-96, 2000-01, 2003-04). From Dec. 18, 1990 to Dec. 27, 1992 the Lady Bears won 30 consecutive games at Hammons Student Center. MSU also had a 24-game winning streak dating from Feb. 15, 2003 before falling at home to #1 LSU in December of 2004. Over the last 18 seasons, Missouri State has averaged more than 13 wins per season and fewer than three losses in that same time. Missouri State has ranked in the top 15 nationally in attendance for 15 of the last 17 seasons and has been in the top 10 in 11 of those years.
Missouri State All-Time: Missouri State is in its 39th season of women’s collegiate basketball and has an all-time record of 659-449 (.595) for a total of 1,108 games. MSU began formal competition in 1969 and has now posted 26 winning seasons and made 13 NCAA Tournament appearances. The Lady Bears advanced to the Final Four in 1992 and 2001 and the Sweet Sixteen in 1993.