Fighting Leatherneck Women's Basketball Returns to Western Hall
Courtesy: Western Illinois Athletics  
Release: Sunday 01/07/2013
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MACOMB, Ill. - Western Illinois women's basketball will test its perfect 5-0 mark at home against Chicago State on Tuesday (Jan. 8) at 7 p.m. The Leathernecks are an even 7-7 overall and 1-2 in Summit League play, while Chicago State is 1-14 on the season.

In their last contest on Saturday (Jan. 5), the Leathernecks fell to conference member IUPUI 55-36. The game marks Western's second consecutive loss and the team's 36 total points is a season low. Western shot 23.3 percent from field goal range, 7.1 percent from three-point range and 60.0 percent from the free throw line, while IUPUI posted a field goal percentage of 33.3, a three-point percentage of 23.1 and a 57.1 free throw percentage.

Rebecca Henricson led the team with nine points, while Michele Salvatori pulled down a team-high seven rebounds. The squad recorded seven blocks in the contest, including two apiece from Michelle Maher and Salvatori. Maher also posted a team-high two assists.


THE BREAKDOWN

THE MATCHUP
Who: Chicago State (1-14 Overall) at Western Illinois (7-7 Overall, 1-2 Summit League)
Where: Macomb, Ill. • Western Hall (5,139)
When: Tuesday, Jan. 8 at 7 p.m.
Series History: Western leads 30-1

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GAME NOTES

LAST TIME OUT: Western Illinois women’s basketball dropped its last matchup at IUPUI 55-36 on Saturday (Jan. 5)… The loss brings the squad’s conference record to 1-2 and its overall record to 7-7… Rebecca Henricson paced the Leathernecks netting nine points and stealing two, along with Michelle Maher who also swiped two… Michele Salvatori pulled down a team-high seven rebounds… Western recorded seven blocks in the contest including two apiece from Maher and Salvatori… The Leathernecks shot 23.3 percent from field goal range, 7.1 percent from three-point range and 60.0 percent from the free throw line, while IUPUI posted a field goal percentage of 33.3, a three-point percentage of 23.1 and a 57.1 free throw percentage.

SCOUTING THE COUGARS:
Chicago State, a member of the Great West Conference, brings an overall mark of 1-14 into the matchup… Tierra Williams leads the team in points with 139 (9.3 ppg), while Layne Murphy has a team-high 97 rebounds (6.5 rpg)… Leading the team in assists with 48 (3.2 apg) and steals with 30 (2.0 spg) is Jackie Jones… Murphy has a team-high 20 blocks (1.3 bpg) this season… The Cougar roster consists of four freshmen, five sophomores and two seniors… Chicago State is led by 10th-year head coach Angela Jackson.

SERIES HISTORY: Western leads Chicago State 30-1 in all-time meetings… The squads last met on Jan. 22, 2007 and the Leathernecks recorded a 63-51 victory at home.

HOME COURT ADVANTAGE: Western is a perfect 5-0 when playing games on Waste Management Court in Western Hall… The home stand includes a 85-35 win over Clarke, a 69-55 victory over Valparaiso, a 70-53 win against William Woods, a 70-68 win over Eastern Illinois and a most recently 92-81 victory over Bradley… These five games are the five highest scoring efforts of the season for the Leathernecks… The last two wins at home, against Eastern Illinois and Bradley, were come from behind victories.

NATIONALLY SPEAKING: As of Jan. 6, Western Illinois women’s basketball ranks 25th in threes per game (7.4), 48th in personal fouls per game (14.3), 85th in blocks per game (4.1) and 99th in three-point field goal percentage (32.0)... Saule Kontautaite ranks 95th in threes made per game (2.14) and Rebecca Henricson is 98th in assist to turnover ratio (1.5).

SUMMIT LEAGUE STATLINE: The Leathernecks are ranked first in the conference in threes made (104), assists (14.7 apg) and blocks (4.1 bpg)... The team also ranks fourth in points per game (63.7) and field goal percentage (40.1) and fifth in three-point percentage (32.0) and steals per game (8.1)... Saule Kontautaite is third in threes per game (2.1), fifth in points per game (14.4) and field goals per game (5.3) and eighth in field goal percentage (44.3)... Rebecca Henricson is fifth in assist to turnover ratio (1.5) and seventh in assists (48) and steals (26)... Michelle Maher is fourth in threes per game (2.1) and tied for seventh in blocks (11)... Charnelle Reed is third in three point percentage (43.9), Karis Phillips is third in assist to turnover ratio (1.9), Rachel Evans ranks sixth in blocks (12) and Ashley Luke is tied for seventh in blocks (11).

DRAINING THREES: A balanced attack from long range is the main reason why Western is the nation's 25th team shooting the three-pointer this season (through stats on Jan. 6)... Saule Kontautaite and Michelle Maher each average 2.1 threes per game to lead the squad... Nine of the 13 Leathernecks that have attempted a three this year have knocked at least one down... After setting the season record last year for most threes, Western's current three-point total of 103 is now just one shy of tying for 10th place on the 'Top 10' list.

IMPROVEMENT: The Leatherneck women's basketball team's overall record of 7-7 marks the best start to a season since 2005-06 when Western earned a 12-2 record in the first 14 games of the year... The 2005-06 team went on to win the regular season conference title and play in the WNIT.

TEAM LEADERS: Saule Kontautaite leads the team in the following categories: field goals made with 74 (5.3 fg/g), threes made with 30 (2.1 3fg/g) and points with 202 (14.4 ppg)... Rebecca Henricson paces the squad in assists with 48 (3.4 apg) and steals with 26 (1.9 spg)... Leading the team in field goal percentage with 46.7 (7-for-15) and three point percentage with 62.5 (5-for-8) is Sophie Reichelt... Ashley Luke has a team-high 83 rebounds (5.9 rpg), Rachel Evans has blocked a team-high 12 shots (0.9 bpg) and Jackie Rieger has netted a team most 31 free throws (2.2 ft/g).

THREE-POINT UPDATE: Two members of the Leatherneck senior class are climbing the career three-point 'Top 10' list... Saule Kontautaite is currently tied for sixth place with 97 total threes made and is five away from tying the fifth place mark of 102 held by Doshia Woods (2000-01)... Michele Salvatori ranks ninth in the standings with 84 and is six threes from tying Michelle Nason's (1991-92) eighth place mark of 90.

THREE-POINT RECORD MATCHED: Earlier this season, and the second time in JD Gravina's tenure, Western Illinois set a program record hitting 15 three-point field goals... Western drained 15 in the home-opening win verses Clarke, matching the total set last year against Oakland.

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