Who: South Dakota State (19-7 Overall, 11-2 Summit League)
at Western Illinois (11-13 overall, 4-7 Summit League)
Where: MACOMB • Western Hall - Waste Management Court
When: Saturday, February 16 - 4:30 p.m.
Series History: Western trails 11-1
FOLLOW THE ACTION
The Dog (88.3 FM) and WMQZ 104.1 FM
Talent: Michael Broskowski (play-by-play), Logan Sell (color)
Link to the Think Pink event article
LAST TIME OUT: Ashley Luke recorded her third double-double of the season and Paige Harmon scored a season-high 11 points off the bench - all in the second half - as Western withstood a late North Dakota State charge to win 55-50... The victory snapped a five-game losing streak for the Leathernecks... It also marked the first time in the last two seasons that Western won a game scoring less than 60 points, and also the first time Western ever swept the regular season series versus NDSU... Western led by 15 with eight minutes left before the Bison went on a 20-7 run. Dani DeGagne sank a 17-footer to make it a two-point game with 50 seconds left... Luke hit two free throws with 28 seconds left, then Rebecca Henricson sealed it when she hit the front end of a 1-and-1 for the final margin... Luke finished with 18 points (one off season-high), 11 rebounds, two blocks and two steals to lead Western... Harmon's 11 points came in just eight minutes played... Michelle Maher made it three freshmen in double-figures scoring 10.
UP NEXT: Western travels to Kansas City (Feb. 21) and South Dakota (Feb. 23) next week for the final regular season road trip. It could mark the final meeting between the Leathernecks and UMKC as conference members with the news that the Kangaroos will leave the Summit League in June.
LUKE CHALLENGING FOR NEWCOMER HONORS: Redshirt-freshman Ashley Luke continues to make a case for Summit League Newcomer of the Year for the Leathernecks. In the 11 conference games, she leads the squad with 12.4 points, 7.5 rebounds and 0.9 blocks per game, shooting 50.5 percent from the field... Luke is second on the team with 16 steals... Her 49 defensive rebounds surpass the total rebounds of all but one teammate... Overall she scored the second-most points (223) and tied for third at 9.3 points per game with a team-leading 6.7 rebounds. Her three double-doubles (Bradley, Kansas City, North Dakota State) also lead the squad.
HENRICSON TAKES THE POINT: Junior point guard Rebecca Henricson continues to rank among The Summit League leaders in assists while making a name for herself nationally... Henricson enters this weekend tied for fourth averaging 3.8 assists per game, while ranking tied for third in assist/turnover ratio at 1.9 (91 assists/48 turnovers). Henricson stands 43rd nationally in the ratio... Henricson has shown off her defense as well, now tied for seventh in the league averaging 1.7 steals per game... Over the past 10 games, Henricson has recorded 43 assists (including a career-high 11 at North Dakota State) to only 16 turnovers.
GRAVINA'S TEAMS NOW TOP TWO: With five regular season games left to play, Western Illinois already made the second-most 3-point field goals in program history with 183 and counting... Second-year head coach JD Gravina can now stake claim to the top two 3-point shooting teams in history, as last year's squad holds the record at 215... The previous record came five years ago (2007-08) at 155... Western needs to average just under what it has been making all season to break the record again - 7.6 per game good for 16th nationally.
SUMMIT LEAGUE 'TOP 10': Western leads the Summit League averaging 15.3 assists, 7.6 3-point field goals per game and 3.7 blocks... Western is second posting a 0.9 assist/turnover ratio, third in scoring offense (63.1 ppg) and fourth in 3-point shooting (.324)... Ashley Luke stands fourth in FG shooting (.473, best average by a freshman) and seventh at 6.7 rebounds. She's first with 2.8 offensive rebounds and sixth at 0.8 blocks... Rebecca Henricson stands tied for third averaging 3.7 assists, tied for seventh in steals (1.7) and second in assist/turnover ratio (1.9)... Saule Kontautaite is first in 3s made (2.1)... Michelle Maher is fourth averaging 1.9 3s per game... Charnelle Reed stands third in the league shooting .427 from 3-range and seventh averaging 1.6 3s per game... Rachel Evans is tied for ninth at 0.7 blocks.
NATIONALLY SPEAKING: Western Illinois women's basketball is currently nationally ranked 16th in 3-point field goals made per game (7.6), 52nd in assists per game (15.3), 79th in 3-point shooting percentage (.324), 44th in personal fouls per game (14.1) and 68th in assist to turnover ratio (0.92)... Rebecca Henricson ranks 43rd nationally in assist/turnover ratio (1.90).
ROUND ONE AT SDSU: Hot shooting by South Dakota State handed Western an 86-51 defeat in January... Western shot 29.2 percent (19-for-65) from the floor, 22.2 percent (6-for-27) beyond the arc and 58.2 (7-for-12) percent from the free throw line, while South Dakota State was 50.8 percent (32-for-63) from the field, 40.9 percent (9-for-22) from long range and 61.9 percent (13-for-21) from the line... Leading the Leathernecks in scoring was Ashley Luke with 13 points. Also reaching double figures with 10 points, which matched her season-high for the third time, was Rebecca Henricson... Saule Kontautaite and Luke each pulled down six rebounds in the contest to pace Western, while Henricson dished out a team-high three assists... Ashley Eide led the Jackrabbits with 16 points and three others reached double figures.
SCOUTING THE JACKRABBITS: Western Illinois will look to keep South Dakota State from clinching at least a share of the Summit League regular season title when the two teams play Saturday... Megan Waytashek leads the scoring at 14.6 points with Ashley Eide next at 13.7 ppg. The duo also lead in 3-point shooting with 51 and 43 made from beyond the arc, respectively... SDSU leads the Summit League scoring better than 66 points per game while holding opponents to under 60... Five Jackrabbits average at least 4.0 rebounds per game... SDSU could not clinch the title on Thursday night, losing at second place IUPUI 70-67... The Jaguars had not defeated SDSU ever, until now having swept the regular season series... SDSU was 1-of-17 shooting beyond the arc and committed 22 turnovers, but the team made 24-of-37 free throws... Waytashek led all scorers with 20 points. Eide added 11 and Mariah Clarin scored 11 off the bench... Western defeated SDSU in the first-ever meeting between the two teams, but since has lost 11 straight in the series.