Women's Basketball to Host National Independent Tournament
Thursday, February 23, 2006
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The 12th ranked Florida Gulf Coast University women’s basketball team will close its regular season when it hosts the eight-team National Independent Tournament this weekend, Feb. 24-26, at Alico Arena. The field includes Central State University, University of District of Columbia, University of Puerto Rico at Bayamon, Upper Iowa University, Converse College, Claflin College, and Johnson & Wales University. The Eagles, currently on a 13-game winning streak, enter their final weekend of regular season play with a 25-1 mark and are ranked No. 5 in the South Region. FGCU also finds itself near the top of Division II in a host of statistical categories. FGCU is tops among all Division II teams in scoring margin at 28.7 points and fourth in win/loss percentage (96.0). Defensively, the Eagles are second nationally in scoring defense, holding opponents to 46.6 points per game, and sixth in field goal percentage defense at 33.3 %. The Eagles are also eighth in rebounding margin at plus 8.8. Offensively, they are third in three-pointers made per game at 8.7. The Eagles are led in scoring and rebounding by junior forward Katie Schrader (Fort Collins, Colo.). Schrader, who ranks 15th nationally in field goal percentage (57.9%), averages 15.4 points and 6.7 rebounds per contest. Senior guard Candy Myers, who became the school’s all-time leading scorer this season, is second in scoring at 11.5 points per game. Junior forward Jen Conely (Warren, Minn.) averages 10.8 points per game off the bench. Conely is 14th in Division II for three-point field goals made per game at 2,8 with Myers right behind in 22nd at 2.6. Senior guard Ebonie Halliburton (East St. Louis, Ill.) leads the team in assists with 109 while chipping in with 9.7 points per game and junior forward Alex Nelson (Edinburgh, Scotland) leads the team in steals with 48 while averaging 8.7 points per game. The Eagles will face Johnson & Wales in a first-round match-up. The full bracket is listed below. Friday, Feb. 25 Game 1: Central State 44 District of Columbia 56 Game 2: PR-Bayamon 66 Upper Iowa 53 Game 3: Converse 48 Claflin 55 Game 4: Johnson & Wales 31 FGCU 61 Saturday, Feb. 26 Game 5: Central State 57 Upper Iowa 43 Game 6: Converse vs. 72 Johnson Wales 61 Game 7: Claflin vs. 48 FGCU 61 Game 8 UDC vs. 60 Puerto Rico - Bayamon 58 Sunday, Feb. 27 Championship: FGCU vs. 78 UDC 42 All-Tournament Team: UPR-Bayamon: Pamela Rasado Claflin: Lakisha Griffin UDC: Jaime Brown Diedra Bumbrey FGCU: Alex Nelson Kate Schrader (MVP)