USC Upstate (12-9, 8-4) vs. FGCU (17-1, 10-1)
DATE: Saturday, Feb. 5, 2011
CITY: Fort Myers, Fla.
SITE: Alico Arena (4,500)
TIP-OFF: 7:05 p.m. ET
LIVE AUDIO: www.FGCUATHLETICS.com
TALENT: Tom James (Play-by-Play)
LIVE STATS: www.FGCUATHLETICS.com
LIVE VIDEO: A-Sun.TV SERIES: FGCU leads, 4-1
The Eagles are set to begin their two-game homestand when they host the Spartans of USC Upstate in A-Sun action at Alico Arena on Feb. 5 (7:05 p.m.). The Blue and Green, who are 4-1 all-time vs. the Spartans, will face Upstate for the first time this season after their first meeting was cancelled due to weather.
WE’RE GOING STREAKING
FGCU has not lost a home game in Alico Arena since January 8, 2009 against East Tennessee State University. FGCU’s 87-52 win over Mercer (Jan. 17) bumped the Eagles home win streak to 32 games. FGCU’s 32-game home winning streak is the third longest streak in the nation behind UConn and Stanford.
1. Connecticut (73)
2. Stanford (56)
3. FGCU (32)
4. West Virginia, Tennessee (30)
Sarah Hansen, Shannon Murphy and Kelsey Jacobson have combined to account for 51.3 percent (36.4 points per game) of FGCU’s scoring. The trio is also shooting .436 (232-of-532) from the floor and .357 (100-of-280) from long distance.
WE MUST PROTECT THIS HOUSE
FGCU has a 127-9 (.934) all-time record at home. Since moving to Division I, the Eagles have compiled a 49-3 (.942) home record.
Alico Arena has become one of the most intimidating places for opposing teams in all of Division I women’s basketball. The Eagles have accumulated a 49-3 record on their home court since moving to Division I, good for a .942 winning percentage. Only Tennessee, who has a .944 winning percentage (335-20), has a higher all-time winning percentage at home (Thompson-Boling Arena).
ALLOW ME TO REINTRODUCE MYSELF
Sarah Hansen signed with FGCU on April 27, 2009, but utilized a redshirt during the 2009-10 season. Hansen took all of last season to work on her game and become acclimated and comforable in Coach Smesko’s offense and it’s paying dividends in 2010-11.
Hansen currently ranks first on the team in field goal pct. (.536) and rebounds (6.3 rpg) and scoring (13.1 ppg). The redshirt-freshman’s .536 shooting percentage leads the A-Sun and ranks her 30th in the nation.
FGCU IN FEBRUARY
• FGCU has an all-time record of 50-6 in games played in the month of February.
• Since moving to Division I in 2007-08 the Eagles hold a 21-3 record in the month of February, 20-3 against A-Sun opponents.
With three players averaging double figure points and three more at 6.5 points per game or higher, FGCU leads the A-Sun in scoring at a 70.9 per game clip. The Eagles have scored 73 or more points nine times this season and are the only A-Sun team with a scoring margin larger the three-points (+16.1). Five different players have led the Blue and Green in scoring this season, led by eight from freshman Sarah Hansen, four from juniors Eglah Griffin and Kelsey Jacobson and three from senior Shannon Murphy.
GET READY, GET SET GO!
During its 10-1 start in A-Sun play, FGCU has gotten out of the gates quick to take control of the game. Over the first 20 minutes in each of their conference games, the Eagles are out-scoring their opponents 407-272. Fueling that big differential is the fact that FGCU is shooting 44.4 percent (147-331) from the floor, while limiting their opponents to 34.0 percent (100-294) clip with 126 turnovers. Senior Shannon Murphy and redshirt freshman Sarah Hansen have done the most damage individually in the first half, averaging 8.4 points each, by the break. Three of FGCU’s 10 A-Sun opponents haven’t reached 20 points at the half.
FGCU’s three-point prowess has been the program’s calling card from day one and the 2010-11 version of the Eagles is no different. Through its first 16 games, FGCU leads the nation with an average of 11.2 threes per game, nearly two trifectas in front of second place Fresno State (9.9). As a team, FGCU has sank double-digit threes in 11 games this season, including 125 over its last 10 contests.
RANK TEAM, 3-PT FG/GAME
1. FGCU, 11.2
2. Fresno State, 9.9
3. Samford, 8.8
4. UT Martin, 8.5
THREE IS THE KEY
• The Eagles are 14-1 this season when shooting 23 or more three-pointers.
• The Blue and Green are 17-1 on the year when they drain five or more shots from beyond the arc.
• FGCU is undefeated in 2010-11 when they knock down more three-point shots than their opponent.
• Nine of the 11 players who have seen time this season have at least two threes.
LEADER OF THE PACK
With 56 of her 66 made field goals come from beyond the arc this season, junior Kelsey Jacobson ranks first in the A-Sun (6th in the nation) at 3.11 treys per game. Jacobson has knocked down 56-of-152 three-pointers this season to also rank seventh in the league at a 36.8 clip. The Barnesville, Minn. native has made multi-threes in 17 of 18 games, highlighted by a 6-of-7 night against FIU that tied a career-high for makes.
Surrounding its opponents with a balanced scoring attack, FGCU has knocked down 201 threes this season compared to just 77 from its opponents. Led by junior Kelsey Jacobson’s 3.11 trifectas per contest, seven different players have made 10 or more shots from long range. Junior Eglah Griffin leads the A-Sun in three point percentage (.427), while Shannon Murphy (1.94) is 11th in the conference in 3-pointers made per game. FGCU is the only team in the A-Sun with three players in the top 11 in three-pointers made.
MAKING A LIVING FROM LONG RANGE
It’s no secret that junior Kelsey Jacobson is FGCU’s top three-point threat. Through 78 career games, Jacobson has knocked down 209 three-pointers to rank second all-time behind Candy Myers’ (2003-06) 212. Jacobson has made a three in 34 straight games, 51 of her last 52 contests and 73 of 78 for her career. During her career, Jacobson has made 3+ threes 40 times, 5+ threes on 10 occasions and a career-best of six twice.
In the program’s nine-year history (264) games, FGCU has made at least one three-pointer in 263 contests, including 151 straight. The last and lone time the Eagles didn’t knock down a three was February 21, 2006 at Lynn. During the current 151-game run, the Blue and Green have knocked down 1,432 money balls while their opponents have knocked down 747 threes. In games that it has drained double-digit threes, FGCU is 93-6 all-time and 48-4 since moving to Division I in 2007-08.
FGCU RANKED #4 IN MID-MAJOR POLL
The Florida Gulf Coast women’s basketball team earned the No. 4 spot in this week’s CollegeInsider.com Women’s Mid-Major Top 25 poll, announced on Tuesday evening. The Blue and Green, who picked up six votes in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll to rank No. 32 in the nation, are one of two one-loss team’s represented in the poll (Green Bay; 20-1).
The FGCU women’s basketball team received 6 votes in this week’s USA Today/ESPN Top 25 Coaches’ Poll to rank No. 32.
PROTECTING THE ROCK
Already shooting at an A-Sun-best 42.0 percent from the field, FGCU sports the conference’s lowest turnover per game rate at 14.3. The Eagles have had a positive assist/turnover ratio in 11 of their last 16 games resulting in a +7.56 turnover margin also best in the A-Sun. Junior Courtney Chihil, who is eighth in the A-Sun in assists (4.1), leads the conference in assist/turnover ratio at +1.92 thanks to passing out 51 helpers to just 27 giveaways over the last 13 games. Senior Shannon Murphy is right behind Chihil in second place with a +1.54 ratio while ranking fifth in the A-Sun at 4.4 assists per game.
In 502 minutes of action this season, Kelsey Jacobson has launched 176 shots and assisted on 50 field goals, while turning the ball over just 17 times.
MURPHY LEAVING A MARK ON THE FGCU RECORD BOOKS
Shannon Murphy has scored 995 points in her four-year career in the FGCU Blue and Green. With 5 more points the senior will become the third 1,000-point scorer in program history.
Murphy has also dished 366 assists and recorded 144 steals as an Eagle, which makes her the program’s all-time leader in those categories
1415 Adrianne McNally (128 games) - 2006-10
1062 Katie Schrader (65 games) - 2005-07
995 Shannon Murphy (106 games) - 2007-Present
953 Candy Myers (87 games) - 2003-06
366 Shannon Murphy - 2007-Present
338 Megan Jones - 2002-05
335 Adrianne McNally - 2006-10
144 Shannon Murphy - 2007-Present
141 Candy Myers - 2003-06
137 Megan Jones - 2002-05