Dec. 19, 2009
ECU Women's Basketball Gameday Central
Complete Game Notes in PDF Format
TAMPA, Fla. - The East Carolina women's basketball team looks to improve to 9-1 Saturday, facing Houston-Baptist in game one of the USF Shootout at the Sun Dome. ECU is coming off of a 65-61 victory at Hampton last Saturday that made head coach Sharon Baldwin-Tener the winningest head coach in school history as she has won 111 games at the helm of the program.
The Lady Pirates and Huskies meet for the first time in each programs' histories. Houston-Baptist enters the event with a record of 2-9, having most recently dropped a pair of contests to LSU and Louisiana-Lafayette at the inaugural Sue Gunter Classic in Baton Rouge, La.
Meanwhile, ECU has won eight of its nine games, including five by double digits. Sophomore Ashley Clarke has scored in double figures in eight affairs and leads the team with a 13.8 scoring average while junior Allison Spivey paces the squad in three-point shooting and is second in scoring at 11.2 points per contest.
If the Lady Pirates beat the Huskies, they will improve to 9-1 for just the third time in program history.
OTHERS TAKING NOTE
AMONG THE NATIONAL LEADERS
Lady Pirate fans are not the only people taking note of the team's play so far this season. In the fifth ESPN/USA Today Top 25 poll, East Carolina received 13 votes. The squad has now received votes for four consecutive weeks. It also marks the second-straight campaign in which the Lady Pirates have appeared on the list. ECU garnered as many as six votes during the 2008-09 season.
The Lady Pirates have played solid basketball thus far this season, and it has shown in the national statistics rankings. ECU is 10th in field goal percentage (.474) and three-point FG defense (.231), 19th in winning percentage (.889), 24th in assists per game (16.7) and 48th in rebound margin (+6.0). Additionally, Allison Spivey
ranks 12th in three-point field goal percentage (.514) while Ashley Clarke
checks in at 26th in assists per game (5.7).
DOUBLE DIGITS DESIRED
There are four players who have reached double-digit points in at least four games this season. When those Lady Pirates reach the 10-point plateau, ECU has lost just once.
FIRST TO 30...FIELD GOALS
East Carolina converted 30 field goals versus VCU, marking the 17th time since the start of the 2006-07 campaign that the Lady Pirates have accomplished the feat. ECU has turned the trick four time already this season.
SHARING IS CARING (AND WINNING)
During the preseason, Baldwin-Tener called her 2009-10 Lady Pirates
the most unselfish team she has coached. Those words have rung true so far in the season, as ECU has recorded 150 assists to its opponents' 110. Additionally, the squad is 7-0 this season when recording more helpers than its opponent. The Lady Pirates are ahead of last year's pace when the team ranked second in C-USA, averaging 16.19 assists per contest.
PICK-POCKETING THE COMPETITION
Lady Pirate opponents might want to secure the ball better from this point forward, as ECU is averaging 10 steals in nine games. The Lady Pirates recorded 16 of them against Western Carolina and 15 in the contest vs. Bethune-Cookman.
NICE NON-CONFERENCE NOTE
East Carolina has always regarded non-conference games as a chance to get better before heading into the rigors of C-USA play. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that the Lady Pirates have recently excelled in those affairs. In its last 22 non-league games, ECU has produced a record of 17-5 (.773). Four of the five losses, to VCU, North Carolina A&T, Virginia and Marist, occurred during the 2008-09 season and all four teams qualified for the NCAA Tournament.
BENCH IS NOT BAD
It seems like the Lady Pirate bench gets deeper with each passing season and is an extension of the starting five. There is some truth to that statement, as East Carolina's bench has outscored its opponents' benches in 33 of the last 40 games.
FIRING AT 50
The Lady Pirates are off to another great shooting start, firing at a .474 clip in nine contests. ECU has shot 50 percent or above in eight of 18 halves.