Ladyjacks Battle Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
March 9, 2007
HOUSTON, Texas - The Stephen F. Austin Ladyjack basketball team never trailed against No. 7 seed Lamar Wednesday in the opening round of the O'Reilly Auto Parts Southland Conference Championships. The Ladyjacks dispensed the SLC East Division team, 73-65, Wednesday afternoon in the first game of the tournament. The victory handed SFA its 20th win of the season and places them in the semifinals for a second consecutive season. The Ladyjacks will face No. 6 seed Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Friday in the second round of the tournament. The Islanders (15-15) advanced to the semifinals after defeating Texas State in overtime of their opening round game. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi has won two consecutive games, and three of its last five games heading into to Friday's match-up against SFA. The game against the Islanders is slated to begin at noon from the Campbell Center.
The Ides of March: The Ladyjacks enter the 2007 SLC Championships looking to win their 16th SLC tournament title and make their 19th appearance in the NCAA Championships.
Been There, Done That: The 2007 Southland Conference Championship tournament marks the 20th consecutive trip to the conference playoffs for SFA. In fact, SFA has advanced to the league tournament every year since joining the league.
SFA in the SLC Championships: The Ladyjacks have been the Southland Conference's most dominant team in the league tournament. SFA is 37-4 (.902) all-time in the SLC Championships. The Ladyjacks have earned the league's automatic bid into the NCAA Championships 14 times, with one runner-up finish.
Tradition of Winning: The SFA Ladyjack basketball program has been one of the most dominant programs in women's basketball history. The Ladyjacks are among the nation's all-time top 10 with 793 wins. The Ladyjacks are also among the all-time top 10 with a .730 winning percentage (793-294).
Tradition of Winning in the SLC: As dominant as SFA has been nationally, they have been just as dominant in the Southland Conference. The Ladyjacks are the conference's most dominant team, compiling a 289-49 (.855) all-time record. SFA has won 15 of a possible 19 SLC tournament titles and 14 regular-season titles. SFA has also recorded four undefeated seasons in league play and has had 44 players named All-SLC.
Riley vs. the SLC: Ladyjack head coach Lee Ann Riley has compiled a dominant record against Southland Conference foes. Riley is 74-30 (.712) against SLC teams during the regular season.
Home Sweet Home: The Ladyjacks are one of the nation's all-time winningest teams at home, with a 354-89 (.799) all-time record. SFA has won 31 of its last 39 games at home and was a perfect 14-0 at home last season. The Ladyjacks were 9-4 (.692) at home this season.
Being the Two Seed: The 2007 SLC Championship tournament marks the third time that SFA has entered postseason as the league's No. 2 seed (1995 and 2003). The Ladyjacks are 4-1 (.800) all-time in the tournament when entering as the second seed.
The Benchmark: Success in collegiate basketball is often marked by the 20-win plateau. The Ladyjacks eight-point victory against Lamar Wednesday afternoon in the opening round of the SLC Championships marked the second consecutive season that SFA has recorded at least 20 wins in a season. It also marks the 26th time in school history that SFA has recorded at least 20 victories in a season.
Making a Return to the Semifinals: The Ladyjacks are making their 17th trip to the SLC tournament semifinals, and its second in as many years. The Ladyjacks are 15-1 (.938) all-time in SLC semifinal games. The lone semifinal loss came in 2003 when the Ladyjacks dropped a 64-56 decision to Texas State. Last season, the Ladyjacks recorded a 72-71 overtime victory over Louisiana-Monroe in the conference semifinals. That game also served as the last time SFA played an overtime game.
SFA vs. the No. 1 Lady Mavs: The Ladyjacks are 41-11 (.788) all-time against top-seeded Texas-Arlington. UTA has had some success in the series of late winning seven of the last eight meetings, including a sweep of the 2006-07 series. The Ladyjacks are 5-2 (.714) all-time against the Lady Mavs in the SLC Championship tournament.
SFA vs. the No. 5 Roadrunners: The Ladyjacks are 29-6 (.829) all-time against Texas-San Antonio. The two teams have split the last eight meetings, but UTSA had the upper hand this season winning both regular-season games. The Ladyjacks are a perfect 3-0 versus UTSA in the Southland Conference Championships.
SFA vs. the No. 6 Islanders: The Ladyjacks are 2-2 (.500) all-time against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, with the Ladyjacks sweeping the 2006-07 season series. The 2006-07 season marks the Islanders' inaugural season in the Southland Conference.
Players of the Week: The Ladyjacks were honored by the league on three separate occasions with the SLC Player of the Week award. Senior Evelyn Edwards received her first-career honor Tuesday, Nov. 21st. Classmate Charity Egenti received the award on Monday, Dec. 11th and Tuesday, Jan. 9th.
SFA in Televised Games: The SLC Championship game will be televised on Fox Sports Southwest Saturday, Mar. 10th. If SFA advances to the championship game it would mark the 27th time that SFA has played in front of a televised audience. The Ladyjacks 16-10 (.667) all-time in televised games. SFA went 1-2 (.333) in televised games this season.
All-SLC: The Ladyjacks placed three players on the 2007 All-SLC team. Senior Charity Egenti earned first-team honors and was named 2007 SLC Player of the Year, while junior Nikki Carr received third-team honors. Egenti finished second in the league in scoring (16.9 ppg) and blocked shots (1.8 bpg) and led the SLC in rebounding (9.5 rpg). Carr was second on the team averaging 10.6 ppg. She finished seventh in the league averaging 3.8 assist per game, and was second in the SLC in steals (2.6 spg). Senior Evelyn Edwards earned honorable mention all-conference honors during her senior season.
Double-Doubles: The Ladyjacks recorded 19 double-doubles as a team in 2006-07. SFA was led by senior Charity Egenti who finished second in the league with 11. Classmate Evelyn Edwards added four double-doubles, while junior Nikki Carr recorded two and seniors Natalie Kizzee and Jennifer Simpson each recorded one.
Crashing the Boards: The Ladyjacks are the league's top rebounding team. SFA led the conference averaging 44.3 rebounds per game, and also led the league with a +6.0 rebounding margin. The Ladyjacks pulled down at least 50 rebounds in a game 10 times this season, including a season-high 59 against McNeese State.
SLC Leaders: The Ladyjacks lead the league in a few other statistical categories other than rebounds and rebound margin. SFA also led the league in defensive rebounds (27.3 rpg), field-goal percent defense (.367) and blocked shots (4.2).
Kizz It Off the Glass: Senior Natalie Kizzee came off the bench to play a huge role for SFA in its eight-point victory against Lamar. With Evelyn Edwards on the bench with foul trouble, and classmate Charity Egenti struggling offensively, SFA head coach Lee Ann Riley not only needed Kizzee to play a lot of minutes, but to become a factor on both the offense and defensive ends. Mission accomplished. Kizzee played 27 minutes scored 11 points on 5-of-9 shooting. She also grabbed nine rebounds and recorded two steals.
Attacking the Glass: Senior Charity Egenti might have struggled from the floor in the Ladyjacks' opening round game against Lamar, but she more than made up for it in the rebound column. Egenti pulled down a game-high 18 rebounds, including 11 offensive boards against the Lady Cardinals. The 18 boards were only one shy of her career-high which she set earlier this season against Nicholls State. It marked the 12th time this season that Egenti has recorded at least 10 rebounds in a game.
The Pace Carr: Senior Nikki Carr had been struggling offensively, scoring only 18 points in the team's last four games, and not recording a three-point field goal in the team's last three contests. But she broke out of her slump in the Ladyjacks opening round game against Lamar. Carr paced the Ladyjacks with 21 points on 8-of-17 shooting. She was also 3-of-6 (.500) from beyond the three-point arc. Carr finished the game with nine rebounds, two steals, an assist and a block.
20-Somethings: Junior Nikki Carr's 21-point outing against Lamar in the SLC tournament opening game marked the 16th time this season that SFA has had a player score at least 20 points in a game. Egenti leads the 10 with 20-point games this season.
Production Off the Bench: The depth of the Ladyjacks' bench was never more evident than in Wednesday's SLC tournament opening round game against Lamar. The Ladyjacks' bench outscored Lamar's, 32-10.
Nacogdoches Block Party: Senior Charity Egenti recorded three blocks last week, which places her among the school's all-time top 10 in that category. Egenti is eighth all-time at SFA with 85 career swats. Teammate Evelyn Edwards is currently 10th all-time at SFA with 68.
Arc Angel: Nikki Carr is among the school's list of all-time three-point shooters and she is only a junior. She is currently seventh all-time with 96 career threes.
Up Next ... If SFA wins the SLC tournament, it will receive the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Championships. The first round of the tournament will be Saturday, Mar. 17 and Sunday, Mar. 18. The selection show will be Monday, Mar. 12 at 7 p.m. Central time on ESPN.