Conference opener on tap for Blue Raiders
MT set to begin 12th Sun Belt campaignDecember 20, 2011 · Athletic Communications
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Middle Tennessee women’s basketball will open its 12th season as a member of the Sun Belt Conference by playing host to FIU at 7 p.m. Wednesday in the league opener inside historic Murphy Center.
The Blue Raiders bring a 7-5 record into the meeting after defeating Tennessee State Sunday, 94-53. Four players reached double-figure scoring, including a trio of Kortni Jones (24 points), Ebony Rowe (21) and Icelyn Elie (20) above the 20-point plateau for the first time since January 2010. Elie added 10 rebounds for her third double-double of the season and sixth of her career.
Shanice Cason rounded out the quartet with a career-high 14 points to go along with her seven assists and zero turnovers. She has combined with Jones to post 58 assists and an over 2-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio in December.
Sunday’s output resulted in a season-high scoring effort, as Middle Tennessee knocked down a season-best 56.9 percent of its field goals and tallied 47 points in each half.
FIU, under the direction of 33rd-year head coach Cindy Russo, improved to 7-4 overall this season after back-to-back wins against Jacksonville State and Delaware State at the North Florida-hosted Comfort Inn Holiday Classic in Jacksonville, Fla.
The Panthers have won five of their last six games with the lone setback coming in their Sun Belt opener, dropping a 65-48 decision at Western Kentucky Dec. 11.<
The Blue Raiders lead the all-time series, 14-8, with wins in five of the last six meetings. The lone FIU victory came a year ago in Miami, as it escaped with a 62-59 triumph. However, MT bounced back with a 66-52 home win later in the year as part of the annual WBCA Pink Zone initiative.
The game can be heard on WMOT only Wednesday night due to a conflict with the men’s basketball team at Mississippi. Dick Palmer and Duane Hickey will call the action on 89.5 FM.
Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.
More Women's Basketball NewsMay 21, 2013: Ebony Rowe selected to Sun Belt Leadership Team
May 14, 2013: Blue Raiders sign High Point standout Parker
May 8, 2013: Insell set to be inducted into Cannon Courier Hall of Fame
Apr 15, 2013: Rowe named Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar
Apr 12, 2013: Women's basketball announces summer camp dates
Apr 8, 2013: Fuller resigns to accept position at Ole Miss