Road trip to end regular season begins Thursday
Blue Raiders tied for third in school history with 16-game win streakFebruary 22, 2012 · Athletic Communications
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – The Middle Tennessee women’s basketball team, which has already locked up the league’s top record and Sun Belt’s East Division heading into the conference tournament, will begin a two-game road swing to conclude regular-season action at 5:30 p.m. Thursday when it travels to Monroe, La., to face ULM.
The Blue Raiders look to extend their current 16-game win streak, currently tied for third nationally and third in program history, when they face the Warhawks for the seventh time. Middle Tennessee has been victorious in each of the previous six meetings, dating back to 2006-07 when ULM joined the Sun Belt.
MT improved to 22-5 overall and 14-0 in league action following Saturday’s 65-41 triumph over Florida Atlantic on Senior Day inside the historic Murphy Center. The triumph raised Middle Tennessee’s home conference record to 61-1 during the last seven seasons, currently the top mark nationally during that time period.
Junior Kortni Jones enters Thursday’s contest on the verge of two single-season Sun Belt records. She needs one 3-pointer made and attempted to tie the league standards in both categories. Jones, who already owns the school marks for both listings, currently ranks second in the country with her 95 3-pointers this season.
ULM brings a 9-18 overall record into the contest, although the Warhawks are 7-7 in Sun Belt play and currently sit in a third-place tie in the West Division with North Texas.
Head coach Mona Martin’s squad last won Feb. 15, picking up a 70-67 overtime road win against the Mean Green. It was ULM’s second-straight conference victory, following a 55-52 home decision over South Alabama Feb. 11.
Larrie Williams paces the team with 14.9 points per game, while Marion Zollicoffer tops the squad with 6.3 rebounds per outing. While the Blue Raiders have three players with at least 100 caroms this season, including a pair (Ebony Rowe and Icelyn Elie surpassing the 200 mark), the balanced rebounding corps for ULM features five players with at least 100 and another, guard Elizabeth Torres, needing just four to join them.
Rowe, Jones and Elie are the top-three Middle Tennessee scorers with averages of 16.5, 16.3 and 13.6 points respectively. In Sun Belt play only, the Blue Raider offense is led by Jones’ 17.5 ppg, followed by Rowe and Elie’s 16.4 and 14.7 averages.
Middle Tennessee also continued to receive votes in both of the weekly national polls, ranking 30th by the USA Today/ESPN Coaches and 35th by the Associated Press.
Dick Palmer will call all the action on the Blue Raider Network of WMOT (89.5 FM) and WGNS (1450 AM, 100.5 FM, 101.9 FM).
In addition, 2012 Sun Belt Conference Tournament booklets are on sale at the Middle Tennessee athletic ticket office. Cost per booklet is $83 and includes a ticket to all eight sessions of the Sun Belt Championships, March 4-6, in Hot Springs, Ark. Fans can purchase booklets by calling 1-888-YES-MTSU or visiting goblueraiders.com.
The Blue Raiders are guaranteed to play in the first quarterfinal, at Noon, Sunday March 4, inside the Summit Arena.
Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.
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