Joplin, Mo. - After clinching a top four spot in the MIAA and a berth to Kansas City for the MIAA Tournament next week with a win over Lindenwood on Thursday, the Missouri Southern Lions women's basketball team wraps up the regular season on Saturday at Lincoln for a 1:30 p.m. tipoff from Jason Gym in Jefferson City.
Teams: Missouri Southern Lions (18-7, 12-6 MIAA) vs. Lincoln Blue Tigers (5-20, 2-16)
Date: Saturday, March 1, 2014
Tip-Off: 1:30 p.m., CT
Location: Jefferson City, Mo.
Site: Jason Gym (3,000)
Series Record: MSSU leads 25-5 (Home: 13-1, Away: 9-4, Neutral: 3-0)
Coaches: Ronda Hubbard (18-7 at MSSU, overall). Nicole Collier (16-36 at Lincoln, overall).
MSSU Radio: KZYM-AM 1230 The Talker, Mike McClure, Play-by-Play
Live Stats: http://lubluetigers.com/custompages/2013-14%20WBK/LiveStats/xlive.htm
Live Video: http://www.americaonesports.com/partner_members.asp?id=293
Lions on Facebook: Facebook.com/missourisouthernlions
Lions on Twitter: @mososports
Last time out for the Lions (18-7, 12-6 MIAA): The Missouri Southern women's basketball team overcame a three-point halftime deficit and used three players in double figures to down the Lindenwood Lady Lions 71-61 this evening at Hyland Arena as they secured a top four finish in the MIAA and earned a berth to Kansas City for next week's MIAA Tournament.
The Lions (18-7, 12-6 MIAA) were led in scoring by Alexis Fitzpatrick as she led the way with 18 points finishing 4-for-9 from the floor and 8-for-10 from the free throw line. Sharese Jones added 15 points and a team-high eight rebounds while Shonte Clay chipped in 11 points. Dominique Mosley and Nicole Hartzog also added eight points each. The Lions shot nearly 50% from the field as they finished the evening 23-for-49 (.469) while hitting 22-for-28 (.786) from the free throw line.
Southern trailed 29-26 at afternoon as Lindenwood continued to lead by four (32-28) after the first three minutes of the second half, but four straight points from Jones tied the game at 32 apiece with 15:56 to play. Looking to pull away after taking the lead for good on a jumper by Fitzpatrick, the Lady Lions held tough over the next eight plus minutes never trailing by more than four until the Lions went on a 10-4 run to open up a 55-48 lead with 5:38 to go.
Responding to a three-pointer by LWU that brought them within one at 45-44, the Lions reeled off eight straight points getting a pair of three-pointers from Shawnee Phillips and Fitzpatrick along with a layup from Phillips. Southern was in the driver's seat from there as they went 8-for-10 from the free throw line in the final 90 seconds to secure the victory and a berth to Kansas City.
Last time out for the Blue Tigers (5-20, 2-16 MIAA): The Lincoln women's basketball team had a six-point lead, but hot second-half shooting allowed Lindenwood to hand the Blue Tigers a 63-56 loss on Saturday (Feb. 22).
The key to Lindenwood's win was hot-shooting in the second half, as the Lady Lions made 13 of their 22 field goal attempts (59.1%). The Blue Tigers, who had given up just eight made field goals in 26 attempts (30.8%) in the first half, held Lindenwood to only two made shots from long distance, but scored just four treys of their own. For the game, Lincoln finished 22-for-57 from the floor (38.6%) and just 8-for-16 (50.0%) from the free throw line.\
Lincoln blocked five shots on Saturday, with Jaleisha Barrett, Quiessence Price, Rosado, Wright and Frazier each rejecting one shot apiece. The Blue Tigers held a slight advantage in the turnover battle (14-15), but Lindenwood held the edge in rebounding (35-34). The Blue Tigers forced six steals while Lindenwood had only three.
Randall led Lincoln offensively with 15 points and four assists while pulling down a team-best six rebounds. Randall also had a steal. Two other Blue Tigers scored in double figures, with Yoakum adding 14 points and Rosado tallying 10. Rosado also contributed four rebounds and a steal.
The Coaches: Ronda Hubbard (18-7) is in her 13th year on the staff at Missouri Southern and was promoted to the position of Interim Head Coach on July 2, 2013 after the retirement of Maryann Mitts. During her 12 years with the Lions, she has helped the team to a 189-145 record, including winning marks and a trip to the MIAA post season tournament in all by one of those 12 seasons.
Nicole Collier (16-36) is in her second season as the head coach of the Lincoln women's basketball team and enters this afternoon's game with a 16-36 overall record. In her first year on the job, Collier led the team to 11 wins and its second-consecutive berth in the MIAA Women's Basketball Championship tournament. The season was highlighted by an appearance on the MIAA Network, where Lincoln defeated a Northeastern State team that was receiving votes in the national coaches poll, 54-49. Under Collier's guidance, two Blue Tigers earned All-MIAA recognition.
The series between the two schools: The Lions lead the overall series with Lincoln 25-5 winning this year's previous matchup 86-62 at home over the Blue Tigers. Hartzog scored a career-high 26 points while Jones chipped in 18 points. Southern won last year's game in Jefferson City 67-55 and holds a 9-4 overall record at Lincoln.
Scouting the Blue Tigers: The Lincoln women enter Saturday's game ranking 7th in the MIAA in blocks and steals, 10th in free throw percentage and 3-point field goal percentage defense and 12th in 3-point field goal percentage. The Blue Tigers are led in scoring by Jennifer Rosado averaging 13.4 points per contest while Angela Randall leads the team in rebounds and assists.
Mosley completes outstanding February: The month ofFebruary was good to senior forward Dominique Mosley who completed a great month on Thrsday as she averaged 16.6 points per game and averaging 7.9 boards per contest in the month's seven games. She registered her sixth double-double of the season last Saturday against Pittsburg State scoring 21 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. On the season, Mosley is leading the team in points, rebounds and blocks averaging 15.4, 7.2 and 0.8 blocks. In MIAA contests, she is averaging 14.0 ppg. and 6.7 rpg.
Lions are tough when: The Lions have found much success this year when they have an advantage in rebounding (16-4), outshoot opponents in field goal percentage (15-3), have more assists (16-2) and have more steals (15-2), lead at halftime (11-4), make more free throws (12-3), have fewer turnovers (12-2) and score 80+ points (8-0).
Lions fall out of regional rankings: Southern was ranked ninth in the first Central Regional Poll released last Wednesday (Feb. 19), but fell out in the most recent rankings that came out on Wednesday. MIAA members Emporia State checked in first, followed by fellow conference members Central Missouri in third, Pittsburg State in fifth and Fort Hays State in 10th. With the top eight teams qualifying for the NCAA Tournament, the next poll will be released next Wednesday (Mar. 5).
Lions clinch first round bye and bid to Kansas City: With the Lions win over Lindenwood on Thursday, the Lions clinched a berth in Kansas City as one of the top four teams in the MIAA and will await a quarterfinal matchup on Thursday, March 6 at Municipal Auditorium.
MIAA Team Rankings: The Lions rank 1st in the MIAA in rebounding defense (32.5 rpg.), 2nd in FG percentage (.457) & free-throw percentage (.747), 4th in 3-point FG perc. (.330), assists (15.0), & steals (8.8 spg), 5th in scoring offense (72.7), reb. margin (+3.8), scoring margin (+7.0) and blocks (3.2).
MIAA Individual Rankings: Shonte Clay is 4th in the MIAA in FG percentage as she is shooting 54.4% from the field hitting 111-204. Sharese Jones is 5th at 54.2% (103-190). Dominique Mosley ranks 8th hitting 50.2% (144-287).
Samantha Soyez is 5th in the MIAA in assists averaging 3.8 apg as she has dished 91 helpers in 24 games. Alexis Fitzpatrick is 6th averaging 3.7 assists per game.
Jones ranks 3rd in the MIAA in FT percentage at 80.0% (128-160). Mosley is 5th at 77.0% (97-126). Nicole Hartzog is 7th at 75.5% (71-94).
Fitzpartick leads the MIAA in steals averaging 2.4 swipes per game. She is 6th in the MIAA in minutes played averging 31.8 mpg. Hartzog is 2nd in steals with 2.0 spg.
Mosley ranks 6th in the MIAA in scoring averaging 15.4 ppg. Jones is 11th at 13.8 ppg. Clay is 23rd with 11.3 ppg. Hartzog is 26th at 10.7 ppg.
Mosley is 11th in boards grabbing 7.2 rpg. Jones is 16th with 6.5 rpg.
National Rankings: The Lions rank 20th in the nation in field goal percentage shooting 45.7% from the field. They check in 46th in free throw percentage hitting 74.6% from the line, while they are 54th in assists per game with 15.2, 63rd in scoring margin (+6.9) and 64th in rebounding margin (+3.7). Individually, Fitzpatrick ranks 53rd in steals (2.38) and Mosley is 56th (50.5) in the country in field goal percentage. Fitzpatrick ranks 78th in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.60).