Falcon women ready to open MAC play (01-03-14) PDF Print E-mail
Written by By JACK CARLE, Sentinel Sports Editor   
Thursday, 02 January 2014 23:18
The non-conference schedule is over, and the new season begins Saturday.
The Bowling Green State University women’s basketball team went 10-2 in the non-conference, but the Mid-American Conference schedule starts Saturday with a home game against Buffalo. Tipoff is at 2 p.m.
‘‘This is when it really counts. This is where we really need to show who we are; keep up the intensity, get down on defense, and start from there,’’ said BG redshirt sophomore Erica Donovan, who leads the team in scoring, averaging 12.6 points per game.
‘‘My dream has always been to get to the NCAA tournament, and I feel we could do that together,’’ Donovan continued. ‘‘We could do that, but not with just one individual person, we can do that as a whole. We’re there, and we have a chance.’’
Jennifer Roos, BG’s second-year head coach pointed out during a team meeting on Wednesday that the team needs to focus on the approximately 50 practices and hopefully 22 or more games remaining, and put the non-conference behind them.
PLAYERS: The Falcons have played the majority of the season with nine players.
Katrina Salinas is out for the season with a knee injury while freshmen Lean Bolton and Kennedy Kirkpatrick have played a total of 22 minutes due to injuries.
‘You can’t let that effect you,’’ Donovan said about the short bench. ‘‘If you want to win, if you want to compete, you have to give it all you have. You just have to take that heart and that pride and compete no matter how many minutes you play, because each minute counts.’’
Donovan, Alexis Rogers, Jill Stein, Jillian Halfhill and Miriam Justinger have been BG’s starting lineup for the first 12 games of the season.
The Falcons have been getting good play off the bench from juniors Deborah Hoekstra and Jasmine Matthews.
Both can shoot the 3-pointer and take the ball to the basket.
‘‘Last year we battled a lot of opponents who double-teamed Alexis Rogers inside, or double-teamed other posts inside,’’ Roos said. ‘‘It was because we didn’t have three kids on the perimeter or four kids on the perimeter that could keep you honest at the arc.’’
That has changed as BG is averaging just over seven made threes per game this season.
Hoekstra is 17-of-36 and Matthews is 12-of-37 from the arc, while Donovan is 12-of-25.
BG’s first seven are averaging double-digit minutes per game while freshmen Rachel Konieczki and Abby Siefker, are averaging 9.8 and 9.7 minutes per game, respectively.
Konieczki with 117 minutes and Siefker with 116 minutes have already seen more playing time in their first season than current senior starters Halfhill and Stein did as freshmen.
‘‘They are seeing quality minutes, and they are seeing minutes that are consecutive minutes longer than media timeout to media timeout, and that has been beneficial,’’ Roos said about Konieczki and Siefker.
SMART: Unselfish and smart.
Those are the words Roos likes to use when she describes her current team.
‘‘We’re just a smart basketball team right now. We are doing a good job of making, and finding the extra pass. Those two go with being unselfish,’’ Roos said.
NUMBERS: The Falcons are averaging 69.9 points per game, which is 124th out of the 349 Division I women’s teams.
Defensively Bowling Green is allowing 56.8 points per game, which is 22nd in the nation.
BG’s 10-2 record is 34th in the country.
Stein is averaging 9.0 rebounds per game, 92nd in the nation.
Another important stat for Roos is having her team make more free throws than the opposition attempts. Through 12 games, BG has made 182 free throws and the opponents have attempted 187.
‘‘Number-wise we are pleased,’’ Roos said.
ADD TWO: The MAC has added two games to the conference schedule this season.
The Falcons face everyone in the East home and away. Against the West, BG faces Central Michigan and Eastern Michigan twice and everyone else once.
‘‘I really don’t like it at all. I am a big proponent of 16 (games),’’ Roos said about the new schedule. ‘‘You run into a couple of issues when now not everybody plays the same opponents. We don’t go East, West, East, like we’ve done before. Now if’s a computer-generated crap shoot on who those two extra games are with. If we don’t have those two extra conference games, maybe we have two additional home games.
‘‘I would like to go back to 16.’’
Last Updated on Friday, 03 January 2014 09:50

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