QUICK HITS FROM THE THIS WEEK:
• The CAA looks to improve on it 23-10 record while the CAA team have 21 games schedule for the upcoming week.
• Hofstra, Delaware, and Old Dominion will participate in tournaments this week.
• Old Dominion’s contest against Connecticut at the Paradise Jam on Friday, Nov. 23 will be broadcast on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic at 11 p.m. This is the first CAA contest of the season to be televised.
QUICK HITS FROM LAST WEEK:
• The CAA improved to 23-10 after James Madison went 3-0 on the week, Old Dominion and VCU each picked up a pair of victories and Drexel, George Mason, Georgia State, UNC Wilmington, Northeastern and Towson collected a win this week.
• Half of the CAA squads have started the new season with a perfect record including, James Madison, UNC Wilmington, Old Dominion, Towson, VCU and William & Mary.
CO-PLAYERS OF THE WEEK:
Gabriela Marginean • Drexel
Mt. de Chantal Academy (W.Va.)/Cluj-Napoca, Romania, So., Forward
Drexel sophomore forward Gabriela Marginean received CAA Player of the Week honors after averaging 23 points per game and posted a pair of double-doubles on the week for the Dragons. The sophomore captured her 10th career double-double with her 18-point, 10-rebound performance at Saint Joseph’s on Wednesday. She followed those efforts with a 28-point, 13-rebound showing in Drexel’s home victory over La Salle. Marginean added five assists and four steals on the week.
Kendra Walton • Northeastern
East Hartford, Conn./Wilbur L. Cross, So., Forward
Northeastern sophomore forward Kendra Walton is named CAA Player of the Week honors after scoring a career high 19 points in the Huskies win over UMass on Saturday. She registered the team’s only double-double with the addition of a game-high 12 rebounds. The sophomore forward shot over 85 percent from the field (6-of-7), 80 percent from beyond the arc (4-for-5) and was perfect from the line (3-for-3). Walton also contributed three steals and one assist in the victory.
ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
Dawn Evans • James Madison
Clarksville, Tenn./Northeast, Fr., Guard
James Madison freshman guard Dawn Evans earned CAA Rookie of the Week for the second conseutive week after assisting the Dukes to a trio of victories last week. The rookie averaged nearly 10 points and five assists an outing. Evans recorded a career-high six rebounds in the game against UMBC and registered a career-high seven assists in the win over Wake Forest. The Clarksville, Tenn. native also contributed three steals on the week.
STARTING THE 2007-08 SEASON: The CAA have posted a 5-3 mark against teams which made an appearance in the 2007 NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship. In the opening week, Delaware defeated Delaware State, James Madison was victorious over Harvard, Northeastern collected a win over Coppin State, and Old Dominion defeated Middle Tennessee. Three wins came on CAA home courts, while Northeastern earned a victory over CSU on a neutral floor. George Mason fell to #9/10 Georgia in Athens, Ga. The Dukes posted a victory over UMBC, while Delaware fell to both #3 Maryland and TCU in the Preseason WNIT.
RETURNING TALENT: Seven of the 15 members from last year’s All-CAA teams will return for the 2007-08 season. Three of the five first-team honorees are back: Old Dominion’s T.J. Jordan, William & Mary’s Kyra Kaylor and James Madison’s Tamera Young.
TOP STATISTICAL LEADERS RETURN: The CAA should be loaded once again as the conference welcomes back 13 of its top 20 scorers from last season. Also back are 12 of the CAA’s top 20 in rebounding and 10 of the top 15 in assists and steals.
ODU CAPTURES 16TH STRAIGHT CAA TITLE: Old Dominion edged James Madison 78-70 in another thrilling title game to capture its NCAA record 16th consecutive CAA championship. The Lady Monarchs have never lost a CAA Tournament game since joining the league back in 1991-92. With the win, ODU advanced to its 24th NCAA Tournament, which ranks as the third-most appearances in Division I behind only Tennessee and Louisiana Tech. The Lady Monarchs have won 20 or more games during all 16 seasons as a CAA member.
CAA MAKING HISTORY: For the first time in CAA history, three women’s basketball teams advanced to the 2007 NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament. Old Dominion, which earned the CAA’s automatic bid, was joined by James Madison and Delaware in the field of 64. Hofstra represented the CAA in the Women’s National Invitation Tournament, which marked the second straight season the CAA had four women’s basketball teams advance to postseason play. The Lady Monarchs made their 16th straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament and 24th overall. James Madison made its seventh NCAA appearance, but first since 1996--the last time the CAA had more than one team in the NCAA Women’s Tournament. Delaware made its second trip to the “Big Dance” which was its first since winning the America East automatic bid in 2002. Hofstra made its second straight appearance in the WNIT. Hofstra advanced to the quarterfinals of the WNIT with wins over Seton Hall and South Carolina. The Pride fell to Western Kentucky, 72-54, in the quarterfinals.
HOME SWEET HOME: James Madison continued its success at home as the Dukes defeated Wake Forest on Sunday. The Dukes own the longest current winning streak on their home court with 28 victories dating back to the 2005-06 season. JMU will next test their strength at home again on Nov. 27 when they host #14/12 George Washington.
TV EXPOSURE: CAA women’s basketball increased its television exposure with 21 games on the air this season. All 12 teams will make least one television appearance. Old Dominion will open the women’s basketball TV schedule when they face Connecticut during the Paradise Jam Tournament on Friday, Nov. 23. The contest will be broadcast on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic at 11 p.m.
2007-08 DEAL WITH THE AMERICA CHANNEL: Colonial Athletic Association Commissioner Tom Yeager announced that the league has entered into an agreement with The America Channel, which will provide live television coverage of a minimum of 18 women’s basketball games and several other CAA Championships beginning 2008 academic year. The America Channel® is a new programming network that will explore and celebrate our communities, campuses, real heroes, and ordinary people who accomplish the extraordinary. The America Channel’s SportsLife ™ initiative merges life and sport – combining broadcast of over 200 NCAA sports games and matches, with real-life drama about the aspirations, achievements, challenges, adventures, community service, and lifestyles of students and student athletes from numerous NCAA conferences.
MAJORITY OF STARTERS RETURN: CAA teams return 55% (33-of-60) of their starting line-ups from a season ago. Drexel, George Mason, Northeastern, Towson and William & Mary only lost one starter from the 2006-07 season. UNC Wilmington and VCU, which both had all five starters back a year ago, return three starters this season.
TOP 10 IN THE NATION: Old Dominion’s T.J. Jordan averaged 3.1 three-point field goals per game which ranked her fourth nationally at the completion of the 2006-07 season. Georgia State’s Brittany Hollins finished the season ranked fifth in steals, averaging 3.3 per outing.
DELAWARE (1-2, 0-0 CAA)
The Blue Hens lost to a pair of perennial powers this week. Delaware suffered their worst loss in a decade as they fell to #3 Maryland, 91-43, in the second round of the Preseason Women’s National Invitation Tournament on Tuesday. The Blue Hens then fell to TCU in their final contest of the Preseason WNIT on Friday, 66-36. Against Maryland, Delaware was led by freshman guard Vanessa Kabongo as she posted a team-high 11 points. Junior guard Jamie Mundy added nine points and senior forward Courtney Irving grabbed a team-high six rebounds. On Friday, Mundy led the Blue Hens with nine points and seven rebounds, while Sha’Ron Harrison added seven points, four rebounds, and three steals, and freshman Eva Riddick pulled down seven rebounds. The Hens shot just 11-of-44 from the field (5-of-21 in the opening half) and were 0-of-7 from beyond the three-point line, failing to hit a trey for the first time in 46 games. The Blue Hens were without top returnee Kyle DeHaven, who led the team with 24 points in the season opener, this week due to an broken bone in her shooting hand. The Blue Hens will return home to host Boston College Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Bob Carpenter Center. Delaware will completed the week as they participate in the Panera Bread Challenge at Tennessee Chattanooga. The Blue Hens are scheduled to face Louisville on Friday and either UTC or Murray State on Saturday.
DREXEL (1-2, 0-0 CAA)
Drexel fell to 0-2 on the season as they dropped a 49-40 decision to St. Joseph’s on Wednesday. The Dragons opened their season at home with a 57-50 victory at the Daskalakis Athletic Center on Saturday afternoon. Against the Hawks, sophomore Gabriela Marginean led the Dragons with an 18-point, 11-rebound double-double performance. Drexel shot just 27 percent on the road in a game that saw 40 turnovers between the two teams. After the Dragons rebounded from a 26-17 halftime deficit, Drexel fell to the Hawks as SJU’s Jenna Loschiavo connected on three straight three-pointers. Marginean compiled her second consecutive double-double with 28 points and 13 rebounds in a 57-50 Drexel victory over La Salle on Saturday. Senior guard Andrea Peterson turned in one of her finest performances as a Dragon as she drilled two key three-pointers during a span of just over 15 minutes that Drexel held La Salle without a field goal. Peterson finished the game with 13 points to go with four boards and three steals. The victory tied head coach Denise Dillon for the second most coaching wins at Drexel. She has 55 coaching victories and is tied with Kevin Murphy, who was 55-87 in five seasons from 1995-2000. Lil Haas holds Drexel’s all-time record for victories with 144 in her 10-year Division I coach career with the Dragons. Drexel will return to the road this week as they visit Army on Tuesday and Penn State on Sunday.
GEORGE MASON (1-2, 0-0 CAA)
George Mason was unable to overcome a strong Seton Hall offensive effort as the Patriots dropped a 78-41 decision to the Pirates, on Friday evening in the opening game of the 2007 Seton Hall Basketball Classic. The Patriots earned their first victory of the new season on Saturday with a 66-65 win over Toledo at the USH Classic. On Friday, Mason’s offense was led by senior Lateisha Wade, who scored nine points playing in her home state of New Jersey for the first time as a Patriot. Classmate Moni Akintunde chipped in eight, while freshman Brittany Eley added six points. Against Toledo, junior Jessica Smith drained a 14-foot jumpshot with 0.8 seconds remaining on the clock to seal the team’s first victory of the season. Wade poured in a career-best 26 points. Wade was joined in double figures by senior Casey Quigley and sophomore Rashauna Hobbs, who chipped in 11 and 10 points, respectively. Off the glass, Quigley led the Patriots with eight rebounds, as well as a team-high three steals. The Patriots make there home regular season debut UMBC on Wednesday before entertaining Longwood at home on Friday.
GEORGIA STATE (1-2, 0-0 CAA)
The Panthers split on the weekend, while collecting their first victory of the new season on Friday evening with a 63-59 win over Gardner-Webb. On Sunday, the Panthers fell to Davidson 59-42 in the championship game of the Carolina First Classic hosted by UNC Asheville. In the opening game on Friday, Georgia State got 18 points, seven assists and five steals from junior guard Brittany Hollins and the Panthers will advance to the Saturday championship game of the Carolina First Classic against Davidson. GSU also got a double-double of 14 points and 10 rebounds from sophomore forward Shay Rawls. Hollins was a solid 7-of-11 from the field and 2-of-3 outside the three-point arc, as well as 2-for-2 at the line. On Saturday, Hollins led State with 13 points, six rebounds and two assists. Brittany Hudson added eight points and Monica Mann seven points. Hollins moved up to 185 steals for her career, needing two more to inch ahead to sixth place in school history and she needs only 62 more in her career for the school record. The young Panthers have 12 of 13 players 20 years and younger and started two juniors and three sophomores in the Carolina First Classic. The Panthers will play their third game in four days when they meet #7/6 North Carolina on Monday evening. Georgia State will host Jacksonville State on Saturday.
HOFSTRA (1-1, 0-0 CAA)
Hofstra dropped its first outing of the new season at Rider on Thursday night, 67-54, and fell to 1-1. Hofstra used its second different starting line-up in as many contests as junior forward Kristina Campbell replaced junior center Jess Fuller in the starting lineup. The Pride didn’t have any players in double-figures, but four players did post eight points a piece, including senior Linn Quamme, juniors Kristina Campbell and Jess Fuller and freshman Candice Bellocchio. Quamme also grabbed a team-high six rebounds while Campbell and Fuller had five caroms. The Pride will return to the court next week when they take part in the Dead River Classic hosted by the University of Maine. Hofstra will face Quinnipiac on Friday, Nov. 23 before playing either Harvard or Maine on Saturday. This will be the first of two inseason tournaments that Hofstra will take part in and the Pride will look for its first tournament title since the 2001-02 SJU Thanksgiving Classic.
JAMES MADISON (4-0, 0-0 CAA)
James Madison presented sixth-year head coach Kenny Brooks with his 100th career victory as the Dukes defeated Bucknell, 73-53, Tuesday evening at the Sojka Pavilion. JMU scored the last 13 points of the first half to pull away to a 42-33 halftime lead and Bucknell never got closer than 14 points the remainder of the contest. The Dukes’ senior guard Tamera Young finished with game highs of 23 points and 13 rebounds. Junior forward Kisha Stokes recorded a double-double for the second consecutive game as she contributed a career-high 13 points and 12 rebounds. Redshirt senior forward Jennifer Brown added 10 points, nine rebounds and a career-high six steals, and redshirt junior forward Nina Uqdah came off the bench to score a personal-best 10 points. On Friday, JMU defeated UMBC, 74-61. Stokes scored a career-high 16 points and three other Dukes added 13 points apiece in the win. Young was the game’s top rebounder with 11 and scored 13 points. Also with 13 points were freshman center Lauren Jimenez and freshman guard Dawn Evans. Evans and Young tied for game honors with five assists. The Dukes closed out the week with a 64-53 home victory over Wake Forest on Sunday evening. With the win, JMU extended its home winning streak to 28 games--the longest current home win streak in NCAA Division I. Brown led the Dukes with a JMU career-high 16 points against the Demon Deacons. This was the first time in her career that Brown led the Dukes in scoring. Her overall career-high points was 22 during her sophomore season at Pittsburgh. Also in double figures for the Dukes were Young with 14 and Evans, who added 10 points and had a team-high seven assists. Young passed 1,500 career points in the game and moved into fourth place on JMU’s all-time scoring list with 1,508 points. The 4-0 start is JMU’s best under Brooks and the Dukes’ first 4-0 start since the 1996-97 team under Sheila Moorman. Over the last 36 seasons only four other Dukes’ squads have had 4-0 starts. After playing its first four games in a nine-day span, James Madison has a nine-day break before the Dukes host Top-25 team George Washington on Nov. 27.
UNC WILMINGTON (2-0, 0-0 CAA)
The UNC Wilmington improved to 2-0 with a 59-56 victory over Campbell on Wednesday evening. Junior Sahsha Taylor and freshman Brittany Blackwell tallied 14 points apiece to lead the Seahawks. Junior Shade Smith chipped in nine points, all from the free-throw line, while dishing out a game-high six assists. Sophomore Candace Walker matched her career high with 11 rebounds and added eight points. The Seahawks return to action this week with a pair of contests against Southern Conference members as they look to improve to 4-0 for just the second time in the Ann Hancock era. UNC Wilmington will visit College of Charleston on Monday evening before hosting Elon on Saturday.
NORTHEASTERN (2-1, 0-0 CAA)
The Huskies handed UMass its first loss of the season, 86-81, on Saturday. Northeastern earned its first victory at home early in the new season. Junior guard Ashlee Feldman led a balanced Northeastern offense with 21 points, and four other Huskies scored in double figures, including a career high 19 for Kendra Walton, who also posted a double-double with 12 rebounds. Senior guard Shaleyse Smallwood scored 18 points for the Huskies and also had a game high eight assists. Senior guard Lucia Pablos had 15 points and freshman guard Jasmine Crew contributed 12. Northeastern will play just one contest this week as they take on Boston University at Case Gymnasium on Monday evening.
OLD DOMINION (3-0, 0-0 CAA)
Old Dominion improved to 3-0 with a 88-66 road victory over East Carolina on Tuesday evening and an 80-59 home victory over Charlotte on Saturday. The Lady Monarchs move to 3-0 on the season, the first time since the 1998-99 season Old Dominion has won three straight games to open a season. On Tuesday, sophomore forward Jessica Canady set another career mark by coming off the bench for 18 points. The sophomore led three other Lady Monarchs to double-digit scoring, Jasmine Parker (14), Shahida Williams (11) and TJ Jordan (10). Junior guard Jazzmin Walters dished out a career-high 12 assists, while committing no turnovers. Against the 49ers, Jordan managed to find more placed to put her name in the ODU record books. With a game-high 28 points, Jordan broke the ODU record for most points scored by a Lady Monarch at the Ted Constant Convocation Center. The previous record of 27 points was held by Max Nhassengo against Hofstra on Feb. 24, 2004. Additionally with her six three-pointers made, she becomes the ODU recorder holder for three-pointers made in a career with 251 to date, surpassing Aubrey Eblin’s (1995-1999) former mark of 250. Jordan was the lone Lady Monarch in double figures. Senior Megan Pym and Walters posted nine points with Pym hauling in eight rebounds. Canady added in eight. The Lady Monarchs heads to play in the Paradise Jam this week. ODU will be a part of a three-game tournament in St. Thomas over Thanksgiving. Play opens up against Connecticut on Friday, Nov. 23. It will be the first meeting between the Lady Monarchs and the Huskies since the 2002 Elite Eight match-up. On Saturday, Nov. 24, ODU will square off against Stanford, the first time these two teams have faced each other since the thrilling overtime national semifinal game in 1997. One more game will await the Lady Monarchs in St. Thomas against either Duke, Purdue or Temple on Sunday, Nov. 25.
TOWSON (2-0, 0-0 CAA)
The Tigers earned a 76-55 road victory over Norfolk State on Friday evening. Sophomore forward Kandace Davis scored a season-high 12 points and added nine rebounds as the Tigers won their sixth straight non-conference game. Davis made five of ten field goal attempts and both of her free throw attempts as the Tigers jumped out to a 33-22 halftime lead and cruised to the victory with a strong second half effort. Making the first start of her college career, freshman guard Simona Petronyte added ten points by making three of five shots from the floor. She was also two-for-four from three-point range. Freshman forward Dovile Miliauskaite scored a season-high ten points while recording four rebounds. Sophomore guard Alexis Abraham scored nine points in the first start of her college career. Towson will prepare to face Duquesne on the road on Nov. 25.
VCU (3-0, 0-0 CAA)
Virginia Commonwealth University earned its second and third straight wins of the season as they defeated American, 71-38, on Tuesday and collected a 54-47 victory at St. Joseph’s on Sunday. The Rams are now unbeaten in their last 15 contests (dating back to the 2004-05 season) in the month of November. Against the Eagles, three Rams scored in double figures, led by Kita Waller’s 23 points. Waller also finished with six rebounds. Senior forward Krystal Vaughn closed with 15 point and a game-high seven rebounds and La’Tavia Rorie posted 13 points and six rebounds. Senior guard LaKea Jones dished out a team-high six assists in the victory. On Sunday, Vaughn and Hollingsworth led the way offensively as Hollingsworth recorded her 27th career double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds, while Vaughn finished with 17 points and nine rebounds in the victory. Hollingsworth is now just one double-double behind Kristine Austgulen for second place all-time and just three behind all-time school leader Beth Mollerup, who finished her stellar career with 30. The Rams are back in action on Sunday, Nov. 25 as they host the Mountaineers of Appalachian State.
WILLIAM & MARY (2-0, 0-0 CAA)
The Tribe was idle this past week as they will prepare to host in-state rival Richmond on Nov. 20. William & Mary are currently led by senior guard/forward Devin James who is averaging 17 points per game after two contests and senior forward Kyra Kaylor who has posted 12.5 points per game. Both James and Kaylor also lead the team averaging seven rebounds per outing. James has dished out a team-high 13 assists and added four steals to junior guard Courtney Protell’s team-high five.