Women's Basketball Tournament Preview: Quarterfinals vs Valparaiso
CATCH THE ACTION: Saturday, March 4 - 10:30 a.m. CT // Detroit, Mich. (Joe Louis Arena)
Matchup: No. 1 Green Bay Phoenix (24-5, 15-3 HL) vs No. 9 Valparaiso Crusaders (10-20, 4-14)
Green Bay Basketball Live Blog: Follow The Phoenix
Where to Watch: TV - NA Online - ESPN3
Where to Follow: Live Stats
Where to Listen: WNFL 101.9 FM, 1440 AM
Series Record: Green Bay leads, 37-4
For Live in-game updates, follow: @gbphoenixwbb
It is no secret that Mehryn Kraker has been one of the best to ever wear a Phoenix jersey. The Wisconsin native recently added another bullet-point to an already remarkable career resume, becoming the first player to receive the league’s most prestigious award since Julie Wojta in the 2011-12 season. Kraker is the ninth player is program history to earn Horizon League Player of the Year. She shattered the all-time three-point record this season, becoming the only player in the 44-year history of the program to surpass 200 three-pointers made. Kraker has also been climbing the all-time scoring ladder all season, currently ranking fifth with 1,612 career points. She enters the Horizon League Tournament having scored 522 points this season, which ranks eighth on Green Bay’s single-season scoring list. The guard also finished in the top five in the league in points-per-game (2nd), field-goal percentage (3rd), three-pointers made (T-2nd), as well as top 10 in assists (8th) and three-point field-goal percentage (7th).
WINNING....SINCE THE BEGINNING
The Green Bay women’s basketball team is one of three Division I women’s basketball programs that has had a winning record every year since the NCAA took over administration of women’s college athletics in the fall of 1981. Essentially, the Phoenix has never had a losing record in the NCAA era. The two teams that join it are Tennessee and Georgia, who finished their regular seasons at 19-10 and 15-14, respectively.
ABUNDANCE OF ACCOLADES
After not placing a member of the squad on the Horizon League’s First Team since Adrian Ritchie in 2012-13, Kraker collected Player of the Year honors this season. Jessica Lindstrom was named to the All-Defensive Team for the second-straight season and added a second team honor to her list of accolades after leading the team in rebounding with 9.6 RPG and second in scoring with 12.7 PPG. Jen Wellnitz received the first postseason honor of her career, earning a spot on the All-Defensive team after our team in steals with 43 during league play to finish second in the HL with 2.5 per game. Hibner provided the Phoenix with support off the bench in her first year with the team, finishing fifth on the team in scoring with a 4.7 PPG average. She was also one of the more reliable players on the boards, finishing second on the team with 3.4 RPG. Hibner is the first player from Green Bay to make an appearance on the league’s all-freshman team since Mehryn Kraker and Tesha Buck accomplished the same feat in 2013-14.
KEEPING IT 100
Seniors Mehryn Kraker, Sam Terry and Lexi Weitzer claimed the 100th win of their careers in their final home game against UIC on February 20th. The most wins by a class in Green Bay’s history is 122 and it was done by two separate classes, as Julie Wojta and Hannah Quilling set the record from 2008-12 and Adrian Ritchie, Lydia Bauer, Sarah Eichler and Stephanie Sension matched the record from 2009-13.
Green Bay has already secured its 40th-consecutive winning season and trails only Tennessee (43) for the longest active streak in the nation. Green Bay’s streak includes 18-straight conference titles and 16 NCAA Tournament appearances. After the victory over Cleveland State on Feb. 10, the Phoenix also secured 18 consecutive 20-plus win seasons dating back to 1999-00.
The Phoenix clinched its 19th-consecutive regular season conference championship this season, a streak that dates back to the 1998-99 season. Green Bay’s current consecutive title run is the longest active conference championship streak in the nation. To really put things in perspective, the last time that Green Bay lost a regular-season conference championship, freshman Karly Murphy hadn't been born.
Allie LeClaire is closing in on the 1,000-point marking entering the quarterfinal matchup with 973 career points. There are currently 34 members that have achieved the milestone while playing for the Phoenix, 22 of which did so in the DI-era of Green Bay basketball.
The combination of Mehryn Kraker, Jessica Lindstrom and Allie LeClaire has accounted for over 60% of the Phoenix scoring this season. In addition, one of the three has led Green Bay in scoring in 28 of the 29 games this year. Kraker leads the team with 18.0 PPG followed closely by Jessica Lindstrom and Allie LeClaire with 12.7 PPG and 11.0 PPG, respectively.
LOCKING IT DOWN
Despite playing what is considered one of the more challenging non-conference schedules in the nation, Green Bay has been able to lock its opponents down defensively. As of March 4, the Phoenix ranked second in the nation in scoring defense, allowing a lowly 50.3 points per game. The top statistical defense in the country is owned by Campbell, who allows only 47.8 points per game.
BORSETH INKS TWO-YEAR EXTENSION
Green Bay and head women’s basketball coach Kevin Borseth have agreed to a contract extension through the 2020-21 season, Director of Athletics Mary Ellen Gillespie announced on Friday, October 14. Borseth, who recently led the Phoenix to its 18th-consecutive Horizon League title and 16th NCAA Tournament appearance, will be entering his 14th season overall at Green Bay and owns a winning percentage of .792 with the Phoenix.
WELCOME HOME, HANNAH
Head coach Kevin Borseth recently announced the hiring of former Phoenix standout Hannah Quilling-Iverson as the Director of Player Development for the Green Bay women’s basketball program. Quilling-Iverson’s role with the team will pertain to player management, program operations and assisting in the set up of on-campus recruiting and coordinating official and unofficial visits for potential recruits.
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