Women's Basketball Takes on Familiar Face at Youngstown State
By Rachel Buck (@GBRachel)
GREEN BAY, Wis. (GreenBayPhoenix.com) – The Green Bay women’s basketball team faces its first road test of the Horizon League season as it travels to Youngstown State on Thursday evening.
It will be the first conference road game for the Phoenix this season and first of two contests in Ohio as Green Bay will also take on Cleveland State on Saturday. Thursday’s contest at Youngstown State also pits the Phoenix against former associate head coach.
Fans can listen live to the game on Green Bay's new radio partner, WNFL 1440 AM. The live audio with Bruce VandenPlas on the call will also be available for free via GreenBayPhoenix.com or on the Green Bay Phoenix App on IOS and Android devices.
Thursday’s contest marks the 31st all-time meeting between the two teams, with the Phoenix leading the all-time series 29-1. Green Bay has won the last 16 meetings, dating back to its only loss in the series on February 19, 2005 (56-60) at home.
Green Bay currently stands 8-6 overall and 1-1 in the Horizon League. Last week the Phoenix opened conference action with a 66-50 win over UIC before dropping a 75-64 decision to Milwaukee. Sophomore Kaili Lukan (Barrie, Ontario) paced the Phoenix in both contests, posting back-to-back 20+ point performances with 22 against UIC and a career-high 25 versus Milwaukee. She finished the two games averaging 23.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 36.0 minutes while shooting 58.1 percent (18-31) from the field.
This season Breannah Ranger (Skokie, Ill.) leads rebounding (7.6 RPG), junior Megan Lukan (Barrie, Ontario) leads assists (4.4 APG) and Megan Lukan and Tesha Buck (Red Wing, Minn.) are tied for the team lead in steals (1.9 SPG). Buck also leads the conference with a 2.4 assist/turnover ratio.leads the team in scoring (12.3 PPG), while senior
Youngstown State has opened strong in conference play, owning a 2-0 mark after posting wins at Valparaiso (62-49) and UIC (69-58) last weekend. Overall the Penguins are 6-9 and 2-1 in the month of January. Junior Heidi Schegel is the only Youngstown player in double-digit scoring, leading the team and standing third in the conference with 20.2 points/game. She also leads the team with 7.5 rebounds/game and 1.2 steals/game. Senior Karen Flagg has a team best 1.4 blocks/game while classmate Liz Hornberger has a team leading 3.4 assists/game.
1. Cool Hand Lukan: Coming back from an ACL injury that finished her season early last year, sophomore Kaili Lukan has been making the most of her time on the court this season. Leading the team in scoring for the majority of the year, she has been the top Phoenix scorer in six contests while posting double-digit efforts in 10 games, including the last four. Earlier this season against South Dakota State (12/7), she posted her first career double-double and last week she put together back-to-back 20+ point performances against UIC (22) and Milwaukee (25).
2. You Look Familiar: Green Bay will see a familiar face in its game against Youngstown State on Thursday. Head coach Kevin Borseth last year in Green Bay. The Borseth and Barnes ties go back even further, as Barnes took over the reins at Michigan Tech in 2003 after Borseth’s departure, and he also served as an assistant under Borseth at the University of Michigan during the 2011-12 season., in his first season at YSU, served as the associate head coach for
3. Feed it in: Green Bay has been able to capitalize on offensive production in the paint this season, receiving 48.0 percent (442-921) of its total points from the lane while outscoring its opponents in the category by a +190 point margin (442-252). Green Bay has received more paint points than its opposition in all but one game this season, a loss to South Dakota State (12/7). Senior Breannah Ranger leads all Phoenix with 116 points in the paint.
4. Running Parallels: It has been an up-and-down season for the Phoenix, paralleling the 2003-04 season in Green Bay on several levels. Both seasons saw the Phoenix drop three consecutive home and four overall contests in the month of December, while losing its second Horizon League contest of the season. Even with the adversity there is an upside: the 2003-04 squad finished 23-8 overall and 13-3 in the Horizon League, capturing the conference tournament title to advance to the NCAA Tournament.
5. Home (Not So) Sweet Home: With six losses on the schedule this season, Green Bay is in unfamiliar territory with four of those coming at the Kress Center. Before this year the Phoenix had an overall record of 95-6 at the Kress Center (six seasons) and had never lost more than two games on its home court in a single season. It has been nearly two decades since the Phoenix lost more than four games at home in a year, last occurring during the 1992-93 campaign when it was 10-6.
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