No. 1 Ashland Women To Travel To Play Storm On Thursday

No. 1 Ashland Women To Travel To Play Storm On Thursday

LINK TO PDF VERSION OF GAME NOTES

Opening Tip

The No. 1-ranked Ashland University women's basketball team will go back on the road for the first time since Dec. 30 when it continues Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play with one game this week.

Ashland's lone game in the third week of January is on Jan. 19 at 5:30 p.m. at Lake Erie. The Eagles are 18-0 overall, 10-0 in the GLIAC, and lead the GLIAC South Division by four games over second-place Ohio Dominican and five games over the third-place Storm (7-9, 5-5).

The Eagles are coming off a week in which they opened South play with home wins over both the Panthers (101-62) and Hillsdale (85-66).

Ashland returns to the road having won 20 of its last 21 games away from Kates Gymnasium, as well as 35 of its last 36 GLIAC regular-season games overall.

 

Eagles On The Air

- This week's game will be aired live on WNCO-AM 1340, with Marty Bannister on the call.

- All GLIAC home regular-season games will be aired on tape delay on SportsTime Ohio.

- Head coach Robyn Fralick appears on "The Early Bird's Word" on WRDL every Friday at 8:30 a.m., and on "Inside The Huddle With Noah Cloonan" every Wednesday during the season.

 

Eagles Top WBCA Division II Poll For Fifth Straight Time

Ashland University has earned the No. 1 spot in the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) NCAA Division II Top 25 Coaches' Poll for the fifth consecutive time, the latest of which was on Tuesday (Jan. 17) afternoon.

The Eagles received 22 of 24 first-place votes. They received 20 first-place votes on Dec. 13, 21 on Dec. 21 and 22 each on Jan. 3 and Jan. 10.

This is the 18th time Ashland has been the No. 1-ranked team in the WBCA poll. The Eagles are 33-1 (.971) all-time when playing as the top team in the country.

Tuesday marks the 61st time Ashland has been in the Top 25 poll, all since the 1995-96 season. It is the 45th time the Eagles have been in the Top 10, and the 37th time they have been in the Top 5. It is the 26th straight poll in which AU has appeared.

Ashland is one of only four undefeated teams in Division II, and is the only GLIAC team in this week's Top 25.

 

Looking Back, Looking Ahead

The Eagles began the GLIAC South section of the 2016-17 regular season with home wins over the Panthers and Chargers.

"Obviously, starting the South, that's a big season for us," Fralick said. "I thought we played very well against Ohio Dominican. Both teams really push, both are up-tempo. It wasn't perfect. There's things that we want to clean up, but we played really hard, and we always say effort trumps a multitude of mistakes. In the Hillsdale game, very different style of game. We just didn't shoot it well, but, other than the first quarter, we defended well. And the start of the fourth quarter was big for us. We found ways to beat two very good teams in different ways.

"You can't teach experience. You say that with players over the course of their careers, and you say that also with game situations. It's one thing to practice it, and it's one thing when the game lights are on."

Since Lake Erie joined the GLIAC in the 2010-11 season, Ashland has won all 12 meetings.

"They're one of the top teams in the South," Fralick said. "Our focus, it's always mixed - it's between ourselves and making sure we are improving at what we do, and it's also on Lake Erie that we're prepared and ready to play."

It is an unusual week for the Eagles, in that there is no Saturday game. The hole in the schedule was created when Malone left the GLIAC to join the Great Midwest Athletic Conference.

 

Snyder Runs '16-17 South Honor Total To Four

It might seem like a broken record, but the sound continues to be sweet for Ashland's women.

For the fourth time this season and the eighth time in her Eagle career, Ashland University junior forward/center Laina Snyder is the GLIAC South Division Player of the Week, as released on Monday (Jan. 16) afternoon.

In home wins over Ohio Dominican and Hillsdale, Snyder averaged 20.5 points, 11.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 3.5 steals and 2.0 blocks per game, while hitting 48.5 percent from the floor and 90.0 percent from the free-throw line. Snyder recorded her 35th career double-double against the Chargers, posting 17 points and pulled down 16 rebounds.

Snyder has 1,304 career points, six away from tying Gweynn Hampel (1,310) for seventh place on Ashland's all-time scoring list. She also has 777 career rebounds and 236 career steals, both good for fifth in AU history.

Snyder is the GLIAC's third-leading scorer (18.0 ppg.), and the circuit's leader in rebounding (9.9 rpg.) and steals (3.5 spg.).

Of the nine 2016-17 GLIAC South Players of the Week, seven have been Eagles – Snyder in Weeks 2, 3, 8 and 9, junior forward Andi Daugherty in Weeks 5 and 7 and freshman guard Jodi Johnson in Week 4.

 

Snyder, Daugherty Climbing AU Points Lists Separately, Together

Snyder and Daugherty each went past the 1,000-career-point mark earlier this season. Daugherty has 1,205 career points, four from passing Darla Plice (1,208) for 13th place and eight from passing Jackie Mason (1,212) for 12th place.

In the 50-season history of Eagle women's basketball, only four sets of teammates whose last season of play were together have each gone past 1,000 points. Snyder and Daugherty are chasing those pairs on a different list:

 

CLASSMATES

LAST SEASON

COMBINED PTS.

Amber Rall/Catherine Portyrata

2006-07

3,210

Kari Daugherty/Daiva Gerbec

2012-13

2,672

Gweynn Hampel/Darla Plice

1977-78

2,518

LAINA SNYDER/ANDI DAUGHERTY

Current

2,509

 

And Then There Were Four

Ashland enters the new week as one of only four undefeated women's basketball teams in NCAA Division II:

 

TEAM

RECORD

NEXT OPPONENT

ASHLAND

18-0

1/19 at Lake Erie (7-9)

Colorado State-Pueblo

17-0

1/17 at Colorado Christian (7-9)

Virginia Union

15-0

1/18 at Bowie State (14-3)

Lincoln Memorial

15-0

1/18 at Tusculum (3-11)

 

While the talk of an undefeated season surrounds the Eagles, internally, the focus remains the same.

"All we talk about is playing hard and playing the right way and playing together," Fralick said. "That's where we keep it."

 

Ashland Sets The Division II Pace

Ashland has been the best Division II women's basketball program in the last five-plus years, a stretch which includes a national championship in 2013 and a national runner-up finish in 2012.

The Eagles lead Division II since the start of the 2011-12 season with 162 victories and an .876 winning percentage (162-23) through Jan. 15.


They've Been Here Before…

This is the second consecutive season the Eagles have started at least 18-0 (they won the first 21 games in 2015-16), and the third time in program history Ashland has won at least the first 18 games of a campaign.

 

TOP ASHLAND UNIVERSITY WOMEN'S BASKETBALL STARTS TO A SEASON

YEAR

MOST WINS WITHOUT A LOSS TO START

2012-13

24-0

2015-16

21-0

2016-17

18-0

 

It's Not Easy To Hit 100

Ashland has scored at least 100 points a school-record five times in 2016-17. That statistic is impressive in and of itself, but a look at the defenses the Eagles have accomplished the feat against makes it all the more impressive:

 

DATE

OPPONENT

PTS.

PPG. ALLOWED BY OPP.

1/12

OHIO DOMINICAN

101

66.9

1/7

NORTHERN MICHIGAN

103

59.2

12/10

WAYNE STATE

103

70.1

12/8

SAGINAW VALLEY STATE

101

64.2

11/12

ALDERSON BROADDUS

128

79.9

 

Seniors Continue To Lead The Way

Ashland continues to get important contributions from its three senior guards - Kelsey Peare, Alex Henning and Rachelle Morrison - both on and off the floor.

"Wins over the course of the season is consistency and competitiveness," said Fralick, "and those three embody that. Those three are incredibly consistent. You know what you're getting out of them every single day on and off the court, and they are very competitive. Those two qualities, our seniors are excellent at, and that has really set the tone for our team.

"Individually, obviously, they bring very different strengths to the team. Kelsey's been a lights-out shooter, very solid, great passer. Alex is an unbelievable ball hawk. She really sets the tone with her defensive pressure. And then Rachelle, her leadership is the most important part of our team, it's the center of our huddle. She's the voice of the team. She brings it every single day. What they bring, they all bring really different strengths, but they're so important. And I'm just so proud of them."

 

The Laundry List Of Winning Streaks

Ashland has added to one program record winning streak, and has tied another.

The entire list of current Eagle winning streaks follows:

 

CATEGORY

CURRENT

AU RECORD

Regular-season home win streak

36 (Dec. 19, 2014-current)

36 (Dec. 19, 2014-current)

GLIAC regular-season home win streak

26 (Jan. 2, 2015-current)

26 (Feb. 3, 2011-Dec. 16, 2013)

26 (Jan. 2, 2015-current)

 
 

Regular-season win streak

24 (Feb. 6, 2016-current)

49 (Nov. 13, 2011-Feb. 9, 2013)

Overall win streak

18 (Nov. 11, 2016-current)

33 (Nov. 13, 2011-March 21, 2012)

GLIAC regular-season win streak

16 (Feb. 6, 2016-current)

38 (Feb. 24, 2011-Feb. 9, 2013)

Home win streak

11 (Nov. 11, 2016-current)

44 (Feb. 3, 2011-Nov. 9, 2013)

Road/neutral-site win streak

9 (Feb. 18, 2016-current)

14 (Nov. 13, 2011-March 21, 2012)

Regular-season road/neutral win streak

9 (Feb. 18, 2016-current)

23 (Nov. 13, 2011-Jan. 24, 2012)

GLIAC regular-season road win streak

6 (Feb. 18, 2016-current)

17 (Feb. 24, 2011-Jan. 24, 2012)

 

The Arrow Is Pointing Up

Through Jan. 15, the Eagles are the top team in Division II in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.75-to-1), assists per game (25.1), field-goal percentage (50.2) and scoring margin per game (34.2). Ashland is second in the country in scoring offense per game (94.6), tied for second in steals per game (15.6) and third in turnover margin per game (10.94).

Peare remains the top 3-point shooter in the country at 54.8 percent, and she is second in assist-to-turnover ratio at 3.95-to-1. Snyder is fifth in steals per game, while Henning is eighth in assist-to-turnover ratio (3.06-to-1).

In terms of D-II active career leaders, Snyder is fourth in steals per game (2.78) and seventh in total steals and double-doubles, while junior forward Julie Worley is ninth in field-goal percentage (57.1).

Ashland has Division II's top current winning streak at 18 games.

 

2016-17 Competitiveness Chart

The following is a look at the Eagles' 2016-17 "competitiveness chart" – the measure of how long a team leads, is tied and trails in a game:

 

DATE

OPPONENT

TIME AHEAD

TIME TIED

TIME BEHIND

11/11/16

CEDARVILLE

37:21

2:39

0:00

11/12/16

ALDERSON BROADDUS

38:28

1:32

0:00

11/19/16

INDIANAPOLIS

39:39

0:21

0:00

11/23/16

at Gannon

37:26

1:42

0:43

11/26/16

SLIPPERY ROCK

39:13

0:46

0:00

11/27/16

MERCYHURST

27:32

0:50

11:38

12/1/16

at Lake Superior State

39:29

0:31

0:00

12/3/16

at Northwood

38:00

1:00

1:00

12/8/16

SAGINAW VALLEY ST.

39:01

0:59

0:00

12/10/16

WAYNE STATE

38:56

1:04

0:00

12/14/16

at Notre Dame College

38:47

1:13

0:00

12/17/16

at Ferris State

38:30

1:30

0:00

12/19/16

at Grand Valley State

33:13

2:45

4:02

12/30/16

at Bellarmine

39:30

0:30

0:00

1/5/17

MICHIGAN TECH

23:28

5:00

11:32

1/7/17

NORTHERN MICHIGAN

38:20

1:16

0:24

1/12/17

OHIO DOMINICAN

39:13

0:47

0:00

1/14/17

HILLSDALE

35:26

0:28

4:06

 
 

AU

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