Charleston Southern will travel to Asheville as the Buccanneers take on the Bulldogs Tuesday night. Tipoff at Kimmel Arena is set for 7:00 p.m. on the Big South Network and fans can follow the action via Live Stats on CSUsports.com and in-game updates on Twitter: @CSUGameDay.
Women's Basketball Game Notes - at UNC Asheville
Scouting UNC Asheville
UNC Asheville entered the 2016-17 slate ranked No. 1 in the Big South Preseason Poll with eight first-place votes. The Bulldogs are currently ranked No. 7 in the league with an overall record of 10-9 and a 4-4 record in Big South play. They have been topped by Gardner-Webb, High Point and Campbell and most recently fell to Radford in a 64-62 loss in overtime on Saturday. Conversely, UNC Asheville has recorded conference-wins against Presbyterian, Liberty, Winthrop and Longwood. Tuesday marks CSU's 66th meeting with UNC Asheville, with the Bulldogs holding the 34-31 advantage in the series and a two-game winning streak against the Buccaneers.
UNC Asheville's offense is led by 2016-17 Preseason Player of the Year, Chartori Major. Major, the reigning 2015-16 Big South Conference Player of the Year and BSC Tournament MVP, is averaging 12.5 points per game and is ranked fifth in the conference for most points scored. The senior guard has proven she's a threat from beyond the arc, recording 38 three-pointers on the season for an average of 1.9 per game to earn her the No. 2-ranking in the Big South. Defensively, the Bulldogs are paced by KJ Weaver. The 6-1 senior center leads the conference with 34 blocks on the season and is ranked second in the Big South with 7.8 rebounds per game.
Head Coach Brenda Mock Kirkpatrick is in her fifth year at the helm of the UNC Asheville Women's Basketball program. In the 2015-16 season, Kirkpatrick earned Big South Conference Coach of the Year honors while leading her team to the biggest turnaround season in NCAA Division I women's basketball, finishing the year with an overall record of 26-7. She was also named the Division I women's basketball Coach of the Year by HERO Sports. Last year, Kirkpatrick guided the Bulldogs to the program's first ever Big South Conference Regular Season Title, a Big South Conference Tournament Championship and an NCAA first round appearance.
Last Time Against UNC Asheville
UNC Asheville 91, Charleston Southern 68 (March 1, 2016)
Charleston Southern was unable to slow down a balanced UNC Asheville attack on Tuesday night as the Buccaneers closed out the 2015-16 regular season on the road in Kimmel Arena, 91-68.
Alyssa Mann closed out her final regular season game with the Buccaneers with a team-high 12 points. The senior guard added six assists and five rebounds from the floor to pace a CSU (13-16, 8-12) offense that shot 37.3% from the floor as a team in the contest.
Georgia Elliott-King added nine fourth quarter points for the Bucs as the freshman guard connected on a trio of three-pointers as CSU outscored the Bulldogs 31-18 over the final 10 minutes of the game. Nayla Long and Alecia Hardy also added nine points apiece in the loss.
UNC Asheville (22-6, 15-4) never trailed in the contest and had five players in double-digits led by Bronaza Fitzgerald's double-double with 18 points and 15 rebounds. Khalia Webb added 13 points, while Chatori Major (12), Tianna Knuckles (11) and Sonora Dengokl (10) all paced an Asheville offensive that connected on a 55.8% field goal percentage from the floor.
Major connected on a three-pointer on Asheville's second possession of the game and the Bulldogs built a double-digit lead on another Major triple at the 1:45 mark of the first quarter as the Buccaneers trailed 26-14 after the first quarter. The Bucs' deficit reached 20 points just before half despite eight first half points by Mann and five points from Long as CSU went into the break trailing 48-24.
Asheville's lead reached 30 points midway through the third quarter and reached 40 points in the fourth quarter as the Bulldogs closed out the season sweep over CSU.
Recapping CSU's Last Game
Charleston Southern 62, Longwood 47 (January 28, 2017)
Paced by a career-high 25 points from Rachel Burns, Charleston Southern picked up its fifth Big South Conference win of the season with a convincing 62-47 road win over Longwood on Saturday afternoon.
The Buccaneers (11-8, 5-3) turned a 25-22 halftime lead into a double-digit advantage after the third quarter on the way to recording CSU's third straight conference win. The Bucs also recorded their first conference road win of the season with the 15-point victory over the Lancers (3-16, 0-8).
Burns went 11-for-20 from the floor to pace a 49.1% shooting day from the floor for the Bucs in her second 20-point game of the season. The sophomore guard added nine rebounds to pace CSU to the 39-30 advantage on the glass in the win. Ke'Asia Jackson was also in double-digits for the Bucs with 10 points in the contest. The Big South's leading scorer entering the game, Jackson was 5-of-11 from the floor and added a pair of steals in the contest.
Jackson and Burns paced CSU with four points apiece in the first quarter in building the 14-10 advantage after the first 10 minutes. The Bucs ended the quarter on a 6-2 run with Jasmine Blackmon contributing two of her six first-half points with a layup with 15 seconds left in the period in building the four-point advantage. Blackmon added CSU's first two baskets of the second quarter as the Bucs stretched their advantage to 18-13 less than 75 seconds into the period. Longwood cut the Bucs' lead down to 20-19 with 1:44 left in the quarter following a pair of Micaela Ellis' free throws. Burns connected on five straight points to end the first half and give CSU the 25-22 lead at the break.
CSU utilized a 10-3 run in the third quarter to take its first double-digit lead of the game at 39-29 following a Burns' three-pointer with 4:06 left in the period. Brianna Lakes and Tierra Steede both added layups late to give CSU the 46-33 advantage after three periods.
Longwood narrowed the CSU lead to within single digits at 46-38 following a Kate Spradlin layup and a Khaila Hall three-pointer with 9:20 to go. Burns silenced the Lancers' threat with a stretch with seven straight points to help the Bucs put the game away. Ellis and Spradlin led Longwood with nine points apiece in the loss, while Autumn Childress led the team with nine rebounds in the contest.
Buccaneers' Standings in the Big South and the NCAA
- Alyssa Mann leads the Big South with 4.5 assists per game and is ranked 101st in the NCAA
- Alyssa Mann is 4th in the Big South in steals per game with 2.0 and 111th in the NCAA
- Alyssa Mann is 7th in the Big South in points per game with 12.3
- Ke'Asia Jackson leads the Big South in points per game with 15.7
- Ke'Asia Jackson leads the Big South in free-throw percentage with 90.8 and is ranked 16th in the NCAA with 89.6 percent
- Ke'Asia Jackson is 2nd in the Big South in field-goal percentage with 44.8
- Elyse Kiploks is 3rd in the Big South in blocked shots with 23
- Elyse Kiploks is 3rd in the Big South in blocked shots per game with 1.3
- Rachel Burns is 3rd in the Big South in steals per game with 2.1
Team Standings in the Big South and the NCAA
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in turnovers forced with 21.58 and is ranked 15th in the NCAA
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in turnover margin with 5.61 and is ranked 24th in the NCAA with 5.47
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in steals with 162
- Charleston Southern leads the Big South in steals per game with 9.00
- Charleston Southern is 2nd in the Big South in assists per game with 13.17
- Charleston Southern is 3rd in the Big South in fewest turnovers with 306
- Charleston Southern is 3rd in the Big South in won-lost percentage with 57.9