Lady Monarchs Hit Road to Play Georgia State on Thursday
By ODU Athletics
Feb. 17, 2010
Thursday, February 18th - 6:00 p.m.
Old Dominion University Lady Monarchs (13-10, 11-2 CAA) at
Georgia State University Panthers (13-11, 4-9 CAA)
GSU Sports Arena (3,400) - Atlanta, Ga.
ATLANTA, Ga. -- The first place Lady Monarchs (13-10, 11-2 CAA) travel to Atlanta for a Thursday evening tilt against the Georgia State Panthers (13-11, 4-9 CAA) at 6:00 p.m. The game is the first of just two remaining road games for the Lady Monarchs, as ODU will travel to VCU next Sunday, February 28.
Last season, the Lady Monarchs lost to Georgia State for the first time on their trip to Atlanta. ODU holds an 8-1 advantage in the all-time series, though, including a four-point win in Norfolk earlier this season.
ODU has been playing terrific team basketball this season, with three players averaging over 10 points per game and a fourth, Jessica Canady, who has contributed almost nine per game. Junior Shadasia Green leads the team at 11.7 ppg while Jasmine Parker has a team-high 12.8 per game in CAA games. Sophomore Tia Lewis is also over 10 ppg and ranks among the CAA's Top 20 in scoring, rebounding and field goal percentage.
Georgia State has been led by senior Danyiell McKeller, ranking fifth in the CAA and the Top 25 in the nation in scoring with 18.8 points per game. She's also number two in the league in steals per game with 2.6, leading one of the most prominent teams in the league in thefts. The Panthers are also ranked tops in the league as a team in assists and assist/turnover ratio. The Lea Henry coached Panthers are the leading defense in the CAA, holding opponents to just 56 points per game.
About Today's Game
All-Time Series - Georgia State took their first victory in the all-time series last season, defeating ODU in Atlanta, 75-62. Prior to the win, ODU had won seven straight to open the series, dating back to the 2005-2006 season when the Panthers joined the CAA. With the win earlier this season, ODU now holds a 8-1 advantage in the all-time series.
About the Panthers - Georgia State had a stellar non-conference season this year, going 9-2 in out of league games. The Panthers pieced together a six-game winning streak and their only losses in the first 12 games came to the ACC's Florida State University and Georgia Tech.
However, Georgia State has struggled in league play, losing in 9 of their last 12 games. The Panthers won against Towson and William & Mary at home and also on the road vs. George Mason
GSU has been led by returning star Danyiell McKeller, among the league leaders in scoring. McKeller is averaging 18.8 points per game and is also second on the team in rebounding, hauling in 6.3 rebounds per game. She is fifth in the league in scoring and is shooting 41.4% from the field. She is among the league leaders in thefts, stealing 2.6 per game, tied for second in the CAA.
Speaking of steals, the Panthers are one of the best in the league in takeaways, averaging 11.0 per game, behind only VCU. Georgia State leads the conference in assists and assist/turnover ratio, led by point guard Crystal Johnson. Johnson is averaging nearly six assists per game, leading the league.
Georgia State lost second-leading scorer Chan Harris for the season to a foot injury and have seen Shay Rawls step into the starting slot.
Whew! That Was Close
ODU is excelling in tight ball games this season, winning eight of their ten games decided by single digits, including six straight. Three came on the road (JMU, Towson and UNCW) and ODU also defeated Georgia State, Hofstra and Delaware at home by single digits. Old Dominion's closest game this season was a 1-point win at Delaware, powered to victory by Jasmine Parker taking a charge and knocking down a go-ahead 3-pointer late in the game.
JMU, one of the nation's top long-ball teams, was able to knock down just a pair of 3-pointers on 23 attempts against the Lady Monarchs. For the season, ODU ranks third in the CAA in 3-pt FG percentage defense, allowing just 29.7% from beyond the arc. In conference only games, ODU leads the league, allowing an abysmal 23.3% from long range (40-for-172).
Hot Conference Shooting
ODU can be found among the league leaders in several statistical categories. In conference games this season, sophomore Tia Lewis is third in the league in field goal percentage, knocking down 53.7% of her shots. ODU holds two of the top five spots as senior Jessica Canady is fifth in the league, with 52% of her shots falling.
As a team, ODU is second in the league in schooting percentage. ODU is shooting at a 42.4% clip while Delaware leads at 42.7% as a team. The Lady Monarchs are also scorching from long-range, shooting 32.8% from beyond the arc in CAA games, fourth in the league. ODU also ranks second in free-throw shooting, knocking down 77.1% from the charity stripe.
CAA Preseason Poll
The Lady Monarchs were picked to finish third in the CAA Preseason Rankings, as voted on by the head coaches. Defending champions Drexel were pegged as the top team heading into 2009-10 with James Madison also selected ahead of ODU.
2009-10 Preseason Predicted Order of Finish:
2. James Madison
3. Old Dominion
8. UNC Wilmington
9. William and Mary
11. Georgia State
12. George Mason