Game 6 • Monday, November 28, 2011 • 12:00 p.m. CT
North Texas Mean Green (4-1, 0-0 Sun Belt)
at Arizona Wildcats (4-0, 0-0 Pac-12)
Tuscon, Ariz. • McKale Center (14,545)
Radio: KNTU 88.1 FM • TV: None
Series Record: Arizona leads 1-0
Last: L, 88-73 (12/21/2010) at Arizona
Live Stats • Live Audio • Twitter Feed North Texas Travels To Arizona With 4-1 Start
North Texas, who is 4-1 for the first time since 2005-06, goes to Arizona, to take on a 4-0 Wildcat squad. The Mean Green have started 2-0 in road games for the first time since 2000-01, winning at UT Arlington and Texas State, but now face a tougher test against Arizona, who went to the 2011 WNIT. Despite only being five games into the season, North Texas can match their win total from 2010-11 with one more victory this season.
Mean Green Off To Fast Start
North Texas had its first 2-0 start since 2005-06, and first 4-1 start since 2005-06, with Karen Aston taking over the reins of the program. Aston joined Tina Slinker as the only two coaches in North Texas program history to win a debut game, with a 66-47 road win, and joins Slinker as the only coaches to start their North Texas career 4-1. North Texas has started the season 2-0 in road games, their best start on the road since 2000-01. The Mean Green allowed 256 points in its first five games, the fewest amount of points allowed through five games in program history.
North Texas vs. Arizona
North Texas has only played Arizona once, falling 88-73 to the Wildcats last season in Tucson. Karen Aston has coached against Arizona once as well, falling 86-77 in overtime as the coach of Charlotte on Nov. 11, 2007. North Texas is 1-3 against the Pac-12, beating Washington State 87-85 at The Super Pit on Dec. 30, 1988 for its only win against the Pac-12. Arizona is the first opponent from the Pac-12 that North Texas has played twice.
Last Time Against Arizona
TUCSON, Ariz. (12/21/2010) - Despite a career-high 25 points from Jasmine Godbolt, North Texas fell short and Arizona defeated the Mean Green 88-73 at the McKale Center. Denetra Kellum poured in 24 points for North Texas as well but Arizona had four players score in double figures and was able to pull away from the Mean Green late in the second half.
North Texas started quickly as they raced out to a 10-5 led on Arizona in the first half. Arizona countered with a 12-1 run to take a 17-11 with 13:56 left in the first half. North Texas cut the lead to three points at 24-21 with 10 minutes left in the half off a Jacquelyn Hearne put-back.Arizona answered again with a 20-9 run to push the lead to 14 points at 44-30 late in the first half.
Led by Davellyn Whyte and Ify Ibekwe, who combined to score 42 points, Arizona opened up a 58-40 led in the second half. Whyte finished the game with 22 points while Ibekwe had a double-double with 20 points and 10 rebounds.
Jasmine Godbolt and Tamara Torru have been North Texas' most consistent scorers this year, with both players reaching double-digits in scoring every game this season. Torru has North Texas' only 20+ point game this season, putting up 22 at Texas State on Nov. 25. Both Torru and Godbolt have led North Texas in scoring in two games this season.
Eight Is A Great Start
Tamara Torru scored North Texas' first eight points against Texas State on Nov. 25, helping the Mean Green to a 8-3 lead to start the game, and giving her a head start on coming one point away from her career-high, pouring in 22 points against the Bobcats. The 22 points are the most scored by any North Texas player in a single game this season, and the first 20+ point effort by a North Texas player in 2011-12.
Nien, Nien, Yes!
Jasmine Godbolt picked up two straight double doubles, against SMU on Nov. 22 and at Texas State on Nov. 25, after just missing on picking up a double-double in the two games prior to that stretch, picking up double-digit points and nine rebounds in both games. Godbolt has come one rebound away from picking up a double-double eight times in her career.
North Texas has held opponents to 50 points or fewer four times this season, which is the most times an opponent has been held to the half-century mark or less since 2005-06. North Texas held opponents to 50 points or fewer just three times in the span from 2008-11. North Texas held its opponents to 50 or less seven times in both 2004-05 and 2005-06, which is the school record.
No Need To Be (Mc)Coy About It
Laura McCoy is now 16-of-16 on the year in free throws, and has picked up six or more rebounds in two straight games, setting her current career-high with eight against SMU on Nov. 22 and tying her previous career-high with six at Texas State on Nov. 25. McCoy had one of the best games of her career against SMU, putting up career-highs in rebounds (8), assists (4), and set a season-high in points (9). McCoy seems to enjoy playing the Ponies, her career-high in points was also set against SMU, scoring 12 points against them in 2010-11.
It's Not How You Start, It's How You Finish
Despite going without a point for the first 9:32 of the game, and digging a 9-0 deficit, North Texas came back to beat SMU 50-46 on Nov. 22. The win is the biggest comeback victory for North Texas since it overcame a 13 point deficit to beat Nicholls State on Dec. 13, 2010. North Texas first took the lead in the game at 19:25 of the second half, when Laura McCoy made a 3-pointer to go up 23-22.
Game Time Changed For Tulane
North Texas' Dec. 7 home game against Tulane has been moved to 7:30 p.m., from its original game time of 7 p.m. The game time has been pushed back to accomadate fans who want to attend both the football banquet earlier that evening, and the women's basketball game.
North Texas came away with s 50-46 win over SMU on Nov. 22, marking the first win for North Texas over the Mustangs since 2005-06. Prior to the 2011-12 academic year, no North Texas program had beaten SMU since football's 24-6 win over the Mustangs in 2006, but soccer and women's basketball have pulled out wins against the Mustangs this year. Karen Aston is now 2-0 against SMU boss Rhonda Rompola, with Aston winning a 2008-09 season game with Charlotte.
Hudson Steals The Show
Brittney Hudson is leading the Sun Belt Conference with 3.0 steals per game, and has 15 steals so far in the season, almost two-thirds of the way to her career high of 23, set in 2009-10. In addition, she ranks 17th in the conference in points per game, and 15th in the league in free throw percentage. She is on pace to nab 90 steals this year, which would be only seven below the North Texas single-season record.
They're Free For A Reason
North Texas has two players who are perfect from the free throw line so far this season. Laura McCoy is 16-for-16 from the line, including a 6-for-6 peformance at UT Arlington. Ash'Lynne Evans is 9-of-9 from the charity stripe. As a team, North Texas ranks 3rd in the Sun Belt and has a .718 free throw percentage.
Crashing The Boards
North Texas is owning the offensive glass this season, having a 43.2% offensive rebounding percentage (83 offensive rebounds, 109 defensive rebounds allowed), which ranks third in the Sun Belt Conference.. The Mean Green have scored 75 second-chance points on offensive rebounds, and have only allowed 34 second-chance points on 62 offensive rebounds allowed.
Torru Seeing Double-Double
Tamara Torru had the second double-double of her career at UT Arlington (13 pts, 12 reb) on Nov. 11, helping the Mean Green to a 66-47 victory. Torru grabbed 12 rebounds at UTA, just one short of her career-high 13, and reached 10+ rebounds for only the third time in her career. Torru is the first North Texas player since Erika Bobo in 2005 to open the season with a double-double. She also tied a career-high with three assists.
North Texas Faces Daunting Schedule
North Texas' schedule includes 12 home games, plus marquee non-conference showdowns with New Mexico, SMU and Alabama coming to the Super Pit, and games against Oregon State, Arizona and Texas away from home. The rugged schedule contains 13 games, plus a potential 14th in the Rice Tournament, against teams which made the WNIT or NCAA Tournament last season.
The Super Pit Is It
The Mean Green won its five of its last six non-conference home games dating back to the start of 2010-11, and have won seven of its last nine non-conference home games in the Super Pit, dating back to 2009. Since 1998-99, North Texas is 104-55 (.654) in all games at The Super Pit.
NT Records At Home Since 1998-99
Bolting Into The Record Books
Jasmine Godbolt has a chance to enter the record books in numerous offensive categories. Godbolt is only 178 points away from becoming only the 13th player in school history to score 1,000 points. She ranks 10th at North Texas in career rebounds and is 229 away from the school record. Godbolt has made 220 free throws for her career, 2 away from the top-10 in school history, while she already ranks fifth all-time with 400 free throw attempts.
Defense Wins Championships
One area of emphasis for head coach Karen Aston is on the defensive side of the ball. North Texas has allowed over 70 points in each of the last three seasons, as they allowed an average of 74.3 points a game during that stretch. In her last two seasons at Charlotte, Aston's team allowed an average of just 60.2 points a game while its opponents shot under 35 percent from the floor.
NT Defense the last 2 years Charlotte defense the last 2 years
Year Points FG% Year Points FG%
2009-10 78.5 43.8 2009-10 60.3 32.4
2010-11 73.3 41.9 2010-11 60.1 35.6
2011-12 51.2 34.8
Mean Green Voted Fifth
North Texas recieved one first place vote and was picked to finish fifth in the West Division in the preseason coaches poll. Denver was picked to finish first in the West, and Middle Tennessee was picked to win the East division.
2011-12 Sun Belt Preseason Poll
West Division Points East Division Points
1. Denver 62 (6) 1. Middle Tennessee 68 (9)
2. Arkansas State 56 (1) 2. FIU 58 (1)
3. UALR 53 (3) 3. Western Kentucky 48 (1)
4. Louisiana-Monroe 29 4. South Alabama 38
5. North Texas 28 (1) 5. Florida Atlantic 23 (1)
6. Louisiana-Lafayette 24 (1) 6. Troy 17
Torru Shoots The Three
Senior Tamara Torru led North Texas with 28 3-pointers last season and has a chance to break into the top-10 all-time at North Texas. Torru has 48 3-pointers for her career and needs only 15 more to enter the top-10 all-time.
Hot Hoops In Hot Springs
For the fourth consecutive season, the Sun Belt Conference Tournament will be held in Hot Springs, Arkansas at the Summit Arena & Convention Center. The format features all 12 teams going to Hot Springs. The top two teams from each division will earn byes into the quarterfinals. The women's tournament will be held from March 3-6. North Texas' Coaches Show is on the day preceding the tournament, March 2, from Lucky's in Hot Springs.
North Texas On The Tube
The Sun Belt Network televises three North Texas women's basketball conference games this season. The Jan. 15 game at ULM game begins at 2 p.m. on the Sun Belt Network. The network televises a home double-header with the men's basketball team against Arkansas State on Jan. 28, at 7 p.m., which will also be live on Cox Sports Television (CST) and Comcast Sports Southwest (CSS). A home double-header on Feb. 18 against Louisiana-Lafayette tips off 1 p.m. followed by the men's game at 3:30 p.m, both televised on the Sun Belt Network.
North Texas Inks Five
North Texas signed five players in the early signing period, including two guards, Briana Brooks and Loryn Goodwin, and three forwards in Eboniey Jeter, I'Tiana Taylor and Acheil Tac. Brooks (Tyler Robert E. Lee HS), was named first-team all-district in her junior year, posting 15.5 points and five assists per game. Goodwin (Cypress Falls HS) was named was named TGCA All-State and TBCA All-Region, All-Super Centex team, and was the District 12-5A Offensive MVP in 2010-11. Jeter (Harker Heights HS) averaged 13.9 points and 16 rebounds a year her junior year, en route to being named first team all-district. Tac (Sasche HS) is one of the leading rebounders in the Dallas/Fort Worth area for a forward and was named All-District 10-5A in 2011. Taylor (Pflugerville HS) ranks as the 52nd best power forward in the country by Dan Olsen Girls Basketball Report.