Women's Basketball Looks For Winning Streak In Trip To Iona

Dec. 12, 2015

Junior Kelsey Criner has hit shots to put NT up in the last minute of each win this season. (Photo by Rick Yeatts)

North Texas Women's Basketball vs. Iona 
Date | Time   Sunday, December 13 | 1:00 p.m. CT
Location    New Rochelle, NY | The Hynes Athletics Center
Live Stats    ICGaels.com
Stream   Iona Insider ($)
Radio   Mean Green Radio Network - 88.1 KNTU-FM
  Steven "Poppy" Bartolotta (Play-by-Play)
Twitter   @MeanGreenWBB
Game Notes   North Texas | Iona | Conference USA

DENTON - Coming off one of the program’s biggest comebacks in last week’s game against IUPUI, North Texas women’s basketball looks to do something it hasn't been able to do all season in this weekend’s showdown with Iona - put together a win streak.

Fortunately, the Mean Green will have a chance to do just that when the team travels to New York to face the Gaels. The midday matchup will take place at 1 p.m. Sunday, December 13, at the Hynes Athletics Center in New Rochelle.

“I’m looking forward to taking a step forward and winning back-to-back games,” head coach Jalie Mitchell said prior to the team’s departure. “I think it’s important for us to take that step as a team and we need to take it now as opposed to trying to string wins together once conference gets here. That’s what our conversations have been about.”

Four games remain on the Mean Green schedule before the start of Conference USA action, with those opponents combining for a 8-24 record on the year. A win on Sunday would give North Texas its first pair of consecutive wins since February, and the team would have a .500 record through at least eight games for the first time since the 2013-14 season.

Much like North Texas, Sunday’s opponent is a team that relies heavily on its defense. At 3-6 on the year, Iona’s D allows 59.9 points per game, going along with 7.2 steals and 3 blocks per contest. The matinee showdown will be the first all-time meeting between the two sides.

Individually, junior Marina Lizarazu averages a team-leading 13.7 points per game, while senior Joy Adams is sure to get attention from the Mean Green defense as she puts in 12.4 points and 10.6 boards per outing.

The Mean Green’s success on the court will likely hinge on the trio of Kelsey Criner, Acheil Tac and Candice Adams, three players that have come up huge for the Mean Green in recent games.

Criner hit a corner three-pointer with less than a minute to go against the Jags on Saturday to give North Texas the lead, good for her third last-minute go-ahead basket in as many wins this season. Meanwhile, Tac already has two double-doubles on the year and eyed a third with 12 points and eight rebounds versus IUPUI. Not to be outdone, Adams - the team’s leading scorer with 11.5 ppg - dropped a career-high 18 points in the team’s last win.

The North Texas head coach would like to see solid performances continue down the stretch for the roster.

“Consistency is key for us,” Mitchell said in closing. “[This game] is an opportunity for our team and I’m looking forward to seeing how we respond to it.”



North Texas Mean Green