Women's Basketball Hits the Road for a SoCon Matchup at Furman Thursday
GREENSBORO, N.C. – UNCG women’s basketball is back in action tomorrow night in Timmons Arena as it travels to Greenville, South Carolina for a matchup with the Furman Paladins at 7. The Spartans are coming off a loss to Chattanooga at home and are 10-14 on the season, 4-5 in Southern Conference play. Furman enters at 13-11 and 3-6 in league play.
This is the 47th meeting all-time between UNCG and Furman with UNCG holding a 24-22 advantage. During the 2016-17 regular season, the teams split the matchups with each team winning on its home floor. The Spartans bounced the Paladins from the SoCon Tournament to end Furman’s season. In the previous matchup this season, UNCG outlasted the Paladins, earning a 76-74 double overtime victory in Greensboro.
Live stats and a video stream will be available for the match. Links for these services are located on the women’s basketball schedule page. Stats are available via FurmanPaladins.com. Video will be streamed live on ESPN3.
With a win, UNCG would move back to .500 in SoCon play and it would be the Spartans’ second road SoCon victory of the season. UNCG has won just three games on the road this season. The last road victory came two weeks ago in Cullowhee, North Carolina as the Spartans scored a big victory at Western Carolina.
UNCG has won two of its last three games, with Nadine Soliman (Cairo, Egypt/Mokattam Language School) continuing to pace the offense. Soliman has scored an average of 23.7 points in the last three games, including a career-high 33 points in the win over Western Carolina. On the season, Soliman averages 14.3 points per game and leads the team with 38 made 3-pointers on the season.
Ije Ajemba (Lanham, Md./Old Dominion) currently averages a double-double, scoring 11.4 points per game and grabbing 12.3 rebounds per game. Her 296 total rebounds ranks fourth in the nation and is already a Division I school record for rebounds in a season. She’s already set the UNCG single season defensive rebounds record, grabbing 199. She broke Te’ja Twitty’s (Rutherfordton, N.C./Rutherfordton-Spindale Central) records of 277 total rebounds and 167 defensive rebounds set last season.
Alexus Willey (Waldorf, Md./Riverdale Baptist) and Twitty each average over 9.0 points per game. Willey scores 9.7 points per game, hitting 36 3-pointers on the season. She’s grabbed 88 rebounds and dished out 33 assists. Defensively she’s stuffed 17 opponent shots and grabbed 17 steals on the year.
Twitty averages 9.3 points and 6.2 rebounds per contest. Twitty has scored in double figures in four of the last five games, while shooting 50-percent from the field in that time.
The Spartans and the Paladins are the two best rebounding teams in the SoCon. Furman leads the league with a +5.6 rebounding margin, while the Spartans average a +4.5 rebounding margin. In the earlier meeting this season, the rebounds were level at 48. UNCG’s bench play came up big as the Spartans’ bench outscored Furman’s bench 34-20 in the victory.
Furman is currently in sixth-place in the SoCon standings. The Paladins started the league season with a victory over Samford and have knocked off Western Carolina and Chattanooga in the first half of the league schedule. Furman has lost three-straight games and return to Timmons Arena for the first time in 18 days. At home, Furman has gone 9-2.
The Paladins allow the second-most points per game in the SoCon, giving up 64.9 points per contest. They make up for it on the offensive end, scoring 66.9 points per game for a +2.0 average scoring margin. Furman has been battle tested this year, competing in three overtime games. In those three games, FU is 0-3, and is coming off of a 62-58 overtime loss at Samford.
Three Paladins score in double figures, led by Cierra Carter. Carter averages 15.8 points per game and has started 23 games. Her 36.2 minutes per game leads the team as she shoots 45-percent from the field. Carter also grabs 6.7 rebounds per game and has dished out 41 assists. Le’Jzae Davidson averages 13.5 points per game and leads the Paladins with 55 made 3-pointers. She’s dished out 41 assists and grabbed 28 steals.
Celena Taborn has been a force off the bench. Playing in just 19.9 minutes per game, she averages 12.3 points per contest and 5.9 rebounds per game. She leads Furman with 66 personal fouls on the year which has limited playing time. Stephania Oramas has started all 24 games and averaged 4.6 assists per game per game, third best in the league.