Holding a 2-0 record after the opening weekend of C-USA play, WKU will round out its longest homestand of the 2017-18 season on Thursday evening at 7 p.m. as the Lady Toppers welcome FIU into E.A. Diddle Arena.
In their last time out, the Lady Toppers overcame a third-quarter deficit and outscored Southern Miss 26-10 in the fourth quarter to grab an 81-60 win in a rematch of the 2017 C-USA title game. Ivy Brown (23 points) and Tashia Brown (22 points) led the way for WKU, and Dee Givens added 12 points on 4-of-8 shooting off the bench as an offensive spark.
Tashia Brown leads all C-USA players with 23.1 points per game and fellow preseason All-C-USA pick Ivy Brown is just shy of averaging a double-double at 15.5 points and 9.7 rebounds per game. The pair have combined to score just over 50 percent of WKU’s points this season.
FIU (4-11, 1-1 C-USA) is led by the duo of Kiandre’a Pound and Kristian Hudson, who average 14.3 and 14.1 points per game, respectively. Pound, the 2014-15 C-USA Freshman of the Year, is just shy of averaging a double-double with 9.9 rebounds per game, and Hudson has dealt a team-best 64 assists while starting all 15 games for the Panthers.
WKU will go on the road for the first time in C-USA play in its next time out, meeting a UAB team with a perfect 7-0 home record inside Bartow Arena on Saturday evening at 6:30 p.m.
GAME #16 / C-USA GAME #3 – WKU VS. FIU
WKU (11-4, 2-0 C-USA) vs. FIU (4-11, 1-1 C-USA)
January 11, 2018 | 7:00 p.m. (CT)
Bowling Green, Ky. | E.A. Diddle Arena (7,326)
– As of Jan. 10, WKU is ranked No. 36 in the latest NCAA RPI rankings and has faced three teams in the top 15 in Notre Dame, Missouri and Iowa. WKU is the one of only two C-USA representatives in the top 100 of the rankings, with UAB second at No. 99.
– Because of their time spent together in the Sun Belt, WKU has met FIU more frequently than any other C-USA opponent besides Middle Tennessee and Louisiana Tech. The Lady Toppers and Panthers have played a total of 37 times since the 1998-99 season, and WKU holds a 28-9 lead in the series, including wins in the last four meetings between the two sides.
– Since its last home C-USA loss against UTEP on Feb. 6, 2016, WKU has won 13 consecutive home tilts against conference competition. That streak is WKU’s longest in the category since winning 17 straight home conference games in Sun Belt competition from 2003-04 to 2006-07.
– Through 15 games, Ivy Brown is also approaching the top 10 in program history in total rebounds, needing just 14 more boards to break into that group. The Hodgenville, Ky., native is also sixth in school history with 120 blocks and her 80.7 percent mark from the free throw line for her career is fifth among all Lady Toppers who have made at least 200 free throws.
– Already 11th in program history with 1,677 career points, Tashia Brown is looking to move even further up the charts during her senior season. To move into the top 10 in school history, Brown would need to score 86 more points during her final season on The Hill.
– Through 15 games, WKU leads all C-USA teams and ranks 11th nationally for the fewest turnovers per game, giving up the ball only 12.0 times per contest. The Lady Toppers have had single-digit turnovers in six games this season and rank second in the league in turnover margin at +6.7 per game.
– Tashia Brown leads C-USA and is fifth among all players in the nation with 23.1 points per game in 2017-18. Brown has not scored fewer than 14 points in any single game this season.
– WKU owns an impressive record under Clark-Heard when breaking the 80-point barrier. The Lady Toppers have posted a near-perfect 52-3 mark when scoring 80 or more since the 2012-13 season.
– After knocking down 15 of her last 25 three-point attempts, Sidnee Bopp now leads all C-USA players with her 49.0 three-point field goal percentage this season. Heading into Thursday’s game against FIU, Bopp is 24-of-49 from three-point range this season, and her 49.0 percent mark would currently top the program’s single-season charts in the category.
– Ivy Brown is currently tied for 17th in the country with eight double-doubles, already matching her total from the entire 2016-17 season. Brown has 26 career points-rebounds double-doubles, tied with Shea Lunsford and Dianne Depp for the seventh-most in program history.
– When holding opponents under 70 points this season, WKU owns a perfect 10-0 record and is 115-13 (.898) in that category dating back to the 2012-13 season.
– Through 15 games, WKU leads C-USA and is 10th in the country from the free throw line, going 235-of-301 (78.1 percent) from the charity stripe. The Lady Toppers’ 235 made free throws are second only to Charlotte’s 238 among all C-USA teams, and WKU has shot 80 percent or better in seven games this season.
– After allowing an average of 82.8 points per game across its first four matchups this season, WKU’s defense has buckled down over its last 10 games. During that stretch, the Lady Toppers are giving up only 59.1 points per game and have allowed more than 64 points just one time over that same span.
– WKU has been very strong at collecting its own misses this season and has tallied nearly as many offensive rebounds as those on the defensive end. The Lady Toppers have pulled down a league-leading 16.3 offensive boards per game, and Ivy Brown leads all C-USA players with 4.2 offensive rebounds per game. WKU’s 16.3 offensive boards also ranks 14th in the nation among Division I teams.
– Just one week after Ivy Brown tied the program record with 16 points in the third quarter at Southern Illinois, Tashia Brown matched that mark in the third quarter against Toledo on Dec. 17. Brown scored 16 of the team’s 18 points in the frame, including 14 straight points, and outscored the entire Toledo team, 16-13, over the 10-minute span.
– WKU has started a true freshman at least five times in each of the last four seasons. Tashia Brown earned five starts in 2014-15, Kayla Smith drew 31 starts in 2015-16, Sarah Price appeared in the starting lineup five times in 2016-17 and Raneem Elgedawy (15) and Sherry Porter (6) have been consistent starters for the Lady Toppers this season.
Listen: 102.7 FM and 1450AM in Bowling Green (Jevin Redman, pxp; John Butler, analysis)
Watch: C-USA TV (Online Stream, Radio Simulcast)
Live Audio: C-USA TV (Online Audio)
Live Stats: Courtesy of WKU Athletics
How to Follow the Lady Toppers: For complete information on WKU Lady Topper Basketball, visit WKUSports.com or follow the program via social media @LadyTopperHoops on Twitter, @LadyTopperHoops on Instagram and on Facebook at facebook.com/WKUWomensBasketball.
– @WKUSports –
Currie P. McFayden
WKU Associate Director of Athletic Communications
Women’s Basketball | Women’s Soccer