Women’s basketball continues conference play with road games at Southern Miss, Arkansas State

Game 1 – Old Dominion (14-9, 6-4 Sun Belt) at Southern Miss (14-7, 7-3 Sun Belt)
Game 2 – Old Dominion (14-9, 6-4 Sun Belt) at Arkansas State (6-15, 1-9 Sun Belt)
Game Information – Thursday, February 2 at 7:00 PM EST
Saturday, February 4th at 5:30pm EST
Location – Reed Green Coliseum (Hattiesburg, Miss.)
First National Bank Arena (Jonesboro, AR)
Watch – ESPN+ (Game 1 | Game 2)
I’m listening – ODU Sports Radio Network
Live Stats – Game 1 | Game 2
Social Media – Twitter | Facebook | Instagram
Game Notes – ODU

NORFOLK, VA – After splitting its conference games at home against Texas State and Coastal Carolina last week, Old Dominion women’s basketball will be on the road against Southern Miss this Thursday and Arkansas State on Saturday. Thursday’s game is scheduled to kick off at 7:00 PM EST and Saturday’s game is scheduled to kick off at 5:30 PM EST.

Both games will be available on ESPN+ and Andy Mashaw can be heard on the ODU Sports Radio Network. There will also be live stats.

The series

Thursday’s game against Southern Miss will be the 10th game in series history that ODU leads 5-4. The teams last played each other during the 2020 season, with the Monarchs winning at home 67-50. As for Arkansas State, this will be the first meeting with the Red Wolves.

About ODU

After dropping a game against Texas State 46-52 on Thursday, the Monarchs (14-9, 6-4 Sun Belt) bounced back Saturday against Coastal Carolina with a strong 14-point victory, 64-78. The monarchs were led by To Amari Young 17 points and eight rebounds. Makayla Dickens also chipped in with 11 points, and three other Monarchs contributed eight points each.

Young and Dickens are ODU’s top two scorers at 11.4 and 10.4 points per game, respectively. Clark followed with 9.0 points and Jordan McLaughlin followed with an average score of 8.7. Dickens made a team-high 46 shots from beyond the arc, and Young is the top rebounder with 7.9 rebounds per game. McLaughlin currently has 77 assists, Jada Duckett led the team with 14 blocks, and Young and Briana Jackson have 10 blocks each.

Clark leads ODU in total steals with 63 while averaging 2.7 steals per game. As of January 31, she ranked 13th in the nation and first in the Sun Belt in total steals and 26th nationally and first in the league in steals per game. As a team, ODU leads the conference and is 19th in the nation in forced turnovers per game (20.91). The Monarchs also lead the league and are ranked 25th nationally in turnover margin (4.87).

ODU owns a .384 (556-for-1449) shooting percentage and a .275 (119-for-433) field goal percentage while shooting .624 (247-for-396) at the free throw line. The team is outscoring opponents by +3.3 points while averaging 64.3 points and 13.1 assists per game.

About Southern Miss
The Golden Eagles (14-7, 7-3) won last Thursday’s road game against Arkansas State 68-59, but then lost in overtime against Texas State 62-52 on Saturday. Southern Miss ran out of steam in the extra period when they were outscored 14-4. Femi Funeus and Lanny Kornfield led the team in scoring with 14 points each in the loss.

Southern Miss has two players in double figures in scoring: Domonique Davis (17.0 ppg) and Melia Grayson (11.5 ppg). Grayson is ranked 24th in the nation in field goal percentage (.559) as well as first in the Sun Belt. Davis leads the conference in field goal attempts (313) and ranks second in the league in field goals made (128). Lauren Gross (4.8 ppg) knocked down a team-best 23 three-pointers, followed by Davis with 17, Kornfield (6.9 ppg) with 14 and Jacoria Bracey (9.0 ppg) with 11. Grayson (6.4 ppg ) and Funius (5.9 rpg) have combined for 209 rebounds, while Davis leads the team with 76 assists and 47 steals. Grayson and Asja Leake (2.2 ppg) recorded 12 and 10 blocks, respectively.

The Golden Eagles are averaging 62.2 points and outscoring their opponents by an average of 4.0 points. The team also outscored opponents by an average of 6.6 rebounds while pulling down 39.8.

Davis earned a preseason first-team nod and Grayson was a second-team selection. Southern Miss was projected to finish fourth in the preseason coaches poll with 137 points.

About the state of Arkansas
The Red Wolves are currently on a three game losing streak after dropping their last two games against Southern Miss (68-59) on Thursday and Marshall (71-59) on Saturday. A-State is currently 13th in the Sun belt standings with a 1-9 conference record and a 6-15 overall record.

Arkansas State is led by Izzy Higginbotham, who is averaging 13.5 points per game, and Lauryn Pendleton, who is averaging 12.3 points per game. Myloon Wilkerson (7.4 ppg) is the top threat from distance with 40 long balls. Melody Kapinga (5.5 ppg) leads the Sun Belt and is ranked 14th nationally in offensive rebounds per game (4.0). She grabs 7.3 boards per contest, while Anna Griffin (8.8 points) averages 7.9 rebounds. Higginbotham has 63 assists and 30 steals, while Kiara Ellis (4.4 ppg) has 20 blocks.

The Red Wolves are outscored by a margin of 5.1 while averaging 65.2 points per game. They are also outscored by a margin of 1.5, but still manage to come away with 39.7 rpg.

Arkansas State received 96 points and was voted to finish ninth in the Sun Belt in the preseason poll.

NET Rankings
Sun Belt Conference NCAA NET Rankings – As of Jan. 31

James Madison 103
Troy 111
Louisiana 155
Old possession 162
Southern Miss 165
State of Texas 175
Marshall 184
South Georgia 204
Coastal Carolina 206
State of Georgia 229
Application status 235
State of Arkansas 276
ULM 326
South Alabama 335

Next up

ODU opens a four-game homestand starting next week as the Monarchs host Georgia Southern on February 9th and Georgia State on February 11th. The matchup with the Panthers will mark ODU’s Hoops for the Cure game.

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