Upstate Opens Two-Game A-Sun Home Stand Saturday Against Belmont
Spartansburg, S.C. – USC Upstate will open its two-game A-Sun homestand Saturday when Belmont comes to the Hodge Center for a 4:30 p.m. tip. Belmont leads the all-time series, 4-2, but Upstate has claimed the last two wins in the series, a season sweep last year, including a 90-73 victory in Spartanburg.
Upstate enters the game with an 8-8 overall record and a 4-3 mark in the A-Sun. However, the Spartans have lost their last three conference games and look to end the skid Saturday. They did pick up a win on Wednesday, a 61-57 victory over non-conference foe Longwood. Belmont stands 7-10 overall and 4-4 in the A-Sun. The Bruins have won three of their last five league games, but lost at home to Campbell, 60-57, on Jan. 15.
Fans can follow the action live online in a variety of ways. Live audio and live statistical updates will be available for free through the official Upstate Athletics website at www.upstatespartans.com. Live video will also be available for a fee on the website on ASun.TV.
Looking Back At Longwood
Upstate trailed for most of the game, but used a late rally to storm back into the lead and take a 61-57 victory over Longwood Wednesday night in the Hodge Center. Following a 16-2 run, Longwood opened a 10-point lead, 55-45, with 6:42 to play in the game, but Upstate used tremendous defense and stormed back into the lead. The Spartans held the Lancers scoreless from the 6:41 mark until nine seconds remaining. The scoring drought allowed Upstate to make a 16-0 run to erase the deficit and build a six-point lead with 17 seconds to play. The Spartans went on for the four-point victory. Upstate shot just 19 percent from the field in the first half, but rebounded to shoot 43 percent in the second to earn the win. The Spartans also held Longwood to 1-for-14 shooting from the three-point arc. Tee'Ara Copney led all scorers with 14 points to go along with eight assists. Kendra Wallace added 13 points and six rebounds.
First year head coach Britteny Ezell has Belmont playing solid ball in the A-Sun and enters with a 7-10 overall record and a 4-4 mark in the A-Sun. The Bruins have won three of their last five games, but took a 60-57 loss to Campbell at home on Jan. 15.
Belmont has picked up league wins over Kennesaw State (home), Stetson (away), North Florida (home) and Lipscomb (home). The Bruins have lost in the conference to Mercer (home), Florida Gulf Coast (away), Jacksonville (home) and Campbell (home).
Belmont likes to keep the pace of play on the slow side, averaging 59 points per game. Opponents are scoring 64 points per outing. In conference games, however, the Bruins are scoring nearly 58 points a game and allowing 60.
Belmont shoots 37 percent from the field, 34 percent from the three-point arc and 70 percent from the free throw line. Opponents shoot 37 percent from the floor and 32 percent from the arc.
Haley Nelson is the only Belmont player to average in double figures. She tops the Bruins with 13.9 point per game, while also leading the club with 8.7 rebounds per outing and 25 blocked shots.
While Nelson leads the team in scoring, four other players average five points or more per game. Molly Ernst is second at 9.5 ppg. Shaundra Strayhorn averages 9.2 points and tops the Bruins with 87 assists and 14 steals on the year.
Wallace Second on All-Time Three-Point List, Eyes All-Time Mark
Junior sharpshooter Kendra Wallace not only surpassed second place on Upstate's all-time three-point record, she is eyeing the top spot. She currently has 158 career three-pointers for second place on the all-time list. The top spot is owned by Stephanie Feyes (2001-05). The Columbus, Ohio, native made 169 in her four-year career at Upstate. Wallace is just 11 away from the all-time mark.
Jacobs Notches First Career Double-Double
Freshman Kyana Jacobs has made steady progress learning to play the point guard position on the college level. On Monday in Jacksonville, she put it together and recorded her first career double-double with 12 points and 10 assists. The 10 assists is tied with Tee'Ara Copney (at Indiana State) for the single-game school record during the Division I era.
McMillan Tops 1,000 Career Points
Senior post player Chelsea McMillan has reached career scoring milestones of 800 and 900 points this season. With a career-high 34 points at North Florida (Jan. 15), she not only reached 1,000 points, she surpassed it. She started her collegiate career at Santa Fe Community College before transferring to Upstate as a sophomore. She is the 13th person in the history of the program to achieve the mark.
McMillan Tops 700 Career Rebounds
With 17 rebounds at North Florida (Jan. 15), senior Chelsea McMillan reached yet another statistical milestone, 700 in her career. She currently has 722 rebounds in her two and a half years in the program. She ranks fifth all-time at Upstate, 62 away from fourth on the all-time list. Yakeeshia Ross owns the top mark with 991 in her brilliant four-year career from 2002-06.
McMillan Tops A-Sun in Scoring and Rebounds
Upstate senior post player Chelsea McMillan received high praise by the A-Sun coaches when she was named the league's preseason player of the year. She is certainly living up to the hype by leading the conference in both scoring (16.8 ppg) and rebounding (11.6 rpg). She ranks second with 1.9 blocks per game. As a junior, she finished the 2009-10 season ranked fifth in scoring at 14.2 points per game and second in rebounding at 10.8 rebounds per outing en route to earning A-Sun First Team All-Conference honors.
Upstate Among A-Sun's Statistical Leaders
WIth Chelsea McMillan topping the A-Sun in scoring (16.8 ppg) and rebounding (11.6 rpg), the Spartans are well represented on the conference's statistical ranking lists. Upstate players rank eight times in the top five in several statistical categories. As a team, Upstate leads the A-Sun with 10.6 steals per game and is second in scoring (71.0 ppg).
McMillan a Double-Double Machine
Chelsea McMillan holds Upstate's record for the most double-doubles in Upstate's Division I history. She has posted double dips 30 times in her three years in the program. After posting six as a sophomore in 2008-09, she tallied 16 last season, recording a double-double in more than half of the games last season. She started the 2010-11 season with a bang, going for 17 points and a career-high 20 rebounds at Mississippi State (Nov. 12). She now has eight double dips this season and had her string of six-straight double-doubles snapped at Jacksonville (Jan. 17).
Upstate-FGCU Game Rescheduled
The basketball game between Upstate and Florida Gulf Coast which was snowed out on Jan. 10, has been rescheduled for Monday, Feb. 28 at 5:00 p.m. as part of a doubleheader. The men's game will tip at 7:30 p.m.