Women's Basketball

Mustangs Take On UCF In Orlando Thursday

Go smu! Akil Simpson
Go smu!
Akil Simpson
Go smu!

Jan. 24, 2012

Radio: KAAM 770 AM Scott Garner (Play-by-Play)
Location: Orlando, Fla. (UCF Arena)
Live stats and video available on SMUMustangs.com

Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

SMU (10-8, 3-2 C-USA) travels to Orlando, Fla., to take on UCF (9-9, 4-2 C-USA) on Thursday at 6 p.m. CT. The Mustangs have a home contest against Tulsa (8-9, 3-3 C-USA) on Sunday at 2 p.m.

UCF: The Knights are 9-9 overall, 4-2 in Conference USA. The Knights are 11th in the league in scoring offense, averaging 55.8 points per game, while allowing 58.6. Aisha Patrick leads the team and is seventh in the conference with 14.8 points per game, and Erika Jones is second in the league, averaging 10.3 rebounds per game.

Series History: The Mustangs are 6-2 all-time against the Knights, winning the last two in the series which started during the 2005-06 season. SMU won the first meeting 69-57 on Feb. 10, 2006 in Orlando, Fla. The Knights beat the Mustangs twice in the 2008-09 season, eliminating SMU from the C-USA Tournament. SMU won the 2009 C-USA Tournament in UCF Arena.

The Golden Hurricane is 8-9 overall, 3-3 in Conference USA, and Tulsa has won five of its last eight games. Taleya Mayberry leads the team and is eighth in the conference, scoring 14.8 points per game. Tiffani Couisnard grabs 8.1 rebounds per game, and Tulsa is out-rebounding opponents 41.7-36.5.

Series History: The Mustangs are 23-11 all-time against Tulsa, winning six of the last seven, including a season-sweep last season with victories of 75-56 and 66-58. SMU hasn't lost at home to Tulsa since Jan. 26, 2008 when the Golden Hurricane won 70-68. SMU won the first meeting 86-64 during the 1981-82 season.

Alisha Filmore has scored at least 10 points in seven games and scored at least 25 twice, including a career-high 29 points against TAMU-Corpus Christi...Filmore has led SMU in points four times this season...The Mustangs held their opponents to 60 points or less in the first four games and seven times this season...Christine Elliott has grabbed at least nine rebounds in six games, leading the Mustangs in rebounds 10 times this season...Akil Simpson has scored in double-figures in nine games, including a career-high 22 points against Fresno State...Simpson has posted four double-doubles, including two of the last three games...Elliott has 16 career double-doubles and Simpson has five...SMU has had at least 10 steals in eight games, with nine against TAMU-Corpus Christi...Heidi Brandenburg has made 17-of-23 shots in her last four games.

Head Coach Rhonda Rompola passed Schellas Hyndman for most wins as a head coach at SMU with the 369th win of her career on Nov. 17 with a 47-38 victory over TCU. Hyndman had 368 wins as the men's soccer head coach. Rompola currently has 376 wins. She earned the 350th win of her career with a 69-61 win over UCF on Feb. 25, 2010.

Samantha Mahnesmith has led the team in scoring six times this season, including four of the last 10, averaging 9.1 points, third on the team. Christine Elliott has grabbed a team-high rebounds in 10 games, including five of the last 10. Elliott leads the team with 7.5 rebounds per game, 10th in Conference USA, and is fourth on the team with 8.6 points per game. She is fourth in the conference, shooting 52.6-percent from the field.

Head coach Rhonda Rompola and associate head coach Lisa Dark have been together on the sidelines since Rompola took over the reins of the program 20 seasons ago. Assistant coach Deneen Parker joined the duo 16 years ago. The SMU staff has the second longest active tenure of any staff at one school. Danny Hughes joined the staff prior to the 2009-10 season and is entering his third year with the program.

Christine Elliott scored her 1,000th point on Dec. 3 against Wichita State in her hometown of Wichita, Kan., becoming the 19th player in school history to reach the milestone. The senior, who led the team with 13 points in the game, accomplished the milestone with her third field goal three minutes into the game. She now has 1,078 career points, 17th all-time at SMU, and 810 rebounds, sixth at SMU, becoming the seventh player at SMU with at least 1,000 points and 700 rebounds in a career. She needs five rebounds to climb into the top-five all-time at SMU. This season, Elliott is averaging 8.6 points and 7.5 rebounds. She scored a season-high 15 points at Kansas and grabbed a season-high 13 rebounds against TCU.

Arkansas-Little Rock was 35-4 in home non-conference games in the Jack Stephens Center, which opened seven seasons ago. The Mustangs handed the Trojans their fifth non-conference loss in the Jack Stephens Center with a 69-60 win in SMU's first road test of the 2011-12 season on Nov. 14.

The SMU women's basketball team features 10 of 12 players from the state of Texas in 2011-12. Of the players from the Lone Star State, each lists their hometown as being less than 50 miles from the SMU campus.

SMU head coach Rhonda Rompola has led the Mustangs to the NCAA Tournament seven times and the WNIT four times. The Mustangs have captured two conference tournament championships and two regular season titles under her leadership. She has coached three All-Americans, two Conference Players of the Year, two Conference Defensive Players of the Year and 30 All-Conference selections. Rompola has also been named Coach of the Year six times during her 20-year tenure.

In the past five seasons, the Mustangs have had three 20-win seasons, won a Conference USA Tournament Championship, a C-USA Regular Season title, advanced to the NCAA Tournament and made two WNIT appearances.

The SMU women's basketball team will be featured in a pair of television broadcasts during the upcoming 2011-12 season. The first televised matchup for head coach Rhonda Rompola and the Mustangs will be at home against Southern Miss at 1 p.m. (CT) Feb. 12 on the CBS Sports Network. Tip-off was originally scheduled for 2 p.m. On Feb. 19, FSN will broadcast SMU's home matchup against Rice. The game time, originally slated for 2 p.m., will be moved up to a 12 p.m. CT start.

The Mustangs are 8-1 when shooting at least 40.0-percent. When shooting 45.0-percent or higher, SMU is 4-0. In games when the Mustangs shoot a higher percentage than opponents, SMU is 8-2.

Head coach Rhonda Rompola called the 2012-13 freshmen class one of best in the history of the SMU program. The class features three players from the DFW area and an All-Arkansas selection from Little Rock, Ark. Farrin Bell averages 20 points and five rebounds per game at Richardson High School. Nia Jackson scores 13 points with eight rebounds per contest at Argyle Liberty Christian High School in Keller, Texas. Gabrielle Wilkins leads Garland High School with 17 points and eight rebounds, and Lexus Williams puts up 12 points and 10 boards at North Little Rock High School.

The Mustangs are shooting 66.9-percent, third in the conference, sinking 257-of-384 attempts. Akil Simpson has made a team-high 50 foul shots, and Alisha Filmore is fifth in the league, shooting 77.0-percent from the line. SMU went to the line 43 times against UTSA, third most in school history, making 31 free throws.

Christine Elliott has 16 career double-doubles, third among active leaders in Conference USA. This season, the senior forward posted her first double-double of the season with 10 points and 13 rebounds against TCU, and scored 15 points with 10 rebounds at Kansas. Akil Simpson posted her fourth of the season and the fifth of her career with 20 points and 13 rebounds at Marshall.

Over her last four games, Heidi Brandenburg is averaging 10.0 points per game, third on the team during the stretch.She is shooting 73.9-percent from the field. Brandenburg is 17-of-23 from the field in the last three games and scored a career-high 12 points against ECU. She is also 4-of-5 from 3-point range, and has grabbed 17 rebounds.

Akil Simpson is second on the team, averaging 10.0 points per game, and is second with 7.0 rebounds per game. She is second in the conference, shooting 53.7-percent from the field, and has made a team-high 50 free throws. In five conference games, she is averaging 12.6 points per game with 9.4 rebounds. She also has 33 steals and 28 assists.



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