Monday, November 29, 2010

The ACC Review


Italee Lucas, North Carolina

Why Italee: Lucas claimed Most Valuable Player honors at the 2010 Rainbow Wahine Showdown after leading North Carolina to a trio of victories. The senior from Las Vegas had a game-high 21 points, five rebounds and four assists in the quarterfinal win over Washington State, and then posted a new season-high 25 points to go with three assists in the semifinal win over Illinois. Lucas secured the MVP honors when she registered 15 points, seven assists and six rebounds in the title game win over Hawaii. Lucas had 14 assists against just six turnovers in the three games on the week and shot 52 percent from the field, 40 percent from three-point land and 88 percent from the foul line

ACC Honor roll: Florida State's Cierra Bravard had 24 points and 10 rebounds vs. Alabama and 21 points against Arizona State and was named MVP of the Junkanoo Jam's Freeport Division...Boston College's Carolyn Swords made 17 of 20 shots in two games to earn MVP honors at the Junkanoo Jam...Clemson's Sthefany Thomas averaged 17 ppg in victories over Furman and South Carolina State...Maryland's Diandra Tchatchouang notched her first career double-double (13 points, 11 rebounds) against East Carolina and made the ECU Classic all-tournament team...Miami's Morgan Stroman averaged 18 ppg and was MVP of Miami's Thanksgiving Classic...Duke's Krystal Thomas had 10 points, a career-high 14 rebounds and a career-high 8 blocks(!) to spearhead the Blue Devils past pesky Charlotte...Virginia's Chelsea Shine dropped 20 points on then-No. 17 TCU in a 59-55 Cavaliers victory...Wake Forest's Secily Ray had her first double-double of the year (19 points, 10 rebounds) in an overtime victory over Butler and made the WBCA Classic all-tournament team.


Alyssa Thomas, Maryland

Why Alyssa: The Terrapins freshman averaged 14.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists in a pair of Maryland wins that earned the team the Eighth Annual East Carolina Thanksgiving Tournament title. Thomas, who has started every game in 2010 thus far for the Terps, shot 56.5 percent from the field en route to Tournament MVP honors. In addition, she dished seven assists and led the Terrapins in scoring against Massachusetts.


We have some unfinished business to take care of before Turkey Day. Its going down @ 7pm. Clemson vs. Furman #LetsGoTigers! - Clemson coach Itoro Coleman last Tuesday prior to her first game with the team since giving birth to daughter Jasmine (7 pounds, 11 ounces) on Nov. 5. The Lady Tigers topped the Paladins 62-53.

Our MD hearts r heavy w/news of Drey Mingo's meningitis. We r all rooting for her and a full recovery. Drey is a super young lady. - Maryland coach Brenda Frese upon learning of the Purdue junior guard's illness. Mingo began her college career at Maryland.

Kids are so happy right now about to get on boat to st john island! I love to show them new things! Go jackets - Georgia Tech coach MaChelle Joseph, showing that the Yellow Jackets' trip to the Virgin Islands wasn't totally about basketball.


Snow-ballin' with the Wolfpack women

Frese frame - the Maryland coach's two Santa's helpers getting a jump on Christmas.


The ACC/Big Ten Challenge kicks off its fourth year on Wednesday and Thursday. So far the ACC has owned the series, winning at least seven of the matchups in each of the past three years. Feature matchups this year: Michigan at Florida State on Wednesday; Iowa at North Carolina and Maryland at Purdue on Thursday.


1. Duke (6-0) - Tougher-than-expected test against Charlotte - Jasmine Thomas to the rescue! - proves the Blue Devils can win with their "C" game. Not something they want to make a habit of, though. Next: Tuesday at James Madison (3-2); Thursday at Wisconsin (2-5).

2. Florida State (6-0) - Junkanoo Jam tournament MVP Cierra Bravard came up huge in victories over Alabama and Arizona State. But the Seminoles need to clean up those turnovers. Next: Wednesday vs. Michigan State (5-1).

3. North Carolina (7-0) - Tar Heels cruising through their typically mild early-season schedule. The competition ratchets up a few notches this week. Next: Thursday vs. Iowa (7-0).

4. Boston College (6-0) - Carolyn Swords continues making shots with ridiculous accuracy (74.6 FG percentage) while freshman Kristen Doherty competes as though she's been playing college ball for three years instead of three weeks. Next: Thursday vs. Penn State (6-1).

5. Maryland (5-1) - Somewhat ragged in a loss at Georgetown, but there's no shame in losing to the Hoyas, especially after seeing them convincingly handle Tennessee a few days later. Next: Thursday at Purdue (4-0).

6. Virginia (4-3) - Scored a significant victory with Saturday's 59-55 decision over then-No. 21 TCU, and the Cavaliers did it without starting guard Ariana Moorer. Next: Thursday at Ohio State (5-0).

7. Miami (5-1) - The Hurricanes haven't really been tested in their victories, and the 99 points they surrendered in a loss at Nebraska raised our eyebrows about the defense. But we love the way Riquna Williams, Shenise Johnson and now Morgan Stroman can fill it up. Next: Monday vs. Southern (2-2); Sunday vs. CSU Bakersfield (6-1).

8. Georgia Tech (4-4) - If most of these other teams played Connecticut, Tennessee and at Georgetown, they'd be hovering around .500, too. Next: Wednesday vs. Northwestern (6-0).

9. Wake Forest (5-1) - Nor sure what's more interesting, that the Deacs are averaging a robust 84.3 points a game or the fact that figure is only the fourth-best in the ACC. Next: Wednesday at Michigan (3-3).

10. Clemson (5-1) - The Tigers are off to their best start since the 2003-04 season. Next: Thursday vs. Indiana (3-3).

11. Virginia Tech (4-2) - Florida Gulf Coast and Iowa combined to make 25 3-pointers in victories over the Hokies in Cancun last week. Next: Thursday at Minnesota (4-3).

12. N.C. State (3-4) - We expected more than a 0-2 record after games at Nevada and against Minnesota, and we're sure they did too. But the Wolfpack won't finish last in the ACC, as they're struggling in areas - defense, rebounding, free throws - that can be corrected. Next: Wednesday at Illinois (3-4).

For more on ACC women's basketball, visit the conference's official site.

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