Thunderbirds Prepared for Final Non-Conference Roadtrip In Arizona

It has been exactly one week since the Lady T-Birds last competed and the team is well rested and ready to get back on the court. They will play their final two non-conference games this week as they travel to the state of Arizona to take on Grand Canyon University and the University of Arizona.

The Thunderbirds last competed on December 9 in Eugene, Oregon against the No. 9 ranked Oregon Ducks. Things didn’t go particularly well for the Lady T-Birds as the fell to the Ducks 98-38. Breanu Reid led the team in scoring, putting up 11 points and pulling down four rebounds.

The Thunderbirds moved to 1-8 on the season with the loss and have just two more non-conference games before opening conference play on December 28.

The Lady T-Birds currently lead the Big Sky Conference and are ranked 10th in the NCAA in steals, averaging 13.0 per game. Individually, Rebecca Cardenas is ranked second in the Big Sky averaging 2.9 steals per game and Skylee Doman is ranked fourth with her per game average of 2.7.

The Thunderbirds also lead the Big Sky in turnover margin (+1.89) and offensive rebounding (15.3 rpg).

Scouting Report: Grand Canyon Antelopes (3-8)

The 3-8 Antelopes will kick off a four-game homestand Monday December 18 against the Thunderbirds. After starting the season on a four-game losing streak, the Antelopes have picked up wins over Benedictine-Mesa, Florida Atlantic, and most recently Northern Arizona. Senior Brie Mobley leads GCU in most statistical categories including points per game (18.9) and rebounds per game (7.9).

The Thunderbirds and the Antelopes matched up for the first time last season in Cedar City. GCU used a strong fourth-quarter push to walk away with the 76-73 win.

Scouting Report: Arizona Wildcats (3-6)

The Wildcats come into the weekend with a 3-6 record so far in 2017. They opened the season with back-to-back wins over Iona and Utah State before losing six in row. Their other win came over New Mexico State on Thursday. Senior JaLea Bennett leads the Wildcats in scoring, averaging 16.7 ppg and freshman Sam Thomas is the leading rebounder, pulling down 8.3 boards per game.

Last season, the Thunderbirds hosted the Wildcats and held a 39-34 lead going into halftime. The Wildcats used a 43-point second half to beat the Lady T-Birds 77-65. They will host the Hawaii Rainbow Wahine on Sunday December 17 before welcoming in the T-Birds on December 20.

Monday’s game against GCU is set to tip off at 2:00 p.m. Mountain time. A live stream of the game can be found on the WAC Digital Network and live stats will be available at suutbirds.com or gculopes.com.

The Thunderbirds’ final non-conference matchup on Wednesday in Tuscon will tip at 7:00 p.m. Mountain. A live stream of the game will be available on Pac-12 Arizona and live stats are available at suutbirds.com or arizonawildcats.com.

Stay up to date during the 2017-18 Lady T-Bird Basketball season by following @SUUWBasketball on Twitter and Instagram and liking the Southern Utah Women’s Basketball page on Facebook.

Tickets for the Lady T-Birds next home game against Idaho State on January 4 are available at tbirdtickets.com or the America First Event Center Ticket Office. Fans can also purchase a Women’s Sports Pass for access to all 2018 home games.

Story By
SUU Athletics Strategic Communications

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