Feb 23, 2019
SETTING THE SCENE
The Cleveland State women's basketball team will look to get back in the win column on Sunday, February 24, as the Vikings travel to Northern Kentucky for their final regular season road game of the 2018-19 season. Tipoff is set for 2:00 p.m. against the Norse, with Cleveland State owning a 10-17 overall record entering Sunday's game, including a 7-9 mark in Horizon League action. NKU enters the game with an 8-17 overall record and a 7-8 mark against league opponents.
A WIN ON SUNDAY WOULD…
Snap a four-game losing streak for the Vikings…Give Cleveland State 8+ #HLWBB wins for the third straight year…Give the Vikings the season sweep over Northern Kentucky.
THE CLEVELAND STATE/NORTHERN KENTUCKY SERIES
Sunday's game will be the 10th meeting between both teams, with Cleveland State owning a 6-3 record in the overall series. The Vikings have won five straight against the Norse, including a 76-47 decision earlier this year. When playing at NKU, the Vikings own a perfect 3-0 record.
…THE FIRST TIME AROUND
In the first meeting between the two teams, Cleveland State picked up a 76-47 victory on its annual Kids Day. The Vikings shot 50-percent from the floor on the game, with four Vikings finishing in double-figures led by Mariah Miller with 21 points. As a team, CSU grabbed 11 steals, while the Vikings posted 15 assists. The Vikings also combined for eight blocked shots, including a season-high four from Savanna Crockett.
SCOUTING THE NORSE
Northern Kentucky enters Sunday's game with an 8-17 overall record on the year, including a 7-8 mark against Horizon League opponents…NKU snapped a three-game losing skid last time out, picking up a 65-62 victory over Youngstown State on a last-second three-pointer…This win moved them into sixth place in the #HLWBB standings, as they will be closing out their home slate against the Vikings on Sunday…Among Horizon League players, Taylor Clos and Molly Glick are tied for 17th averaging 9.8 points per game, while Kailey Coffey ranks fourth with 8.1 rebounds per contest.
LAST TIME OUT…
The Vikings dropped a 78-52 decision at league-leading Wright State, falling to 10-17 overall this season and 2-4 during the month of February. Savanna Crockett recorded a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds, while Mariah Miller finished with a game-high 19 points. As a team, the Vikings struggled from the floor, posting a .254 clip, while the Raiders shot 40-percent from the field.
VIKINGS IN #HLWBB PLAY
Entering the final two weeks of regular season play, Cleveland State stands at 7-9 in Horizon League action with just two games remaining on the #HLWBB schedule. Following Friday's loss at Wright State, the Vikings fell to seventh place in the league standings, but have the chance to move back to sixth place with a win against the Norse on Sunday.
CROCKETT NOTCHES 11th DOUBLE-DOUBLE
Against the Raiders last time out, freshman Savanna Crockett recorded her 11th double-double of the year, finishing with 10 points and 11 rebounds at Wright State. Crockett, who is the leading #HLWBB freshman in scoring (11th - 11.4 ppg) and rebounding (3rd - 8.8 rpg), is the only league player with 10 or more double-doubles this season. Nationally, Crockett is one of 39 players to record 11 double-doubles this year, and one of just two rookies.
VIKINGS WITH THE TAKEAWAY
Entering Sunday's game at Northern Kentucky, Cleveland State continues to lead the league in steals per game, sitting at the top of the standings with 9.4 takeaways per game. The Vikings have a league-best 253 total steals on the year - the only team with 250+ steals - and have recorded double-digit steals in 10 of 16 #HLWBB games so far this season. Individually, Mariah White ranks second averaging 2.3 steals per game, while Rachel Slaney is tied for ninth with 1.4 spg.
MILLER ON THE OFFENSIVE END
So far this season, Mariah Miller has been Cleveland State's top offensive threat, ranking second among Horizon League players averaging 15.9 points per game as one of only two players averaging 15.0+ ppg. Following her 19-point effort against Wright State, Miller has now recorded double-digit points in 23 straight games.
CROCKETT ON THE BLOCK
Entering the final stretch of regular season play, Savanna Crockett has a team-best 41 blocked shots on the year, ranking third among league players averaging 1.5 blocks per game. With at least three games left this season, Crockett is just two blocks shy of tying a CSU freshman class record and earning a spot in the top-10 in the CSU single-season record book.
…BRAXTON TRACKING THREE-POINT MARK
JaMiya Braxton also enters the final two games of regular season play tracking down a freshman class record, as she is just seven three-pointers shy of tying the previous mark. Braxton, who has a team-best 48 three-pointers so far this season, has converted three or more shots from behind-the-arc during eight games this year, including a career-high five against Detroit Mercy and Oakland in back-to-back games.
VIKINGS ON THE DEAN'S LIST
With the 2018 Fall Semester in the books, five Vikings earned a spot on the Cleveland State University Dean's List - Dana DeGraffenreid, Isabella Geraci, Isabelle Gradwell, Rachel Slaney, and Mariah White. This marks the first Dean's List honors for DeGraffenreid, Geraci, Gradwell, and Slaney, while White has earned a spot on the Dean's List every semester of her collegiate career (3).
KLEIN PART OF 2019 HALL OF FAME CLASS
On Saturday, February 16 former Cleveland State women's basketball standout Kailey Klein was inducted into the Cleveland State Athletic Hall of Fame, becoming the 11th women's basketball player to earn the distinction. Klein (2006-10) guided Cleveland State to its first Horizon League Championship in program history during the 2008-09 season, and then helped the Vikings capture a second title during the 2009-10 campaign. Klein graduated as the all-time leading scorer in program history with 2,140 points, and was a three-time All-Horizon League First Team honoree.
HEAD COACH CHRIS KIELSMEIER
The Vikings will be under the direction of first-year head coach Chris Kielsmeier during the 2018-19 campaign, as he was named the seventh head coach in program history on April 17, 2018. Kielsmeier joined the Vikings following stints at Wayne State (NE) and Howard Payne, where he became the all-time winningest coach with both programs. Kielsmeier owns a career coaching record of 426-133, which includes a Division III National Title during the 2007-08 season at Howard Payne.
2019 HORIZON LEAGUE BASKETBALL CHAMPIONSHIP
New for the 2018-19 season, the Horizon League Tournament will feature only the top eight teams, with all eight teams beginning play with a quarterfinal matchup on March 5 or March 6. The quarterfinal winners will advance to the Motor City Madness semifinals, which will be held at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Mich. on Monday, March 11. The championship game will also be held in Detroit, Mich., and will take place on Tuesday, March 12. Both the men's and women's semifinals and championship games will be held at Little Caesars Arena, and will run concurrently. All games will be carried on the ESPN network.
The Vikings will close out the regular season with a single game against Youngstown State next Saturday (March 2), hosting the Penguins at 1:00 p.m. in the Wolstein Center.