TEXAS - PAN AMERICAN (2-5) AT TEXAS A&M - CORPUS CHRISTI (0-6)
THE OPENING TIP
The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi women's basketball team returns home to the American Bank Center Wednesday, Nov. 28, to face Texas - Pan American for the second time this season. The Islanders dropped the first meeting to the Broncs, 77-65, at Edinburg in the second game of the season. The Islanders are looking for their first victory of the season after dropping their first six contests, including four on the road. The Islanders have had a challenging November schedule with six games in the span of 13 days.
Head Coach Royce Chadwick is in his first year as the Islanders' Head Coach. Chadwick, who spent the previous 11 years at the helm of the Marshall University program, has 561 wins on his collegiate coaching resume.
The Islanders are coming off two tough losses in Boulder, Colo. at the Omni Hotels Classic. On Friday, the Islanders fell to host Colorado 75-48 and then dropped a 72-57 decision to Auburn in the consolation game.
The Broncs have lost three out of their last four since facing the Islanders on Nov. 13. Wednesday will mark the 28th meeting between the Islanders and Broncs, with the Islanders holding the 19-8 advantage.
•Freshman Janae Blount registered a career-high 21 points vs. Auburn to record double figures for the fifth time this season.
• Blount earned a spot on the All-Tournament team at the Omni Hotels Classic over the Thanksgiving weekend after averaging 17.0 points per game. She leads the team with 13.3 points per game, good for 11th in the SLC.
•The Islanders led at the half for the second time this season on Saturday vs. Auburn but was outscored 44-25 in the second half.
•Ashley Darley and Blount are tied for eighth in the SLC with 1.8 steals per game. Blount is sixth in 3-point goal percentage with .406.
•Marquesha Anderson-Sparks leads the SLC with a free-throw percentage of .941.
•The Islanders triggered a season-high 10 three-pointers vs. Auburn.
•Coach Chadwick has used the same starting five of Ashanti Plummer, Ashley Darley, Janae Blount, Jessica Jammer and Taryn Gregory five out of the six games this season. Darley is the only one to make starts in all six games this season.
•Texas A&M - Corpus Christi will be competing on Wednesday night for the first time this season. The Islanders have played on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday this season.
• Chadwick has a career record of 561-302 (.650) in stops at Marshall, Stephen F. Austin, Sam Houston State, Oklahoma Panhandle State and Howard Junior College.
SCOUTING THE BRONCS
The Broncs and Islanders meet for the second time this season. Texas - Pan American has notched four of the last five meetings dating back to the 2010-11 season.
The Broncs sealed a 77-65 victory in Edinburg during the first meeting this season. The Islanders led 31-23 at the half but was outscored 54-34 in the second half to drop its second game of the season. Ashley Darley scored a season-high 17 points, one shy of her career high and Janae Blount chipped in 13 points.
The last time the Broncs came to the ABC, the Islanders dropped a heartbreaker in the final 3.3 seconds. Myeisha Myles' layup and free throw with eight seconds evened the score at 56. With time winding down, UTPA's Bianca Torre dished it to Adanna Opara for the winning bucket in the paint to win.
UTPA is averaging 59.9 points per game behind Torre's 8.7 and KaeLynn Boyd's 8.4 points per game. Cassandra Moody leads the team with 7.3 rebounds per game.
The Islanders were picked to finish eighth in the Southland Conference Coaches' Poll after finishing with a 5-11 conference record last season.
BE BLUNT ABOUT IT
Freshman guard Janae Blount is leading the Islanders with 13.3 points per game in 26.5 minutes per game. She is 11th in the SLC in scoring and is sixth in 3-point goal percentage with .406. She has scored in double figures in five of the six games this season and has made starts in five of the six. The Washington, D.C. native is 15-for-18 from the line. She scored a career-high 21 points vs. Auburn and a career-high four three-pointers.
Joining Blount is freshman post Ashanti Plummer who has added some inside presence after averaging 18.1 points per game during her senior season of high school. She also pulled down 13.6 rebounds. Freshman Zenobia Winbush and junior transfer Morgan Schwartz have added height to the Islanders roster. Schwartz transferred from Midland CC where she played two seasons under head coach Ron Jones. Rounding out the newcomers is Janae Lyde who is a sophomore transfer from Texas Southern and will sit out this season due to NCAA transfer rules.
In the exhibition, Plummer led the newcomers with nine points on 3-of-12 shooting from the field. Plummer and Schwartz both pulled down five rebounds apiece.
Ashley Darley is back after sitting out last season with a medical redshirt. The redshirt junior has made starts in all six of the Islanders' games. She is second on the team with 9.0 points per game in 20.0 minutes per game. She has also chipped in 11 steals. She is tied with Blount in eighth place in the conference with 1.8 steals per game.
She recorded a season-high 17 points at UTPA and grabbed a season-high seven rebounds vs. Auburn this past weekend. She also scored 12 points in both games against Colorado and Auburn in the Omni Hotels Classic.
Joining Darley is senior Jessica Jammer who is third on the team with 6.0 points per game. She leads the team with 5.5 rebounds per game. Helping Jammer on the boards is Brandi Huff with 3.7 rebounds per game. Marquesha Anderson-Sparks leads the team and conference at the charity stripe with a .941 percentage (16-of-17).
The Islanders also return last season's conference assist leader Verne'qua Taylor and guards Alisa Roberts, Imani Dunn, Taryn Gregory, Trish Amboree and Sarah Alva, along with forward Damequia Montgomery.
Royce Chadwick is the fourth coach in Islanders' history to make his debut on the sidelines. He holds 561 wins on his collegiate coaching resume and seven NCAA Tournament bids. Chadwick is familiar with the Southland Conference after coaching stints at Stephen F. Austin and Sam Houston State. He holds a .829 career winning percentage in Southland Conference games. Chadwick was named the Southland Coach of the Year in 1997. He has 28 years of experience coaching women's college basketball and four career wins in the NCAA Tournament.
Roxanne White joins Chadwick on the sidelines as the Islanders' Associate Head Coach. White served on Chadwick's staffs at Marshall and Stephen F. Austin. White was Marshall's recruiting coordinator for all 11 years she was at the school and was the associate head coach for 10 of those seasons. The Stephen F. Austin alumna was an assistant for Chadwick for five years at SFA and also spent a year with Texas A&M.
Darren Brunson also makes his Islanders' coaching debut this season as the Islanders Assistant Coach. Brunson comes to the Island University after spending the past two years as the associate head coach and team's recruiting coordinator at Texas Southern.
Geoff Grawn joins the three of them on the sidelines and enters his 11th season on the Islanders' staff as an assistant coach.
The Islanders have had a tough November schedule with six games in 13 days, against some of the top competition around. The Islanders have faced opponents from the Big Ten, SEC, Pac 12, WAC, Ohio Valley and Great West.
The Islanders will wrap up the November schedule Friday when they travel to Austin to take on No.18-ranked Texas at 11 a.m. The game will be broadcast live on the Longhorn Network and audio will be available on GoIslanders.com