Sunday, November 25, 2018

Bradley women undefeated at (4-0), one of just four NCAA teams in Illinois

Renaissance Coliseum sits empty before a practice back on November 9th.
FILE PHOTO / ALEX STAAB
Peoria, Ill. - It's still early in the women's basketball season, but the list of undefeated teams has already greatly slimmed down. Despite that, the Bradley Braves are still on that list.

Let's take it one step further, shall we? If you expand the list to Division-II, Division-III, and NAIA schools, Bradley is still just one of four schools without a loss to this point. The other three are the Northwestern Wildcats (5-0), Division-III University of Chicago (4-0), and Division-III Monmouth College (5-0).

Bradley has wins over Southeast Missouri State, Rockhurst, Delaware, and Florida Atlantic.

The (4-0) start is the first since the 2001-2002 season, when the Braves finished (9-0) in non-conference games, and (16-12) overall by season's end.

The scoring has come in a flurry so far. The high-scoring offense is currently totaling 82.7 points per game, more than fellow D-1 undefeated Northwestern (77.8).

The Braves are paced in scoring by sophomore Gabi Haack (20.0 ppg), freshman Lasha Petree (17.3 ppg) and sophomore Nyjah White (14.0 ppg).

Haack is coming off a career-high performance, hitting seven threes as just part of her 32-point game against Florida Atlantic, a win that gave the Braves the title in the Florida Atlantic Tournament, the first in-season tournament crown for Bradley since the 2008-2009 season. Petree, in a season-opening win over SEMO, had 24 points, the most by a Bradley freshman making their debut with the Braves.

The schedule won't get any easier for Bradley. Formidable opponents in the form of Western Illinois and Big Ten member Purdue are just two that comprise the remainder of the 2018 portion of games. For those that may recall, the Braves defeated Western Illinois in an 87-80 thriller last year in Renaissance Coliseum.

On the other hand, Purdue and Bradley have not met since December 30th, 1993. At that time, the Boilermakers were #17 in the country and defeated Bradley in Peoria, 69-47. Purdue leads the all-time series (4-1).

The starting lineup for the two home games thus far has remained the same: Ellisha Davis, Gabi Haack, Chelsea Brackmann, Shunseere Kent, and Nyjah White. Those five have combined for 140 of Bradley's 248 points scored.

Scoring margin is another stat that sticks out, with the Braves winning their games by an average of 23.4 points.

Bradley has made almost exactly half of its shots from the field, shooting 49.7% to be exact.

The Braves will host Eastern Illinois on Wednesday, November 28th, at 7:00 pm. Bradley has not lost a home non-conference game since December 19th of last season against Cleveland State.

Bradley Season Scorers:
Gabi Haack (60 / 20.0 ppg)
Lasha Petree (52 / 17.3 ppg)
Nyjah White (42 / 14.0 ppg)
Vanessa Markert (24 / 8.0 ppg)
Chelsea Brackmann (22 / 7.3 ppg)
Aannah Interrante (8 / 4.0 ppg)
Tatum Koenig (10 / 3.3 ppg)
Shunseere Kent (8 / 2.7 ppg)
Ellisha Davis (8 / 2.7 ppg)
Ellie Spelhaug (6 / 2.0 ppg)
Emliy Marsh (5 / 1.7 ppg)
Ryan Wilkins (2 / 0.7 ppg)
Asia Strong (1 / 0.5 ppg)

Bradley Season Statistical Leaders:
FGM | Gabi Haack & Lasha Petree (19 each)
3's M | Gabi Haack (12)
FTM | Nyjah White (12)
OReb | Gabi Haack (6)
DReb | Chelsea Brackmann (20)
Total Reb | Chelsea Brackmann (24)
Ast | Nyjah White (10)
Stl | Lasha Petree (7)
Blk | Lasha Petree (3)

This Week in Bradley Women's Basketball
Wednesday, November 28th
vs. Eastern Illinois
7:00 pm
TV | ESPN+
Radio | WIRL 1290 AM

Saturday, December 1st
vs. Oakland
1:00 pm
TV | ESPN+
Radio | WIRL 1290 AM

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