Sizzling Concordia looks to maintain first place perch in 2018

By Jake Knabel on Jan. 1, 2018 in Women's Basketball

SEWARD, Neb. – It’s time for the second-ranked Concordia University women’s basketball team to come down from the high of dethroning the No. 1-ranked team last week in Chicago. With the calendar flipped to 2018, the Bulldogs now refocus on conference play with a trip to Doane coming up on Wednesday. Then on Saturday, two GPAC powerhouses will clash inside Walz Arena when sixth-ranked Morningside makes its way to Seward.

This week’s schedule
Wednesday, Jan. 3 at Doane (6-10, 1-7), 6 p.m. CT
Saturday, Jan. 6 vs. No. 6 Morningside (13-4, 6-1), 2 p.m. CT

Both of this week’s games will be carried live by 104.9 Max Country radio. A webcast for Wednesday’s contest can be found HERE. The Concordia Sports Network will provide coverage on Saturday.

At 15-0, Concordia has equaled the longest unbeaten run to begin a season during head coach Drew Olson’s 12-year tenure with the Bulldogs. Eight victories have come against teams currently ranked in the national top 25 poll, with six occurring on the road. Sophomore Philly Lammers hasn’t seemed to mind playing against the nation’s most challenging schedule. In the win at top-ranked Saint Xavier University, the Millard West High School product recorded 22 points, 10 rebounds and two blocked shots. Meanwhile, teammate Mary Janovich has a shot at reaching 1,000 career points this week. She has tallied 968 points over 95 collegiate games.

It’s been a struggled for Doane since it opened up its season by defeating then fifth-ranked University of St. Francis and Viterbo University at Concordia’s Cattle Classic. This is the 19th season of head coach Tracee Fairbanks’ tenure. She has another senior guard to lean on in McKenna Dodd, who last week poured in a combined 60 points in games against Kansas Wesleyan University and McPherson College. The Tigers have typically played in low scoring affairs this season. They average 63.6 points and allow 66.7.

Head coach Jamie Sale has operated a monster of a program in Sioux City, Iowa. Sale led the Mustangs to national championships in 2004, 2005, 2009 and 2015. At 6-1 in conference play, Morningside sits just a game behind first place Concordia. At last week’s Briar Cliff Holiday Classic, the Mustangs pummeled No. 23 Mayville State University, 89-56, before a 78-74 loss to sixth-ranked Jamestown. Madison Braun (47.4 percent from 3-point range) and company can light it up from deep. They rank third nationally in 3-point field goal makes per game (11.2).

In next week’s action, the Bulldogs will welcome Briar Cliff (6-11, 3-4 GPAC) to town on Jan. 10 and then travel to Mount Marty (9-7, 1-7 GPAC) on Jan. 13.

Projected lineups

Concordia (15-0, 7-0)
G – MacKenzie Helman: 4.9 ppg, 3.7 apg, 2.6 rpg, 1.7 spg, .413 fg%, .400 3-pt fg%
G – Dani Hoppes: 10.1 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 1.7 apg, 1.5 spg, .401 fg%, .400 3-pt fg%
G – Mary Janovich: 8.7 ppg, 2.9 apg, 1.7 rpg, 1.6 spg, .526 fg%, .500 3-pt fg%, .800 ft%
F – Quinn Wragge: 14.2 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 2.0 apg, 1.9 spg, .622 fg%, .833 ft%
F – Philly Lammers: 13.3 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 2.7 spg, 1.7 bpg, .477 fg%, .696 ft%

Doane (6-10, 1-7)
G – Cortney Arkfeld: 8.9 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 1.1 spg, .402 fg%, .185 3-pt fg%, .660 ft%
G – McKenna Dodd: 15.7 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 2.6 apg, 2.3 spg, .393 fg%, .346 3-pt fg%, .897 ft%
G – Bailey Zarybnicky: 4.6 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 1.7 apg, 1.2 spg, .321 fg%, .286 3-pt fg%
F – Haylee Heits: 8.4 ppg, 3.9 rpg, 0.9 spg, .510 fg%, .767 ft%
F – Alea Shaner: 7.3 ppg, 3.0 rpg, .427 fg%, .577 ft%

Morningside (13-4, 6-1)
G – Madison Braun: 18.7 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 2.8 spg, 2.5 apg, .512 fg%, .474 3-pt fg%, .867 ft%
G – Grace Meyer: 2.3 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 0.6 apg, .357 fg%, .318 3-pt fg%
G – Sierra Mitchell: 12.9 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 1.6 apg, 0.9 spg, .382 fg%, .358 3-pt fg%, .885 ft%
G – Jordyn Moser: 5.6 ppg, 3.6 apg, 1.9 rpg, 1.0 spg, .463 fg%, .385 3-pt fg%, .733 ft%
F – Sydney Hupp: 13.4 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 1.3 spg, 1.0 bpg, .571 fg%, .763 ft%