Lady Raiders Ready For A&M

Erin Grant and the Lady Raiders host Texas A&M, Wednesday.

Erin Grant and the Lady Raiders host Texas A&M, Wednesday.
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NCAA.com Wire
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Feb. 11, 2003

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#7/8 Texas Tech Lady Raiders (19-2/8-1 Big 12)
vs. Texas A&M Aggies (9-11/2-7 Big 12)

February 12, 2003 * Lubbock, Texas * 7 p.m.
United Spirit Arena (15,050)

Wednesday's Game No. 7/8 Texas Tech (19-2/8-1) hosts Texas A&M (9-11/2-7) on Wednesday, Feb. 12 at 7 p.m. It is the 55th meeting between the two schools. The game can be heard on the All Sports Radio Network as Ryan Hyatt and Crystal Boles call the game.

The Lady Raiders
Texas Tech is 19-2 on the year and 8-1 in the Big 12 after beating Iowa State, 70-48. On the year, senior Plenette Pierson leads the team in scoring with an 18.7 average followed by junior Jia Perkins at 16.4. Pierson is the top rebounder, grabbing 7.2 boards per outing. Freshman Erin Grant is shooting 52.5 percent from the field and Pierson is shooting 52 percent. Junior Miklannet Tennal is shooting 44.7 percent from three-point range, while junior Natalie Ritchie is shooting 35.6 percent. Grant has a team-high 145 assists, while Perkins leads the team in steals with 48. Sophomore Cisti Greenwalt is the top shot blocker with 60 blocks. The Lady Raiders are shooting 47.4 percent from the field, 35.5 percent from three-point range and 66.1 percent from the free throw line.

Scouting the Opponent Texas A&M enters the game with a 9-11 overall record and 2-7 in the Big 12 after losing to Colorado, 55-49, last Saturday. In that game, junior Toccara Williams scored a game-high 19 points followed by sophomore Mindy Garrison with nine. Junior Lynn Classen had nine rebounds, while Williams finished with three assists and seven steals.

On the year, Williams paces the Aggies in scoring with a 13.2 average followed by Classen at 9.5. Junior Janae Derrick is the top rebounder as she is averaging 6.3 boards per contest. Williams has team highs of 112 assists and 97 steals. Classen leads the team in blocks with 30. Texas A&M is shooting 39.2 percent from the field, 24.2 percent from three-point range and 61.7 percent from the charity stripe.

Peggie Gillom is in her sixth year at the helm of the Aggies and as a head coach with a record of 52-79.

Series Record
It is the 55th meeting between Texas Tech and Texas A&M with Tech holding a 46-8 advantage. The Lady Raiders won the first meeting this year, 77-56, on Jan. 8. Tech has won 13-straight games. The last time A&M was victorious was in a 72-68 triumph on March 9,1996 at the Southwest Conference Tournament in Dallas.

Last Time vs. Texas A&M
Jan. 8, 2003 - Plenette Pierson scored 25 points to lead No. 8 Texas Tech to a 77-56 victory over Texas A&M.

Pierson missed her first two shots of the game. But with Tech holding a 7-6 lead, the senior forward scored the Red Raiders' next 10 points. Texas Tech took a 41-21 lead at halftime, helped by Pierson's 17 points.

The nation's steal leader, Toccara Williams, had five of A&M's 14 swipes to move into second place all-time in Big 12 history. She also scored 10 points.

Jia Perkins added 20 points for Tech.

Texas A&M lost its third straight game.

Lynn Classen led four Aggies in double figures with 13 points. Natasha Summerville added 12 points and 10 rebounds coming off the bench for A&M.

A Win Wednesday Would...

  • give head coach Marsha Sharp her 499th career victory - just one shy of her 500th career win
  • give Tech a 20-2 overall record and 9-1 in the Big 12
  • give Tech its 21st 20-win season and its 14th-straight 20-win season
  • give Tech a 47-8 record against Texas A&M

    Last Time Out (AP) - Jia Perkins scored 19 points and No. 7 Texas Tech rolled to a 70- 48 victory over Iowa State on Sunday.

    Miklannet Tennal added 12 points for the Lady Raiders (19-2, 8-1 Big 12), connecting on four of five 3-pointers to soften up Iowa State's zone defense.

    After falling behind by as many as 20 points in the first half, the Cyclones (9-11, 4-5) made a push to get back in the game early in the second half. Lisa Kriener sandwiched two baskets around a driving layup by Lindsey Wilson as Iowa State pulled to 36-23 with 16:56 remaining. But the Lady Raiders answered with consecutive baskets from Natalie Ritchie and Jolee Ayers.

    A 15-footer by Perkins later in the half stretched the lead to 53-33 with 9:48 remaining. Iowa State got no closer than 17 points the rest of the way. The Lady Raiders took control midway through the first half, running off 15 unanswered points to open a 29-8 cushion with 4:44 remaining.

    Tennal hit two 3-pointers during the flurry, and Plenette Pierson added a basket and a free throw. Ayers made a baseline jumper and Casey Jackson hit a 12-footer before Perkins capped the run with a spectacular running layup.

    Iowa State got no closer than 33-17 the rest of the first half, and Tech held a 34-17 lead at halftime.

    Pierson finished with 12 points for Tech. Iowa State was led by Wilson, who had 17 points. Kriener added 10.

    A Look Ahead
    Texas Tech will travel to Baylor Feb. 15 for a 7 p.m. contest. Tech hosts Oklahoma Feb. 19 at 7:15 p.m. The Baylor and Oklahoma games will be televised in Lubbock on UPN22. The Lady Raiders hit the road for two games Feb. 22 at Oklahoma State at 7 p.m. and Feb. 26 at Nebraska with tip-off at 7:05 p.m. The Nebraska game will be televised in Lubbock on UPN22.

    Lady Raider Head Coach Marsha Sharp
    One of the most respected and well-known coaches in Texas Tech history, head coach Marsha Sharp is 498-155 in her 21st year at the helm of the Lady Raiders. Entering the 2002-03 season, Sharp was the seventh active winningest coach among Division I coaches. She has led the Lady Raiders to 15 NCAA Tournament appearances, including 13 consecutive, and nine NCAA Sweet 16 and three Elite Eight appearances and the NCAA National Championship in 1993. Sharp led the Lady Raiders to three-straight Big 12 Conference regular-season titles (1998-2000) and two tournament crowns (1998, 1999). While in the SWC, coach Sharp and the Lady Raiders never finished below third, they won or shared the last five championships, and they captured three Post-Season Classic titles.

    Sharp was also the head coach of the 2002 USA Basketball World Championship For Young Women Qualifying Team, which won the gold medal in Brazil.

    A 1974 graduate of Wayland Baptist University, Sharp was named the National Coach of the Year in 1993 and 1994. She also reaped SWC Coach of the Year honors seven times, five consecutively.

    NCAA Stats
    As of games through Feb. 10, sophomore Cisti Greenwalt ranks ninth in blocked shots per game (2.9), freshman Erin Grant is 10th (top freshman) in assists per game (6.9), and senior Plenette Pierson is 30th in scoring (18.7) among all NCAA Division I players. As a team, Texas Tech ranks third in blocked shots (7.2), sixth in won-lost percentage (90.5), seventh in scoring margin (20.1), seventh in field goal percentage defense (34.6), eighth in turnovers per game (13.9), 10th in scoring offense (78.8), 10th in field goal percentage (47.4), 16th in rebound margin (7.9) and 24th in assists per game (17.1).

    Perkins Continues Streak
    Junior Jia Perkins continues her double-figure scoring streak as she had 19 points against Iowa State. Perkins has scored in double digits in 26- straight games dating back to the Missouri game March 5, 2001.

    Career Highs for Tennal
    Junior Miklannet Tennal came off the bench and scored a career-high 12 points as she hit a career-high four three-pointers. Tennal also added a career-high three rebounds in 17 minutes of play. She finished the game 4- for-5 from the field - all three-point attempts.



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