Lady Toppers look for Preseason WNIT title game birth, host Albany for semifinal matchup


History could be made tonight, as the Lady Toppers need one more win to punch their ticket to their first ever Preseason WNIT championship game. But, standing in their way, is the Albany Great Danes, who

It’s a battle of defending conference champions, as the Lady Tops (of course, defending Sun Belt tournament victors) and Albany, who won the American East a year ago, got to tonight’s matchup by defeating big-name schools, both in overtime. The Lady Tops were able to herd off the Colorado Buffaloes on Monday, lead by 30 points and 11 boards from Chastity Gooch and 20 points and a perfect day from the free throw line for Micah Jones, who powered the WKU offense. Kendall Noble lead the Tops on the glass with 14 boards as well.

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Of everyone on the floor, I was probably most impressed with freshman Tashia Brown. Granted, it was the first time I had seen her in action and I knew what the rest of the girls could do, but Tashia showed flashes of the player who can easily step up to replace Gooch or Alexis Govan, or in an even better circumstance, she develops into what Noble was last year as a freshmen, and steps up as the fourth option, so to speak, among Gooch, Govan and Noble. But, alas, I’m getting ahead of myself.

It was a great win for the Lady Tops in Colorado, but it was just a good as win for UAlbany at Penn State, who was lead by Shereesha Richards and her 27 points and 14 rebounds. And, while the Danes’ had more help in the rebounding department – Imani Tate lead the way with 15 boards and Tiana-Jo Carter joined in with 11 – but there wasn’t an awful lot of points from elsewhere on the floor, as Sarah Royals scored the second most points behind Richards with seven and three more had six.

It seems almost too obvious – put everyone on Richards. Well, maybe not everyone, but Richards certainly will have a double team on her at all times. The only problem, of course, would come if that backfires and someone else goes off for, like, 30. But let’s hope that doesn’t happen.

Anyway, I don’t see any reason why the starting line up will change from the first two games of the year:

Micah Jones – G
Tashia Brown – G
Kendall Noble – G
Alexis Govan – G/F
Chastity Gooch – F

As the old saying goes, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, and hopefully the only things the Lady Tops fix is a victory. (That doesn’t sound like a gambling reference or anything, does it?)

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