March 2, 1999
KALAMAZOO -- The Western Michigan University women's basketball
team (19-9, 11-5
Mid-American Conference) lost 60-50 to Kent State in the MAC tournament semifinals on Sunday (Feb. 28) at the SeaGate Centre in Toledo, Ohio.
WMU finds out Sunday (March 7) if it will take part in the Women's National Invitational Tournament. The 32-team tournament makes its selections next Sunday. Western is hopeful it will be invited and may even host a first-round game.
What a difference
The Broncos recorded 12 more wins this season than last year, tying the 1991-92 WMU team for the best turnaround in program history. Western's improvement this season was the second best in the history of the MAC and one of the best turnarounds in the nation.
Three Broncos picked up All-MAC honors at the tournament banquet on Saturday in Toledo. Junior Shelsea Erving was named to the All-MAC first team, WMU's first such selection in three years. Senior Kelly DeLong earned all-conference honorable mention accolades and rookie Brooke Gallert picked up MAC all-freshman team honors. Head coach Ron Stewart did not receive Coach of the Year honors despite guiding the Broncos to one of the best turnarounds in the country with largely the same cast that was 10-42 the previous two seasons combined.
It was quite a week for Shelsea Erving. The Peoria, Ill., native
scored 24 points and grabbed 11 rebounds against Kent to lead
all players in both categories Sunday. Erving scored WMU's first
11 points of the second half and 18 of Western's 27 second-half
points. She has now scored 533 points this season, the second-best
total in school history.
Erving passed WMU all-time leading scorer Kina Brown, who scored 518 points in 27 games during the 1992 season. Erving's 22 points against Eastern Michigan Friday night moved her past Vicky Musky for ninth place on WMU's all-time scoring list. The junior has scored 1,219 points as a Bronco and is now just 17 points shy of leapfrogging Phyllis Cupp (1972-76) for eighth on the all-time list.
DeLong Range Bomber
Kelly DeLong broke her single-season three-point field goal record with three treys against Akron on Tuesday. DeLong has made 74 threes this season to break her previous record of 68, set during her freshman season. The senior scored 26 points against Eastern Michigan Friday, just one point shy of her personal best. DeLong did establish a career high with 11 baskets against the Eagles. She shot .500 (7-14) from three-point range against Akron and EMU last week.
The Broncos shot over .500 from the field in their back-to-back wins over Akron (.507) and Eastern Michigan (.522), marking the first time this season they had accomplished that feat. WMU has shot .500 or better from the floor four times this season ** Junior Danielle Mueller scored 16 points in 19 minutes of work off the bench against Akron on Tuesday. ** Western shot .882 (15-17) from the free throw line against Kent on Sunday to establish a new season high. That percentage is the sixth-best all-time. The Broncos did not miss a free throw until the 5:33 mark in the second half ** Senior Star Harris turned in a solid performance against Kent with 10 points and seven rebounds. ** WMU's 50 points Sunday were a season low. ** The Broncos have compiled a 26-28 overall mark and a 16-18 Mid-American Conference record in two seasons under coach Ron Stewart.
Media contact: Geoff Brown; 616 387-4138; firstname.lastname@example.org
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