March 8, 2012
The fourth-seeded Flames notched its first Horizon League Tournament win since the 2006-07 season this past Wednesday in a 66-53 victory over No. 5 seed Butler inside the UIC pavilion. The Flames advance to the semifinals where they will meet nationally-ranked and No. 1 seed Green Bay for rights to the conference championship game. The last time these two squads met in the postseason, UIC defeated the Phoenix by a final of 74-62, which was in the semifinals of the 2005-06 season.
In Wednesday's wins over Butler, senior Jasmine Bailey became just the second player in school history to record over 1,500 points and 1,000 rebounds (Angela Gilbert, 1989-93). She needed only two boards and three points prior to the start of the contest and reached the milestone with 14 seconds left in the first half. Bailey is just the second player in the conference to eclipse both marks since the inception of the Horizon League in 2001 (Traci Edwards, UWM, 2005-09).
The 2011-12 UIC women's basketball team currently owns 18 wins which ties for the second-most victories in program history. If the Flames manage to defeat Green Bay on Friday night then they will move into a two-way tie for most wins in school history with 19. That mark was set in the 2006-07 season as UIC finished the year 19-13 and accepted an invitation to the WNIT, the program's lone national postseason tournament appearance.
With 18 wins so far this season, UIC head coach Regina Miller has set a new program record for most victories by a first-year mentor. The original mark was set by Lisa Ryckbosch back in the 2002-03 season as that year's squad finished 17-11. The 18-win tally is also Miller's highest mark in her first season at a new school as she recorded 17 wins in her initial year at UNLV and three at Western Illinois.
Seniors Jasmine Bailey and Shamiea Green were recently honored with All-Horizon League distinctions as Bailey garnered first-team honors and Green earned second-team laurels. Bailey was also placed on the Horizon League's All-Defensive team, making it three straight years that a Flames' player has earned the honor. Bailey became the first UIC player on a postseason first-team since LaShonda Grant in 2006-07. The Flames were one of just three conference schools (GB and WSU) to claim two players on either squad.
Senior Jasmine Bailey continues to move up on several of UIC's single-season performance lists. She currently ranks seventh in scoring with 526 points, seventh in boards with 293, sixth in assists with 129 and ninth in steals with 75. Bailey also sits fifth in made free throws (139) and ninth in made field goals (177).
Statistically speaking, UIC senior forward Jasmine Bailey is arguably one of the best players in the country. According to the latest NCAA stat report, she ranks 46th in the nation in scoring (17.6), 35th in rebounding (9.8), 70th in assists per game (4.3) and 63rd in steals (2.5). Among the Horizon League contingent, Bailey is the only player to rank in the top-five in scoring (4th), rebounding (5th), assists (2nd) and steals (4th).
In the win over Cleveland State, seniors Jasmine Bailey and Shamiea Green became UIC's highest scoring duo, surpassing the mark of 2,635 left by LaShonda Grant (2003-06) and Chrissy Dizon (2002-06). Bailey (1,512) and Green (1,330), the league's top-active scoring tandem, now have a combined total of 2,842 points and rank fourth and eighth, respectivley, on the career leaderboard.
Most Improved Award
Senior Kiara Strickland has certainly saved her best for last as she has transformed from a modest reserve to a one of the league's top players. In her first three seasons, Strickland averaged just over 13 minutes and 3.2 points per game with a mere eight starts. This year she averages 35.6 minutes and 11.9 points per contest and has started all 29 games. The Minneapolis native set career highs in points (26) and rebounds (14) this year.
Green Shines from the Line
Senior Shamiea Green has been a consistent force from the foul line this season and throughout her career. Green ranks first among Horizon League players and 47th in the country with an 83.7 percent shooting clip (82-98) and currently sits third on UIC's single season top performances list. Her career mark of 77.5 percent (282-364) places her fifth all-time, a top-5 group that has not been breached in nine years.
Senior Jasmine Bailey is without question one of the best players in program history as indicated by her career figures. Bailey currently ranks fourth all-time in scoring (1,512), third in rebounding (1,011), tied-for-forth in steals (257), seventh in blocks (72) and eighth in assists (318). She stands as the only player in school annals to record over 1,000 points, 800 rebounds, 300 assists and 200 steals.
What About Green?
Senior Shamiea Green has her name scattered all over UIC's career leaderboards even though she missed almost 25 percent of the season early on due to a knee injury. Green currently ranks eighth all-time in scoring (1,330), seventh in three-point field goals (120), fifth in free throw percentage (.775) and 10th in assists (311).
The 2011-12 Flames have been recognized as a team that can bang the boards and the stats prove it. UIC ranks first in the conference and 33rd in the nation in rebounding margin at +6.0. They also rank first in the HL in rebounding defense, limiting their opponents to a mere 32.8 boards per game. The Flames pace the conference in offensive rebounds with 14.2 per outing and offensive rebounding percentage with a 39.7% mark.
Junior Taylor Foulks has stated her claim to being one of the best three-point shooters in Flames history...and she's only a junior. Currently she ranks fifth on the all-time made threes list with 174, needing just 64 more equal the top mark of 238. Last season Foulks tallied 65 deep bombs which stands as the fourth-highest single season total in program history. Earlier this year at YSU, Foulks drilled 7-of-8 from behind the arc to post a shooting clip of 87.5 percent, which ranks tied-for-seventh among all NCAA single-game performances this season.
Seniors Jasmine Bailey and Shamiea Green have each surpassed the 1,000 career-point mark this season. Bailey reached the four-digit milestone in the first game of the year against Drake on Nov. 12, while Green accomplished the feat against Eastern Illinois on Dec. 22 after missing seven games due to a knee injury. The duo is believed to be the only former prep teammates in NCAA history to reach 1,000 career points for the same team in the same season.