The Lady Toppers (3-0) will meet Duke tomorrow in the Caribbean Challenge in Cancun, Mexico.
The Blue Devils (3-1) are coming off a 57-44 win over UNC Charlotte at home on Monday and are ranked No. 10 in the latest Associated Press Top 25 poll. A few game notes:
-Duke has four players who average double figures in scoring. The Blue Devils are led by junior guard Jasmine Thomas’ 13.5 points per game.
-Jasmine Thomas, senior guard Bridgette Mitchell, senior forward Joy Cheek and junior center Krystal Thomas are all averaging at least 10 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.
-Duke’s lone misstep so far this season was a 95-77 road loss to No. 11 Texas A&M. The Aggies are off to a 3-0 start.
-The Blue Devils will look to utilize a dominant inside game. They are only shooting 20 percent from three-point range on the season, but they are shooting 49.8 percent from inside the arc and averaging 51.2 rebounds per game.
-Senior forward Arnika Brown is averaging 12.7 points and 13 rebounds per game this season. She had 15 points and 13 rebounds in Western’s 59-56 loss to Duke last year in Diddle Arena.
-Junior guard Amy McNear was named the Sun Belt Conference Player of the Week on Tuesday. McNear scored a career-high 28 points at South Dakota State on Sunday and is leading the team with 18.3 points per game. She’s also averaging 5.7 assists and four rebounds per game.
-Head Coach Mary Taylor Cowles said that the Lady Toppers cannot become too intimidated by the reputation of Duke, or the team’s Friday opponent, Arkansas.
“They’re not the teams that they are for nothing,” Cowles said. “They’re going to be very, very good, and it’s going to be a great environment to be in for women’s basketball. We’re just looking forward to the fact that we’re going there 3-0, and we’ll get ourselves ready to play by Thursday afternoon.”
The Lady Toppers will tip off at 5 p.m. CST tomorrow. Visit wkuherald.com after the game for a recap.