DES MOINES, Iowa - The Drake women's basketball team will try for its first Missouri Valley Conference win when they host the Illinois State Redbirds tomorrow afternoon. Tip-off is 2:05 p.m. and you can listen to Ric Silvestrini and Laura Leonard on KRNT-1350AM or follow live stats at www.godrakebulldogs.com.
-Drake (5-9, 0-3 MVC) is coming off a 67-49 loss at home to Indiana State last night. Kyndal Clark (Webb City, Mo.) scored a team-high 13 points and pulled down five rebounds while Carly Grenfell scored 11 points and Morgan Reid (Kansas City, Mo.) added nine points and 10 rebounds before fouling out.
-The Bulldogs are trying to avoid its first 0-4 start in MVC play since the 2006-07 season when they dropped their first seven conference games. Drake hadn't lost an MVC home opener since 2007 when they fell to Indiana State, 84-67.
-Indiana State, which came into the game holding opponents to a conference-best 50.3 points per game held the Bulldogs to their second lowest scoring output of the season.
-The 49 points scored snapped an eight-game streak of Drake scoring 60 or more points in a game. Drake is still scoring 64.1 points per game, up from 56.1 points per game at the same point last season.
-Drake is trying to avoid its first four-game losing streak this season.
-The Bulldogs will hit the road for their next two games; first they travel south to Springfield, Mo. to face the Missouri State Bears on Saturday, Jan. 19. Tip-off has been moved to noon that day. They will wrap up their two-game road trip at Wichita State on Monday, Jan. 21 at 7:05 p.m.
ILLINOIS STATE QUICKLY
-Illinois State (10-5, 2-1 MVC) is coming off a 64-45 loss to the Creighton Bluejays last night in Omaha, Neb. The loss snapped a four-game winning streak for the Redbirds.
-The Redbirds opened MVC play with wins over Bradley and Northern Iowa at home. It's the third straight-year that the Redbirds started Valley play 2-0.
-Janae Smith is leading the Redbirds at 16.1 points per game, which ranks second in the conference. Candace Sykes is averaging 13.6 and Jamie Russell 13.3 points per game, respectively. Skyes is ninth and Russell is 11th in scoring average in the Valley.
-Illinois State is first in the MVC in rebounding margin at +5.3 and they average 41.5 rebounds per game. The Redbirds are second in the conference in free-throw shooting at 75.8 percent.
DRAKE VS ISU
Drake holds a slight advantage, 33-32, in the all-time series between the two schools. Drake and Illinois State first met on Dec. 7, 1981 in a game won by the Bulldogs, 74-53, in Des Moines. The two schools have faced each other at least twice annually since 1984. Both teams have had significant runs on each other with Drake winning 14-straight games from 1997-2004. ISU snapped that streak with a 57-54 win in Normal on Feb. 8, 2004 and has won 13 of 18 contests since. Drake is 18-12 all-time against ISU in Des Moines and defeated ISU, 56-54, in the quarterfinals of the MVC championship last season in St. Charles, Mo.
HIGH PACED OFFENSE
Drake scored a season-high 80 points in the win at Milwaukee last Saturday. The Bulldogs connected on a season-high 33 field goals and finished a season-best 51.6 percent from the floor. Four Bulldogs scored in double figures with another finishing with nine points and another with eight points against the Panthers. Drake's 37 first half points Saturday equaled its highest first-half point total of the season, which occurred against South Dakota in the opener, and its 43 second-half points Saturday against the Panthers were a season-high.
Drake finished the month of the November with a 1-4 overall record but fared better in the month of December. The Bulldogs won 4-of-6 with one loss coming in overtime at North Dakota to improve their record to 5-6.
The Bulldogs win over Saint Louis was the 715th in school history. The Drake women's basketball program first started in 1974-75 finishing 10-10 under the direction of Carol Baumgarten. The 2013-14 season will be the 40th anniversary of Drake women's basketball.
KYNDALING PART TWO
Kyndal Clark (Webb City, Mo.), a member of the 2012 MVC All-Freshmen team, is averaging a team-leading 13.3 points and two steals per game this season. In addition she is pulling down 4.6 rebounds per game and dishing out 3.3 assists per game, both marks are second on the team. The sophomore has scored in double figures in all but two games this season and along with Whitney Edie of Missouri State are the only players in the MVC to accomplish this feat.
Junior guard Alyssa Marschner (Plymouth, Minn.) has started every game this year after only playing 56 minutes all of last season. Marschner scored a career-high 16 points in the win at Milwaukee to go along with five rebounds and three assists. She is averaging 6.1 points, 4.1 rebounds and a conference leading 4.9 assists per game. Her assists per game average ranked 49th in the country going into the Indiana State game.
RISE AND FIRE
Redshirt sophomore Carly Grenfell (York, Neb.) is burning up the nets this season shooting 43 percent from the floor, which is 11th in the MVC and 39 percent from behind the three-point line, which ranks fifth in the Valley and 40th in the nation heading into the Indiana State game. Grenfell is averaging 8.8 points and 2.8 rebounds per game and has knocked down a team-high 28 threes this year.
Stephanie Running (Oak Creek, Wis.), the lone senior on the team, is shooting 49 percent (46-of-94) from the floor this season, which is tied for fourth in the MVC. Running is averaging 7.4 points and 3.6 rebounds per game.
IMPROVEMENT AT THE LINE
Junior forward Morgan Reid (Kansas City, Mo.) knocked down 10 free throws on 12 attempts, both career highs, in the loss to the Iowa Hawkeyes. The Kansas City, Mo. native is 47-of-65 (72 percent) from the charity stripe this season and her makes and attempts lead the Bulldogs. She has improved her percentage from last season in which she shot 68 percent from the line.
Two of the five newcomers on the 2012-13 roster play significant minutes off the bench this year for the Bulldogs. Freshman Ashley Bartow (Verona, Wis.) along with junior college transfer Mary Pat Specht (Shawnee, Kan.) average the most minutes played of any of the non-starters at 16.6 and 21.4, respectively. Bartow's best game was the win at Milwaukee, where the Wisconsin native scored a career-high eight points and pulled down a career-high 11 rebounds. Specht, the Bulldogs top shooter off the bench, has knocked down 19-of-56 (34 percent) behind the arc this season.
CALL THE POLICE
The Drake Bulldogs have swiped 47 steals in the last five games had 12 in each of the games against Milwaukee and Southern Illinois. Clark and Reid each swiped a career-high six steals in the wins over North Dakota State and Milwaukee, respectively.
In its win over Chicago State, Drake pulled down a season-high 58 rebounds. The total doubled Chicago State's 29 boards. Drake pulls down a league-high 30.6 defensive rebounds per game and its rebounding margin (2.9) is third in the league.
Sophomore Liza Heap (Highlands Ranch, Colo.) played her best game against South Dakota in the season opener recording career-highs in points (12) and rebounds (5) in just 28 minutes. Her previous career-high was four points. Against Iowa State, fellow sophomore forward Cara Lutes (Maplewood, Minn.) scored a career-high 19 points on 8-of-10 shooting in just 17 minutes. Lutes' previous career-high was four points.
Former University of Iowa standout and Des Moines native, Jennie Baranczyk is in her first season as head women's basketball coach at Drake University. Baranczyk is the sixth Drake women's basketball head coach in school history and comes to Drake after a two-year stint as assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at the University of Colorado. Baranczyk also served as an assistant coach at Kansas State and Marquette.
This is the first head coaching position for Baranczyk, but she brings an impressive postseason resume as a player and assistant coach, having reached postseason play every season. She also captured two Iowa high school state titles at Dowling Catholic. Baranczyk has coached in two NCAA tournaments and has won two WNIT championships as an assistant coach (Kansas State in 2006 and Marquette in 2008). At Iowa, she played in three NCAA tournaments and one WNIT and helped Iowa win the 2001 Big Ten Tournament.
With the loss to South Dakota in the opener, Carol Baumgartner, who was the program's first head coach, remains the only Drake head coach to win her debut. The Bulldogs beat the Iowa Hawkeyes, 78-65 on November 20, 1974 in the program's first ever game.
Baranczyk's first hire as head coach was retaining veteran assistant coach Allison Pohlman. Pohlman has been an assistant at Drake since the 2007-08 season. Former Chipola College head coach and Iowa native David Lane was hired as an assistant coach. Courtney Graham who coached at Holy Cross for three seasons was the final assistant hired by Baranczyk. Former Iowa State standout Kelsey Bolte is the new coordinator of basketball operations for the Bulldogs.
HIGH SCORING STAFF
Baranczyk (Iowa), Bolte (Iowa State), Pohlman (Northern Iowa) and Graham (Mississippi St.) all played Division I basketball and the four scored 4,963 points combined. Baranczyk scored 1,762 career points followed by Bolte (1,639), Pohlman (1,463) and Graham (99).
The Drake Bulldogs finished the 2011-12 season at 18-16, 9-9 MVC and lost in the first round of the WNIT to South Dakota. Drake won seven of its last eleven games to close the regular season and advanced to the postseason for the first time since the 2007-08 season. Drake won three games (Evansville, Illinois State, Wichita State) in three days to advance to the MVC tournament title game before falling to Creighton. The Bulldogs' 18 wins were the most since the 2008-09 season.
DRAKE IN SEASON-OPENERS
The loss to the Coyotes gives the Bulldogs a 23-16 overall record in 39 debut games, dating back to the program's first game on Nov. 20, 1974 - a 78-65 home victory over Iowa. Drake dropped its season opener last year at Illinois at Chicago, 61-48.
The Bulldogs will have a large hole to fill in 2012-13 with the graduation of 2012 Jackie Stiles Player of the Year, Rachael Hackbarth. Hackbarth had one of the greatest seasons in school history. In addition to the conference player of the year award she was named Honorable Mention on the Associated Press All-America team and finished her career as the tenth all-time scorer in school history with 1,161 points. She also led the entire nation with 26 double-doubles.
BULLDOGS PICKED NINTH
The Drake women's basketball team was picked to finish ninth in the Missouri Valley Conference's annual preseason poll, the conference announced Monday. Creighton received 26 of 40 first-place votes and 382 total points, out-distancing Wichita State (347). Illinois State (323), UNI (272) and Missouri State (265) followed the Bluejays to round out the top-five. Bradley (144), Indiana State (135), Southern Illinois (123), Drake (121) and Evansville (119) made up the lower half of the poll.
COACHES RADIO SHOW
The Drake Basketball Coaches' Radio Show with Jennie Baranczyk and Mark Phelps will be broadcast live from Rock Bottom, 4508 University Avenue in West Des Moines on Monday nights at 7:00 p.m. through March 4. There will be no show Monday, Jan. 21 due to the Drake at Wichita State women's basketball game that night at 7:05 p.m.
This year, Drake Women's Basketball will hold a game day event, Bulldog Breakdown, prior to each home game. One of the assistant coaches will meet with Bulldog fans in the Paul F. Morrison Room before tip-off to break down the opponent, share the game plan for that day's game, and give an inside look at the team's preparation and keys to the game. Doors to the Morrison Room will open one hour before the game, and a member of the basketball staff will share his or her comments approximately 40 minutes before tip-off. Concessions will be available for purchase (cash only) just outside the Morrison Room. Fans may continue to enjoy the pre-game excitement after the Bulldog Breakdown and are asked to make their way to their seats with 10 minutes left on the pre-game warm-up clock to get ready to cheer on your team.
The Drake Basketball Coaches' Luncheons have returned to Overtime, located at 4810 86th Street in Urbandale. The luncheon costs $12 per person and runs from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on the following dates: men's luncheons: January 22 and February 5 and women's basketball luncheons: February 19.
DRAKE HEAD COACH JENNIE BARANCZYK
Former University of Iowa standout and Des Moines native, Jennie (Lillis) Baranczyk (pronounced bah-rahn-check) was named the sixth head women's basketball coach at Drake University on April 17, 2012.
Baranczyk, 30, comes to Drake after a two-year stint as assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at the University of Colorado, where she was on the staff of head coach Linda Lappe, a former Drake assistant coach. Prior to Colorado, Baranczyk was an assistant coach for four seasons at Marquette after two seasons as an assistant coach at Kansas State.
Baranczyk helped recruit and develop numerous all-conference student-athletes at all three schools and was instrumental in Colorado securing the No. 27th-ranked 2012 recruiting class by ESPN HoopGurlz. At Colorado, she coached All-Big 12 first-team forward Brittney Spears and All-Pac-12 guard Chucky Jeffrey as well as Pac-12 all-freshman team members Lexy Kresl and Jen Reese. On the floor she has had a coaching emphasis in the development of the post player's at all three schools.
Baranczyk has reached postseason tournament play every season as a player and coach. She has coached in two NCAA tournaments and has won two WNIT championships as an assistant coach (Kansas State in 2006 and Marquette in 2008). At Iowa, she played in three NCAA tournaments and one WNIT and helped Iowa win the 2001 Big Ten Tournament.
A three-time captain at Iowa, Baranczyk, was a four-year letterwinner at forward from 2000-04 under Bluder. One of the best all-around players in Hawkeye basketball history, she was a three-time All-Big Ten Conference selection, earning first-team honors as a junior in 2003 and second-team honors as a sophomore in 2002 and as a senior in 2004.
She graduated as the only player in Iowa history in the top 10 of five major statistical categories: points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks, and is one of only two Hawkeye players to score more than 1,700 points and grab 800 rebounds.
Baranczyk graduated from Iowa in 2004 with her bachelor's degree in Communication Studies and from Kansas State with her master's degree in Counseling and Student Development in 2007. At Iowa, she was the recipient of the 2004 Big Ten Conference's Medal of Honor. First awarded in 1914, the Big Ten's oldest award is given annually to a student in the graduating class of each university that demonstrated proficiency in scholarship and athletics. Baranczyk was also a three-time Academic All-Big Ten pick, a WBCA Scholarship Award recipient, CoSIDA Academic All-District honoree, and a Collegiate Basketball Award for Excellence semifinalist as a senior in 2004.
In her prep career, she helped Dowling Catholic in Des Moines win state championships in 1998 and 2000 and she is a member of the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union Hall of Fame.
On the date of her hire, Baranczyk was the second youngest Division I head women's basketball coach.
Jennie's father, Terry played college baseball and basketball at Simpson College and her brother, Brian played college basketball at the University of Albany in New York.
Jennie and her husband, Scott Baranczyk, were married in May 2009 and have a son, Eli, who was born on May 8, 2012.