Central ready for rivalry
Claire Cox, Staff Reporter - January 23, 2013
The Central Washington University Women’s basketball team will return home to compete with two nationally ranked teams this week, taking on archrival Western Washington University tonight at 7 p.m., followed by Simon Fraser University on Saturday at 5:15 p.m.
The Wildcats swept the Alaskan teams in the GNAC this past weekend, beating Fairbanks 69-49 and then cleaning up in Anchorage 74-64.
Junior Leslie Stillar contributed 22 points, eight rebounds and eight assists in the University of Alaska Anchorage game on Saturday night. Stillar, who made her second-consecutive start for the Wildcats Saturday night, is averaging 9.1 points per game.
Another standout player this past weekend was freshman Jasmine Parker, who scored a total of 14 game points, adding nine rebounds to the Wildcats’ win over the Seawolves.
The Vikings, however, will be the real test for the Wildcats.
“Western Washington’s team is really big,” said head coach Shawn Nelson, “So we are really going to have to focus on being tough and winning the battle of rebounding and just sticking to what has made us successful the past couple games.”
The Vikings were ranked No.8 in last week’s USA Today Sports/ESPN NCAA Division II Top 25 Poll. They now hold a record of 13-2 overall and top the GNAC standings at 7-0, following their seventh consecutive victory.
Senior Viking Corinn Waltrip is the 2012-2013 GNAC pre-season all-conference pick, scoring a game- and career-high of 24 points against the Montana State University Yellowjackets this past weekend.
The Simon Fraser University Clan holds a record of 13-2 as well, with a GNAC record of 6-1 after their win Saturday night against the Seattle Pacific University Falcons. Clan senior Nayo Raincock-Ekunwe, 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 GNAC First Team All Star, was the evening’s top scorer with 20 points.
“We have really high expectations and I believe our players are really starting to get higher expectations too,” Nelson said. “That’s what you want when you’re trying to build a program. We are just taking it one game at a time and the Western Washington game is all we are really focused on right now.”