Women’s basketball preview: FAU to host Charlotte and Old Dominion

The Owls are still seeking their first conference win of the season.


Junior Malia Kency averages 9.4 points per game in conference play, the second highest on the team. Alex Rodriguez | Contributing Photographer

Hans Belot Jr., Sports Editor

Florida Atlantic women’s basketball is currently riding a nine-game losing streak, and the team will attempt to win its first conference game of the season when it takes on Charlotte and Old Dominion University.

Last week, the Owls (4-15, 0-8 Conference USA) were unable to hang on to a two-point halftime lead versus Florida International University, sending the Owls to their worst losing streak in nine years.

FAU also finds itself at the bottom of Conference USA’s standings, being the lone winless team.

Here’s what you need to know about both teams:

Charlotte 49ers:

The 49ers (15-5, 7-2 Conference USA) are tied for first in the conference and have won their games behind a balanced offense.

Charlotte ranks third out of 14 teams in Conference USA in scoring, averaging 71.2 points per game despite its 42 percent shooting.

Four players average 10 or more points for the 49ers, led by sophomore Grace Hunter’s 16 points per game. She also leads her team in rebounds with 7.3 per contest.

Charlotte also shoots the ball well from three-point territory, making about 34 percent of its attempts. The team leads the conference in assists, dishing out 16.6 per game.

The 49ers offensive fire power could be hard to stop for FAU, who currently ranks second to last in Conference USA in scoring defense. The Owls surrender 71.4 points per game and allow teams to shoot 40.9 percent from the field and 31.9 from deep.

Defensively, Charlotte limits opponents to 38.4 percent from the field and 29.4 percent from three, ranked fourth and third respectively.

Old Dominion Monarchs:

Behind the country’s number two leading scorer Jennie Simms, Old Dominion (10-10, 5-4 Conference USA) is three games better than they were at this point last season.

The senior does close to everything for the Monarchs. Along with her conference-high 24.8 points per game, Simms leads her team in assists and steals, and is second in rebounds and blocked shots.

As a team, the Monarchs average 66.9 points per game, good for seventh in the conference. They also shoot 43 percent from the field, and only 32 from deep.

On the other side of the floor, Old Dominion has not been much better, allowing 67 points per game.

Despite allowing teams to shoot only 39.2 percent from the field, the Monarchs have been unable to defend the three. They rank second to last in the conference, letting opponents make 35 percent of their attempts from deep.

The Owls have had a rough time finding the bottom of the net, scoring 63.2 points per game, which is 12th in Conference USA.

Junior Sasha Cedeno has started less than half of her team’s games this year, but the senior leads FAU in scoring with 10.3 points per game.

As a team, the Owls shoot 39.1 percent from the field and 30.3 from downtown, both ranking 12th in the conference.

The Owls will welcome Charlotte on Thursday, Feb. 2 at 7 p.m. and then they will host Old Dominion on Saturday, Feb. 4 at 3 p.m. Both games will be played at FAU Arena.

Hans Belot Jr. is the sports editor of the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him at @Don_Phenom_.