The ACU women’s basketball team hits the road for the first time this season, traveling to Denton to participate in the North Texas Tournament. The ‘Cats face the host school on Sunday.
University of North Texas is 1-1 through two games. They opened their inaugural season in Conference USA with a win against Kansas City (77-70). From there, the Green Machine took on No. 13 ranked Texas A&M and lost 67-48.
The North Texas Green Machine is led by junior forward Briesha Wynn and junior guard BreAnna Dawkins. Each are averaging 10.5 points through their first two games. Wynn is seeing her first action on the UNT team since transferring from Texas Christian in 2012. While at TCU, she averaged 7.3 points and 4.9 rebounds. Suzzy and Lizzy Dimba will most likely be matched up on Wynn. They have both the size and athleticism to handle her. Also, their scrappy mentality and active hands could create problems for the North Texas transfer.
Meanwhile, ACU is 4-0 and has won every game by an average margin of 41 points. Their defense has been overpowering, forcing an incredible 106 turnovers already this season. These turnovers have played right into the hands of the offense, which thrives in transition.
“That has been a real strength for us. We felt like this freshman class would help us to be able to score more in transition,” head coach Goodenough said.
While the freshmen may be facilitating the run-and-gun offense, the benefactors have definitely been the upperclassmen. Sophmore Whitney West is averaging a team high of 17 points per game followed closely by senior Renata Marquez with 15.8 points per game.
When asked about her early season success, West passed the praise off to her coach.
“That’s all coach Goodenough having our intensity up in practice and preparing us for Div. I competition,” she said.
That intensity and preparation showed up Tuesday night when the Wildcats blew out Northwood University 105-44. ACU displayed a more balanced offensive attack with six ‘Cats scoring in double figures.
They will need to continue that team effort on the road if they want wins. The North Texas game will be their toughest challenge yet. When West was asked what she hopes to accomplish on the road, her answer was simple.
“Upsets. I don’t think anyone expects us to win these games,” she said.
While the ‘Cats may be the underdog, betting against a team who has already put up triple digits twice would be unwise.