North Texas Daily

Six-game win streak puts women’s basketball back into contention

Six-game win streak puts women’s basketball back into contention

Six-game win streak puts women’s basketball back into contention
February 24
10:00 2022

At the end of January, the women’s basketball team sat in the bottom half of Conference USA’s West division after a 2-5 start to conference play.

Needing a resurgence in February, North Texas (14-10, 8-6 C-USA) has climbed the standings recently with a six-game win streak. It leaves the Mean Green tied for the division lead with the University of Southern Mississippi (16-9, 8-6 C-USA).

“I honestly don’t keep up [with standings like that],” head coach Jalie Mitchell said of her team’s rise. “I’m of the belief that if you take care of business, [business] will take care of you. As long as we keep doing what we need to do to win, it’ll work out how we want it to in the end.”

Two days after a Feb. 3 loss to the University of Texas-El Paso, North Texas defeated the University of Texas-San Antonio 70-57, sparking the team’s current six-game win streak. The Mean Green have received offensive contributions from a variety of players during the stretch.

Redshirt junior guard Quincy Noble leads the team in scoring at 14.8 points per game, but has topped North Texas’ score sheet twice the last six games. Three other players have led North Texas in scoring over the stretch, providing an offensive variety Mitchell said is an advantage.

“I think balance is key for us,” Mitchell said. “The great thing is we have a lot of weapons. […] It’s nice to look at the stat sheet and have multiple people in double figures or multiple people score [in the] last game.”

With a number of scoring threats in the team, the Mean Green have found consistency challenging for the No. 1 seed in the West. Graduate guard Aly Gamez scored 22 points versus Texas-San Antonio to start the win streak. One of the veteran players on the squad, Gamez said she attributes the team’s improvement to learning from mistakes.

“I think it started at practice, figuring out what works [and] what doesn’t,” Gamez said. “What your teammates like, what they don’t – things like that. I honestly think losing has helped us a little bit. The adversity part has helped mold us into the kind of team that we are now.”

North Texas has also seen improvement on the defensive side of the ball in the last six games. The Mean Green allowed more than 60 points in seven of their first eight games of conference play, including 80 in a conference-opening loss to Middle Tennessee State University on Jan. 9. During the team’s recent string of victories, North Texas has allowed 60 points once while surrendering an average of 51.3 points per game.

“I think everything in our defense feeds off of [a productive offense],” Noble said. “We have skillful players on the team, so everyone shows up at different times.”

The Mean Green have the chance to take outright control of the West when they face Southern Mississippi on Thursday. Winning the division for the first time in program history would grant North Texas a bye in the Conference USA tournament.

The Mean Green have turned their season around following a 2-6 start to conference play. Sitting two games above .500 in conference, the team heads into the final stretch of the season in a stronger position than it was a month ago.

“I think we all have an understanding of what we need to do better, what we need to do well, what needs to be changed,” Mitchell said. “If there’s something that needs to change, we’re all on the same page about that.”

Featured Image: Women’s basketball team plays defense during a game on Feb. 10, 2022. Photo by Kristian Freeman

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Reed Smith

Reed Smith

fall sports editor

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