BOCA RATON, Fla. -- After two weeks and three games on the road, the Florida Atlantic University women's basketball team will return home to the Burrow on Thursday against Middle Tennessee. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.
The game will be streamed live on FAUSports.tv (subscription required) with Max Ziffer on the call and live stats will be provided during the game. Fans can also keep with the action by following @FAU_WBB on Twitter for live updates of the game.
Thursday's game will be the 23rd meeting between FAU (10-9, 4-4 C-USA) and Middle Tennessee (13-9, 5-4 C-USA). Overall, the Lady Raiders hold a 21-1 record against FAU and have won 15 straight in the series.
The Owls are off to their best start in conference play through eight games since the 2014-15 season with a 4-4 record. FAU will wrap up a tough stretch of the schedule with the preseason Conference USA favorite Middle Tennessee after taking on first-place UAB and second-place WKU in back-to-back road games. Currently, the Owls are in ninth place in the C-USA standings but have played one less one game than all but one team ahead of them.
FAU comes into the game as the conference leader in rebounds per game with an average of 44.21, which is the ninth highest mark in the nation. The Owls also are first in the league in defensive boards, averaging 30 per game, also ninth highest in the country. FAU is one of two teams in Conference USA with three players in the top 20 in the league in rebounds per game with Sasha Cedeño (7.8 rpg), Ra'Kyra Gabriel (7.5 rpg) and Raven Doyle (6.2 rpg).
The Owls are averaging 71.9 points per game and 72.4 in C-USA games this season, which is third in the leauge and the highest for an FAU team since the 2013-14 season. Cedeño leads the team in scoring and is the fifth leading scorer in the conference, averaging 17.2 points per game.
FAU features two players who have been dishing out dimes this season. Danneal Ford has maintained an average of 4.6 assists per game, fourth highest in Conference USA and Malia Kency has an average of 3.5 per game, seventh highest in the league. FAU is one of only two teams in the league with two players in the top seven in that category.
LAST TIME OUT
FAU took on reigning Conference USA champions WKU in Bowling Green last Saturday. After a highly contested and close first quarter, the Lady Toppers used a 23-0 surge in the second quarter to take a large lead into halftime. Despite the lead, the Owls kept up with WKU for the remainder of the game and even outscored the Lady Toppers, 17-13, in the final quarter.
Danneal Ford led the Owls with 22 points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals in the contest. It was the third game in the last four outings that the junior has scored 20-plus points and her ninth game scoring in double figures.
SCOUTING MIDDLE TENNESSEE
The Lady Raiders come into the game in a five-way tie for fourth place in Conference USA standings. Middle Tennessee's stout defense has held nine opponents to under 50 points this season and they are holding foes to an average of 55.1 points per game, second lowest in the league.
Alex Johnson was named the Conference USA preseason Player of the Year, but missed 11 games earlier this season with an injury. Abbey Sissom leads Middle Tennessee in scoring with a 11.9 points per game average.
The Owls will stay at home for a Saturday night matchup against North Texas. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. and as a special promotion, tickets will be only $1 for that game.
The first 250 fans in attendance on Thursday will receive a collectible Owlsley bobblehead upon entrance into FAU Arena.
Fans looking for tickets to this week's games can call the FAU Ticket Office at 1-866-FAU-OWLS or log on to fausports.com.
For complete coverage of FAU women's basketball, follow us on Twitter (@FAU_WBB), Instagram (@FAU_WBB) and Facebook (Florida Atlantic Women's Basketball).