#6 UM/#11 FGCU NCAA TOURNAMENT 1ST ROUND PREVIEW

San Antonio, TX- #11 seed and #21/#24 FGCU (26-2) faces the #6 seed and #14/#16 University of Michigan (16-5), Sunday afternoon at 3 PM from the UTSA Convocation Center.

FGCU Stats (Regular Season and ASUN Tournament):

FGCU averages 82.1 ppg, shoots 45.4.% (825/1817) from the field, and 33.4% (334/1001) from beyond the arc. The Eagles average 37.4 team rebounds per game. FGCU dishes out 17.1 assists, 10.1 steals, and 3.4 blocks per game. The Eagles average 11.3 team turnovers per game.

UM STATS (Regular Season and Big 10 Conference Tournament):

UM averages 75.0 ppg, shoots 44.7% (515/1151) from the field, and 29.4% (96/326) from beyond the arc. The Wolverines average 42.7 team rebounds per game. UM dishes out 15.7 assists, 5.2 steals, and 2.6 blocks per game. The Wolverines average 15.6 team turnovers per game.

Players To Watch For (FGCU):

6’1 SO G Kierstan Bell 24.3 ppg, 10.8 rpg

ACCOLADES:

-Wade Trophy Midseason watch list, Becky Hammon Mid-Major Player of the Year Semifinalist

-NCAA.com’s starting 5

-Six time ASUN Player of the Week

-Ten time ASUN Newcomer of the Week

-ASUN Player of the Year (unanimous)

-ASUN Newcomer of the Year (unanimous)

-First team All ASUN (unanimous)

-ASUN Tournament MVP

-ASUN All-Tournament Team

5’3 JR G TK Morehouse 17.7 ppg

ACCOLADES:

-First team ALL-ASUN (unanimous)

-ASUN Player of the Week (11/30)

-Two time ASUN Newcomer of the Week

-ASUN All Tournament Team

-Gulf Coast Showcase All-Tournament Team

5’6 SO G Aaliyah Stanley 9.7 ppg

ACCOLADES:

-ASUN All-Tournament Team

Players To Watch For (UM):

6’2 JR F Naz Hillmon 25.0 ppg, 11.4 rpg

ACCOLADES:

-Named the Big Ten Preseason Co-Player of the Year by the coaches and was selected to the Preseason All-Big Ten Team by the coaches and media.

-Named to watch lists for the Katrina McClain Award, Naismith Trophy, and Wade Trophy.

-Named Big Ten Player of the Week three times (Nov 30, Jan 11, Jan 25), the ESPNW Player of the Week (Jan 11), and WBCA Ann Meyers Drysdale Player of the Week (Jan 12)

-Started all 11 games, recording at least 18 pts in 10 games and eight double-doubles.

-Set a Michigan record (men and women) for points scored in a game with 50 pts and 16 rebounds at #17 Ohio State (Jan 21), becoming the first player in the NCAA this season with a 50-point game.

-Recorded the nation’s second 30-20 game of the 2020-21 season with 35 pts and a career best 22 rebounds against Nebraska (Jan 7)

6’1 JR G/F Leigha Brown 16.9 ppg

ACCOLADES:

-Named Big Ten Player of the Week (Jan 4) for the first time in her career.

-Jad a season high 26 pts on 9/14 shooting with three boards and three assists against Wisconsin.

6’0 GR G Akienreh Johnson 10.8 ppg

Overview:

FGCU gets a tough task in the #6 University of Michigan, the Wolverines finished 4th in the Big 10 in the regular season, and lost to Northwestern in the Big 10 semifinals. 6’2 JR F Naz Hillmon is one of the best players in the country and it will be fun to watch her matchup against Kierstan Bell. She averages 25.0 ppg and is the key to a Wolverines win.

The Wolverines starting five, is all 6’0 or taller, so there will be matchups UM will try to exploit, but the Eagles are super athletic, so we will see what the X’s and O’s look like for Head Coach Karl Smesko. The Eagles also have made 334 3’s while attempting 1001, while UM has only made 93 3’s while attempting 326. FGCU is upset minded and we can’t wait til Sunday afternoon.

Prediction:

#11 FGCU 79 #6 UM 73

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