CHARLESTON, S.C. - The UNC Asheville women's basketball team begins a four-game road trip at Charleston Southern Thursday night at the CSU Fieldhouse beginning at 7 p.m.
Thursday's game will be audio-streamed and can be heard for free at www.uncabulldogs.com. Fans can also see the game via video-streaming for a small fee under the multimedia tag at www.uncabulldogs.com.
Both teams are searching for their first win in Big South Conference play. Asheville (2-16, 0-7 BSC) is coming off a 58-45 loss at home to Gardner-Webb on Saturday. The Lady Bucs (5-11, 0-7 BSC) lost at Radford on Saturday, 71-60.
Each team has been hit hard by injuries. The Bulldogs have lost four starters to season-ending injuries this year. The latest injury occurred when sophomore guard Shonese Jones went down with a knee injury last week and will probably miss the rest of the year. Jones was Asheville's leading scorer with a 14.5 average. CSU lost its leading scorer Rachelle Coward early in the season. She was averaging 22 points per game.
"Charleston Southern is a good basketball team that has faced some of the same challenges that we have this season," stated first-year Bulldog coach Brenda Mock Kirkpatrick. "They have had several key injuries and have adjusted their style of play to compliment their current personnel. Injuries are part of the game of course and Fred (CSU head coach Fred Applin) has done a great job in his first year with this group getting the most out of his kids.
"That is something that we are working towards here. We know that we need to maximize our potential every day in practice and in the games to give ourselves opportunities to win," added Kirkpatrick. "CSU is still very talented, and we will have to continue to play very solid defense and take care of the ball on Thursday night to make it a tight game. I have been pleased with our focus and determination in the midst of some recent adversity. I love this team and as always am looking forward to going to battle with them any opportunity we are given."
The Bulldogs continue their four-game road trip at Coastal Carolina on Saturday at 2 p.m. Asheville finishes up next week at Gardner-Webb on Jan. 31 and Presbyterian College on Feb. 2. The Blue & White's next home game will be with Charleston Southern on Feb. 7.
Senior forward Kelli Riles continues her assault on the UNC Asheville record book. Riles is averaging 10.2 points and 10.4 rebounds per game. She is coming close to being the second player in school history to have 1,000 career points and 1,000 career rebounds. Riles enters the CSU game with 939 career rebounds and 905 points. She needs 13 rebounds to move into fifth place on the Big South Conference all-time career rebounding list and surpass Megan Frazee (951) of Liberty.
Kelli Riles has seven double-doubles on the year and has posted three straight double-doubles.
UNC Asheville will try to snap a 22-game losing streak on the road tonight.
The Bulldogs have shot at least 75% from the free throw line in the last three games.
Asheville has 19 steals in the last two contests.
Brittany Gwyn has scored in double figures in the past two games.