Unselfish offense boosts Missouri women’s basketball to victory over Evansville

Thursday, November 14, 2013 | 11:28 p.m. CST; updated 6:53 a.m. CST, Thursday, December 12, 2013
Missouri defeated Evansville 78-43 on Thursday at Mizzou Arena.

COLUMBIA — It only took ten seconds from the start of the game for Jordan Frericks to find herself in a familiar position at the free-throw line.

The freshman dribbled the ball three times, paused and shot. It was the first of five free throws Frericks would make in Missouri's 78-43 win over Evansville Thursday at Mizzou Arena. 

In her third start of the season, Frericks scored 11 points and had 13 rebounds to earn her first collegiate double-double. As a freshman forward, she’shad to acclimate to the physical play, which often results in fouls. Frericks has taken a team-high 14 free throws this season.

“For the first couple games I realized that it’s gonna be tough to go up against these big players like that,” Frericks said. “I think just through practices I’ve just developed the mentality of just going up even stronger and harder and drawing that foul so we can get to the free throw line.” 

Frericks was one of four players to score double-digit points. For the second game in a row, Bri Kulas and Morgan Stock led the team with 16 and 15 points, respectively. Freshman Sierra Michaelis made the most of her 10 minutes of playing time, scoring 10 points, including two 3-pointers. Michaelis' first shot was a three pointer, which she drilled with confidence and celebrated with a fist-pump.

“It was really, really exciting to see her have the game that she did tonight,” coach Robin Pingeton said. “I felt like she played with confidence that I’ve gotta believe is just gonna build from this game.” 

Missouri was looking to improve its shooting from the first two games, in which the Tigers shot less than 40 percent. Pingeton wasn’t making any excuses for the missed shots.

“To be honest with you it was very uncharacteristic, and we hadn’t seen that in our practices leading up to those games,” Pingeton said. “So tonight I feel like we finally were able to knock down those shots.” 

Kulas and Stock contributed seven of the team’s 15 3-pointers. Pingeton was pleased to see her team score from outside the arc and from inside the paint. She expects teams to try and take away Missouri’s three point shooting.

“Tonight it seemed like we had things going on both ends, inside and out,” Pingeton said. “I think when you’re able to do that, able to shoot the percentage we shot is just ... we’re hard to guard from that standpoint.” 

Guards Lianna Doty and Lindsey Cunningham were held scoreless but both made a difference with their passes, combining for 11 assists.

Missouri received a team-wide contribution, as Pingeton was able to use every player off the bench, something she said she loves to do when that opportunity arises. She was also impressed with the unselfish play, crediting her team with exchanging “some good shots for some great shots.”

Missouri is now 7-0 all-time against Evansville. The Tigers are scheduled to play their next game against the Southeast Missouri Redhawks on Thursday, Nov. 21.

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