Pitt State preps for Tabor College
The Gorillas will host the Blue Jays Tuesday.
RELEASE FROM PITTSBURG STATE ATHLETICS:
PITTSBURG, Kan. – The Pittsburg State University women’s basketball team will return to John Lance Arena/Whetzel Court to close out 2019 against Tabor College Tuesday (Dec. 31). Tip-off is set for 1 p.m. (CST).
The Pitt State action can be heard on ESPN 100.7 FM radio, online at espn1007.com/go or through the ESPN 100.7 or KSHQ app for phones or mobile devices.
Pitt State is 5-4 overall and 2-0 in MIAA action on the season. The Gorillas split a pair of games in their most recent action at the Florida Tech Holiday Classic Dec. 19-20 at Melbourne, Fla.
Pitt State dropped a 75-55 decision to the University of Tampa on Dec. 19 before bouncing back with a 78-62 victory against Florida Tech University the next day. The Gorillas have won three of their last four games including a pair of MIAA victories over Missouri Southern State University (Dec. 3) and Washburn University (Dec. 5).
Tabor is 7-7 on the season. The Blue Jays are 4-2 in their last six games after a 3-5 start to the season. Tabor dropped a 64-63 decision to Sterling College in its last outing on Dec. 14.
Tuesday’s action will count as a game for the Gorillas and an exhibition for the Blue Jays.
Head Coach Amanda Davied
Amanda Davied is in her second year as head coach at Pittsburg State after being hired to the position on May 21, 2018. She has a 26-13 (.667) record leading her alma mater.
Davied guided her alma mater to a berth in the 2018-19 NCAA Division II National Tournament in her debut season, becoming the first Pitt State head coach in program history to enjoy a 20-win season in year one of their tenure.
Davied, who served the previous 14 seasons as the assistant coach for her alma mater, replaced her former mentor, Lane Lord, who accepted the head coach position at NCAA Division I member University of Texas Rio Grande Valley.
As the Gorillas top assistant the previous 14 years, Davied served as the team’s recruiting coordinator and was highly involved in all aspects of the administration of the women’s basketball program.
During her tenure on the Pitt State staff (2004-present), the Gorillas have compiled a 309-173 overall record (.641), capturing an MIAA regular season title in 2017 and making six trips to the NCAA Division II National Tournament (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019) including a pair of Elite Eight appearances (2012, 2016).
Davied began her coaching career as a graduate assistant for the Gorilla women’s basketball program in the 2003-04 season, after completing a decorated playing career for Pitt State the previous season. She was hired as a full-time assistant in July 2004 by former head coach Steve High and remained to serve as the top assistant on Lord’s staff when he took over the program in April 2007.|
Tuesday’s action will be the third all-time meeting between Pitt State and Tabor. The Gorillas are 2-0 against the Blue Jays with an 80-65 victory in the most recent match-up on Dec. 28, 2018.
Pitt State’s Last Action
Tampa shot 69 percent from the field for the game to pull away for a 75-55 victory over Pitt State in day one action of the Florida Tech Holiday Classic Thursday on Dec. 19.
UT made 33 of 48 shots from the floor in the game against Pitt State. The Spartans led 23-22 after the first quarter and steadily pulled away. UT took a 42-34 lead at the break before stretching its margin to 59-47 after three quarters of play.
Athena Alvarado scored a game high 25 points to pace the Gorillas, making 12 of 19 shots from the field. She added a team-leading seven rebounds. Kaylee DaMitz (11) and Tristan Gegg (11) also scored in double figures for Pitt State.
Pitt State bounced back from a disappointing loss 24 hours earlier with a decisive 78-62 victory over Florida Tech on Dec. 20 in day two action of the FTU Holiday Classic.
Gegg scored a team leading 17 points and Maya Williams posted a double double with 12 points and 10 rebounds to pace the Gorillas. Marina Bauza Rubert, Meghan Maher and DaMitz each added nine points whle Erin Davis added eight points in the balanced Pitt State attack.
The Gorillas shot 46 percent from the field (26-56) in the game and made 10 3-pointers.
PSU at Home
Pitt State has posted a 108-26 (.806) record at John Lance Arena/Whetzel Court the past 10 seasons, including a 3-2 mark this year. The Gorillas are 68-15 (.819) at home since the start of the 2014 campaign.
Scouting the Gorillas
Pitt State has four players averaging in double figures on the young season: sophomore guard Tristan Gegg (20.2 ppg), senior forward Athena Alvarado (15.9 ppg), junior guard Maya Williams (13.2 ppg) and and sophomore guard Kaylee DaMitz (10.6 ppg).
Gegg scored a career high 28 points on back-to-back nights against OBU and SWOSU to open the season. The Altamont, Kan., native is shooting 44.6 percent from the field on the season (62-139) including 39.1 percent from 3-point range (27-69). She also is averaging 3.7 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game to date.
Gegg leads the MIAA in scoring and she ranks third in the conference in 3-point field goals (3.0 pg) and free throw percentage (31-35, .886). Gegg ranks fourth in the league in 3-point field goal percentage (.391).
Gegg averaged 8.0 points and 1.8 rebounds per game during her freshman campaign in 2018-19. She knocked down 40 of 107 3-point field goal attempts on the year (.374).
Gegg has scored 423 points in 39 career games for the Gorillas (10.8 ppg).
Alvarado is averaging 15.9 points, 8.8 rebounds and 1.1 blocked shots per game to date. For the season, Alvarado is shooting 56.0 percent from the field (61-109).
She ranks second in the MIAA in field goal percentage, ranks fifth in the league in blocked shots and rebounding and eighth in scoring.
Alvarado was named the MIAA Player of the Week on Nov. 12 for her efforts in the Gorillas’ season opening action when she averaged 19.5 points, 15.5 rebounds and 3.5 blocked shots per game in Pitt State’s first two games of the year.
The Wichita, Kan., native enjoyed a monster season debut with career highs of 31 points and 20 rebounds in the Gorillas’ 96-78 win over Oklahoma Baptist.
She battled foul trouble in the Gorillas’ last second loss to No. 20 SWOSU. Alvarado scored the go-ahead basket with 4.4 seconds remaining in the contest only to see the Lady Bulldogs win the game on a pair of free throws two seconds later. She finished the game with eight points, 11 rebounds and three blocked shots.
Alvarado contributed 10.6 points and a team-high 6.9 rebounds per game last year, earning honorable mention All-MIAA honors. She shot a team-leading 56.3 percent from the field a year ago, making 129 of 229 attempts. Alvarado also paced the team with 60 offensive rebounds and she blocked 40 shots on the season.
Alvarado has scored 834 points (8.5 ppg), grabbed 457 rebounds (4.7 rpg) and posted 111 blocked shots (1.1 bpg) in 98 career games for the Gorillas. Her 111 blocked shots rank fourth in school history.
Williams is averaging 13.2 points and 9.0 rebounds per game to date. The Carthage, Mo., native is shooting 48.3 percent from the field (43-89). She ranks fourth in the MIAA in rebounding.
Williams was named the MIAA Co-Player of the Week on Dec. 10 after averaging 14.5 points and 15.0 rebounds per game in a pair of wins vs. MSSU and WU. She scored 18 points and grabbed a career-high 16 rebounds against the Ichabods.
She also posted back-to-back double doubles against Lindenwood and Central Christian College, including a 20-point, 11-rebound effort vs. CCC.
Williams averaged a team-leading 11.9 points as well as 6.1 rebounds per game as a sophomore in 2018-19. She earned third-team All-MIAA honors last year.
Williams shot 43.0 percent from the field (119-277) and made 21 3-point field goals on the year. She also shot 76.0 percent from the free throw line, making 98 of 129 charity shots.
Williams has scored 557 points (8.3 ppg) and grabbed 297 rebounds (4.4 rpg) in 67 career games for the Gorillas.
DaMitz is contributing 10.6 points, 3.3 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game. The Skyline, Mo., native ranks second in the MIAA in assists.
DaMitz earned MIAA Freshman of the Year honors in her rookie campaign for the Gorillas last year. The Skyline, Mo., native averaged 8.9 points, 3.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game while also earning honorable mention All-MIAA recognition. She ranked second in the MIAA in assists last year.
Senior forward Meghan Maher is averaging 5.9 points per game. She enjoyed a 20-point outburst vs. Central Christian College on Nov. 16. The Raymore, Mo., native averaged 5.9 points and 2.0 rebounds per game for the Gorillas last year. She converted 42 of 101 3-point field goals (.416) on the season.
Maher has scored 517 points (5.6 ppg) and grabbed 133 rebounds (1.4 rpg) in 92 career games.
Among Pitt State’s reserves, sophomore guard Sydnee Crain is averaging 4.8 points per game, while senior forward Marina Bauza Rubert is scoring 3.6 points per game to date. Sophomore guard Erin Davis is contributing 3.3 points in four games played, while junior center Julia Johnson also is chipping in with 1.8 points and 3.3 rebounds per game.
Crain, from Girard, Kan., contributed 3.4 points and 1.4 assists per game in 12.9 minutes of action in 2018-19.
Pitt State Probable Starters
F 15 Athena Alvarado, 6-0, Sr., Wichita, Kan.
F 35 Meghan Maher, 6-0, Sr., Raymore, Mo.
G 1 Maya Williams, 5-9, Jr., Carthage, Mo.
G 2 Kaylee DaMitz, 5-4, So., Preston, Mo.
G 10 Tristan Gegg, 5-7, So., Altamont, Kan.