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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT Birgitta Gray O: (406) 896-5917 E: birgitta.gray@msubillings.edu February 15, 2017 MSUB hosting Think Pink Night on Thursday MSUB Women’s Basketball on Facebook | MSUB Women’s Basketball on ISSUU | GNAC Standings Preview Interviews with Rylee Kane, Marissa Van Atta and head coach Kevin Woodin

Marissa Van Atta and the Yellowjackets are hosting the 11th annual Think Pink Night on Thursday.

MSUB’s annual Think Pink Night is Thursday, Feb. 16, as the Yellowjackets host No. 17 Western Washington during a doubleheader night at Alterowitz. BILLINGS, Mont. – A contest during Think Pink Night is the next test for the MSUB women’s basketball team. The 11th annual event taking place at Alterowitz kicks off a four game home stand to end the Great Northwest Athletic Conference regular season for the Yellowjackets. “We are excited to host our 11th annual PINK game on Thursday,” MSUB head coach Kevin Woodin said. “Our players always look forward to this game and it will be an exciting challenge for our team with two top-3 GNAC opponents coming in.” The women and men’s basketball teams are both at home this week. The action begins on Thursday, Feb. 16, as the Yellowjacket men’s team hosts Seattle Pacific at 5:15 p.m. followed by the women against No. 17 Western Washington


at 7:30 p.m. On Saturday, Feb. 18, the teams will flip-flop with the MSUB women’s team hosting No. 25 Simon Fraser at 5:15 p.m. followed by Senior Night for the men’s team as the ‘Jackets host Saint Martin’s at 7:30 p.m. Thursday’s Think Pink Night is sponsored by the St. Vincent Healthcare’s EVA Project. All women will be admitted free to the games of the doubleheader. T-shirts and a raffle will be available for purchase in the lobby with all proceeds returning to the EVA Project. The EVA Project is a philanthropic initiative of the St. Vincent Healthcare Foundation that provides free mammograms to women over age 40 that are uninsured or under-insured. Fans are encouraged to wear pink to the event to show their support for breast cancer awareness. The No. 17 Vikings are on a 16-game win streak with just one loss in conference play, a close road game at No. 2 Alaska Anchorage. Also coming to Alterowitz this week is No. 25 Simon Fraser. The Clan are third in the GNAC standings at 13-4 having lost their game at Western Washington on Tuesday. Last week on the road, MSUB earned a split with a 64-60 win at Western Oregon followed by a 66-54 loss at Concordia Portland. The Yellowjackets are 5-11 in the GNAC standings in a tie for eighth place. In the GNAC, three teams have secured a place in the conference tournament as Alaska Anchorage (16-0), Western Washington (16-1), and Simon Fraser (13-4) earned a place in one of six spot advancing to the conference championships taking place Mar. 2-4, in Lacey, Wash. With four games left in the regular season, the Yellowjackets are in a tie for eighth place with Central Washington. Alone in the fourth spot is Seattle Pacific at 9-7. In a 3-way tie for fifth at 7-9 is Alaska, Northwest Nazarene, and Concordia Portland. In order to secure a spot in the tournament, MSUB needs to move ahead of at least two of the teams with a two-game lead on the Yellowjackets in the next two weeks. In the first round of games against this week’s opponents, the Yellowjackets were even with Simon Fraser in the first half until the Clan charged ahead on an offensive streak. At Western Washington, MSUB played one of its most complete games of the season, holding the lead against the Vikings in the fourth quarter and falling just short in the final seconds on a big 4-point play from Taylor Peacocke. SENIOR LEADERSHIP: As the one active senior on the roster, Tiana Hanson has been an instrumental leader for the Yellowjacket squad. The 6-foot forward from Shepherd, Mont., is fourth in the GNAC in both points (16.1 pg) and rebounds (7.1 pg). Hanson is also sixth in the GNAC in free-throw percentage at 84.9 percent (124-146). Hanson was recently named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District 8 team, an honor she shares with just six previous Yellowjackets. Hanson was one of three selections from the GNAC and all five district 8 nominees move on and are eligible for Academic All-American honors to be announced Mar. 1. With a 4.00 GPA in elementary education, Hanson also led the GNAC and was named to the conference’s all-academic team. FLOOR GENERAL: Junior point guard Rylee Kane is averaging 11.7 points per game and is third in the GNAC in assists (5.4 pg). Kane finished with 24 points and nine assists last week. In career assists, Kane has accumulated 352 moving her to seventh all-time at MSUB and three back from trying No. 6 Megan Mason-Dickerson at 355. CONSISTENT VAN ATTA: Marissa Van Atta finished with 20 points and 14 rebounds for MSUB last week. The junior is averaging 9.4 points and 4.3 rebounds per game. At Concordia Portland, Van Atta was just shy of a double-double with 12 points and eight rebounds. She shot 5 for 9 from the field with a 3-pointer. In career points, Van Atta passed the 500 mark in the game at CU and has 511 at MSUB.


STARTING ROLE: Lexi Prevost provided 15 points and six rebounds last week with three assists. The junior from Sidney, Mont., had three rebounds in each game. Prevost leads the team and is 13th in the GNAC in 3-pointers made per game with 1.3 and has amassed 30 total this season. Grace Weeks had 15 points and 12 rebounds for MSUB in the two games. At WOU, Weeks added two blocks and two steals. MSUB RESERVES: Sophomore Brina Hull had five points and three rebounds for MSUB, shooting 2 for 6 at CU. Taylor Cunningham had four points and three rebounds last week. BY THE NUMBERS: MSUB is averaging 59.5 points per game and 30.3 rebounds. The ‘Jackets are shooting 37.8 percent from the field and 27.9 percent from outside. Thursday, Feb. 16 – vs Western Washington University Vikings - 7:30 p.m. Alterowitz Gym | Billings, MT | Live Stats | Live Video | Listen 2016-17 Record: 22-3, 16-1 GNAC Head Coach: Carmen Dolfo, 26th season Last Meeting: (WWU 63, MSUB 59, Jan. 21 at Whatcom CC) No. 17 Western Washington is on a 16-game win streak, including a 71-65 win over Simon Fraser on Tuesday. The Vikings have dropped just one conference game this season to No. 2 Alaska Anchorage on the road 80-69. Peacocke leads the nation in scoring at 22.9 points per game on 46.9 percent shooting from the field. She is fourth in the GNAC from the free-throw line at 86.0 percent and leads the conference in 3-point field goal percentage at 43.8 percent. The Vikings lead the GNAC from the field at 46.0 percent shooting, and from the free-throw line at 80.6 percent. They are second at holding opponents at 37.2 percent. Tia Briggs is sixth in the GNAC in rebounds at 6.6 per game and is 12th in scoring at 12.4 points per game. Kiana Gandy is just above Briggs in scoring with 12.5 points per game and leads the conference from the free-throw line at 91.9 percent (57-62). In addition to live video and stats, the game on Thursday will be broadcast on the radio at ESPN 910. All-Time Record (15-21): MSUB is behind in overall record, but does hold an 8-7 edge in games contested at Alterowitz. The two teams are even in the last six contests, 3-3. Last Game: In a close contest, MSUB took the lead, 59-57, on a jumper from Hanson with 1:51 remaining in the game. On the other end of the court, Peacocke countered with a 3-pointer and an extra point for a four-point play that gave WWU the lead. MSUB’s final shots went wide, giving the Vikings the win in Bellingham. Saturday, Feb. 18 – vs Simon Fraser University the Clan – 5:15 p.m. Alterowitz Gym | Billings, MT | Live Stats | Live Video 2016-17 Record: 22-5, 13-4 GNAC Head Coach: Bruce Langford, 16th season Last Meeting: (SFU 86, MSUB 72, Jan. 19 at Burnaby, B.C.)


This week, Simon Fraser entered the WBCA’s top-25 at No. 25 in Division II. The Clan are 13-4 in the GNAC and coming off a loss to WWU on Tuesday in Washington, 71-65. SFU led 51-46 at the start of the fourth quarter before WWU rocketed ahead, holding onto the lead for the rest of the game. The Clan are fourth in the GNAC in offensive points at 74.2 points per game. Simon Fraser is also good at protecting the ball and have a turnover margin of +4.48. Senior Meg Wilson is sixth in the GNAC in points at 14.6 per game and 10th in rebounds with 5.4. Senior point guard Ellen Kett is averaging 11.8 points per game and leads the conference in assists with 7.2. She is fifth in 3-pointers made at 2.0 per game on a GNAC third-best 41.9 percent shooting. Elisa Homer is tied with Kett in 3-pointers made per game and is 19th in shooting percentage at 33.1. Rachel Fradgley is pulling in 4.9 rebounds per game with 9.5 points. All-Time Record (8-8, 5-2 Home): With the loss earlier in the season, the Clan and MSUB are tied at 8-8 overall. The Yellowjackets are a strong 5-2 at Alterowitz. Last Game: The ‘Jackets cut a 15-point deficit down to eight in the fourth quarter, but couldn’t quite contain the SFU offense. MSUB scored above its season average in points as Hanson (19), Kane (18) and Van Atta (15) all were in doublefigures. --@MSUBSports | #JacketNation--

MSUB hosting Think Pink Night on Thursday