Missouri State sophomore Jaleshia Roberson led the Lady Bears to their best shooting performance in five seasons, pouring in a career-high 32 points in MSU's 99-81 win at Oral Roberts. Her connection on eight successful three-pointers is tied for the third-best single-game total in Missouri State history. Roberson added a career-high five assists and two steals to help the Lady Bears post their best scoring effort on the road since 1992 and improve to 7-3, MSU's best start since 2003-04. For her outstanding efforts, Roberson has been named MVC Player of the Week. After leading Southern Illinois to its first victory of the season, Saluki senior Stephany Neptune is this week's Newcomer of the Week. She posted a school record 28 rebounds in SIU's 76-71 overtime win over Murray State, while also collecting 17 points, five assists, two blocks and two steals in the winning effort. Her 28 boards ranks second all-time in Missouri Valley Conference history.
STATE FARM MISSOURI VALLEY CONFERENCE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Jaleshia Roberson, Missouri State, So., G
Sophomore guard Jaleshia Roberson poured home a career-high 32 points to lead Missouri State to its best shooting performance in five seasons in a 99-81 win at Oral Roberts that capped a 2-0 week for the Lady Bears. Roberson went 12-of-19 from the floor and her eight three-pointers tied three others for the third-best single-game total in MSU history. The Kansas City native accounted for 16 points during a critical 30-15 run over an eight-minute span in the second half after ORU had pulled to within four points. Roberson sparked the run by draining three straight treys, and her triple with 8:29 left capped the spurt and handed MSU a 19-point edge that the Golden Eagles would never seriously threaten. The sophomore also recorded a season-high five assists and two steals to help MSU post its best scoring effort on the road since February 1992 and improve to 7-3, its best start since the 2003-04 season. Saturday's effort followed a 15-point effort vs. Murray State on Wednesday that included three clutch baskets down the stretch to help MSU pull out a 76-70 victory. Roberson's three-pointer with just over eight minutes to play sparked a 9-0 run and gave the Lady Bears the lead for good, and her final trey of the evening with 3:34 to go put the final nail in the Racers' coffin, pushing the MSU advantage to nine points. For the week, Roberson averaged 23.5 points, four assists and three boards in the two outings, while connecting on 11-of-18 (.611) three-pointers and 18-of-31 (.581) from the field overall.
STATE FARM MISSOURI VALLEY CONFERENCE NEWCOMER OF THE WEEK
Stephany Neptune, Southern Illinois, Sr., G/F
Saluki guard Stephany Neptune set a new Southern Illinois program record Saturday night posting 28 rebounds, 17 points, five assists, two blocks and two steals in a win over Murray State. The senior's rebound tally is second all-time in Missouri Valley Conference history. She currently ranks in the top-10 in the league in eight categories, leading the league in rebounds and defensive rebounds.
Noteworthy - In addition to the league's player and newcomer of the week selections, several conference players had notable performances, and they include:
MacKenzie Westcott, Bradley - Westcott averaged 9.0 points and 6.5 rebounds as Bradley split a pair of games in Colorado last week. She had three points, five boards, two assists and one steal in 19 minutes off the bench at Northern Colorado. Westcott matched a career-high with 15 points off the bench at Air Force and also pulled down a season-high eight rebounds to go along with two assists, two blocks and one steal in 28 minutes.
Megan Neuvirth, Creighton - Neuvirth continues to get better as the season progresses, finishing just one rebound shy of a double-double against No. 15 Oklahoma on Sunday in CU's only game of the week. The Bluejay forward led the way with 19 points, nine rebounds and four steals against the third straight nationally-ranked opponent the Bluejays have faced this December. She attempted a career-high 13 free-throws, tying a career-best by making eight shots at the line. Her nine boards moved her career total to 780 and into third place on the Creighton career rebounding chart.
Amber Wollschlager, Drake - Wollschlager scored a career-best 19 points on 7-of-12 shooting against Iowa, Sunday. The sophomore also notched career bests with five three-point field goals and 4 assists. Wollschlager paced the Bulldogs in the opening half, scoring 11 points and helping Drake to a 30-25 halftime lead. In addition, Wollschlager tallied eight points in the second half and helped Drake stretch the Hawkeye defense with her presence from three-point range.
Amy Gallagher, Evansville - Gallagher paced the Purple Aces on Saturday at Purdue with 13 points, six rebounds and four assists, against just two turnovers, in 31 minutes of action. Gallagher went 6-of-15 from the floor (40.0 percent) while also hitting her only free throw attempt of the game. The 13-point outing equaled a season-high for Gallagher, who has led UE in scoring in each of its last four games.
Ashleen Bracey, Illinois State - Bacey averaged 15.0 points and 4.5 rebounds in two Redbird wins last week. She scored 18 points, grabbed seven rebounds and had two blocks and a steal in ISU's 51-38 win over UW-Milwaukee. She followed that with 12 points in just 21 minutes in the 73-59 win over Illinois-Chicago. Bracey shot 47 percent from the field and 42 percent from three-point range over the two games. Since being held scoreless against Illinois (11/24), Bracey is averaging 16.5 points per game.
Kelsey Luna, Indiana State - Luna averaged 13.5 points over two games at the Bahamas Sunsplash Shootout last weekend, helping the Sycamores to a 1-1 record in Nassau. Luna was 9-for-10 from the free throw line and had six assists, three steals and seven rebounds. The senior paced her squad with 16 points on a trio of 3-pointers against UMKC, then reached double figures again with 11 points against SMU.
Morgan Boyd, Wichita State - Boyd had a breakout week for Wichita State, helping lead the Shockers to a 1-1 record in the Bahamas Sunsplash Shootout against SMU and UMKC. Boyd scored a career-high 26 points against the Mustangs, going 9-16 from the field, good for a 56-percent shooting effort, including a season best four three-pointers. She averaged 5.5 rebounds per contest and 2.5 blocks per game as well, helping lead WSU to victory on Sunday with a block down the stretch against the Kangaroos. Boyd shot 46-percent from the field on the weekend and was named to the 2009 Bahamas Sunsplash Shootout All-Tournament Team.
Brooke Bisping, Bradley - Bisping shot 50 percent from the field, while averaging 8.5 points and 4.5 rebounds per game off the bench in a pair of games. She collected six points, three rebounds, one assist and two steals in 25 minutes of action off the bench at Northern Colorado. Bisping entered the game at Air Force with Bradley trailing 16-14 and scored nine points to highlight a 22-5 run to end the first half. The freshman finished with 11 points and matched a season-high with six rebounds to help the Braves to a 62-45 victory.
Amber Boyd, Evansville - Boyd had a season-high seven points in 10 minutes of action on Saturday in UE's game at Purdue. Boyd, who entered Saturday's game with 10 points total on the season, went 2-for-4 from the field, including 1-of-2 from three-point range, while also connecting on both of her free throw attempts against the Boilermakers. Boyd also grabbed two rebounds on the afternoon for the Purple Aces.
Hannah Spanich, Illinois State - Spanich averaged 9.0 points, 3.0 rebounds, 3.0 steals and 2.5 blocks in two Redbird wins last week. She made her first-career start against UW-Milwaukee and turned in career-highs with four blocks and four steals. She started again at Illinois-Chicago, scoring a team-high 14 points to go along with six rebounds, two steals, one assists and one block. Spanich now leads the Redbirds with 11 steals on the season.
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