Oregon's Jillian Alleyne finds way into Starting Five after big week
Jillian Alleyne, Forward, 6-foot-3, Junior, Oregon
Alleyne, a junior with four career games with at least 30 points and 20 rebounds, and six games with at least 20 points, 20 rebounds, scored 30 points and pulled down 25 rebounds while scoring the winning basket with 1.8 seconds to play as Oregon scored a 67-65 victory against UCLA on Jan. 31. The win broke a six-game losing streak for the Ducks. Oregon made it two consecutive wins on Monday, defeating Southern California 63-57 as Alleyne scored 18 points and pulled down 13 rebounds. Alleyne now leads the NCAA with 19 double-doubles this season and ranks fourth in the Pac-12 in scoring at 17.2 points per game and leads the conference in rebounding at 15.1 per game, which is second nationally behind Vicky McIntire of Oral Roberts (15.3). Alleyne has now topped 300 rebounds in each of her three seasons in Eugene. Oregon returns to action Feb. 6 at Washington State.
Lexie Brown, Guard, 5-foot-9, Sophomore, Maryland
Maryland is off to a 10-0 start in its first season as member of the Big Ten, with Brown leading the way by averaging 15.0 points and 5.7 assists in conference play. Brown led the Terrapins to their 12th and 13th consecutive wins with an outstanding week at both ends of the floor. She served as floor general of the Terps' offense that scored over 90 points in both games and led the team with averages of 20.0 points. 7.5 assists and 2.0 steals in the two wins against Iowa and Michigan. Against No. 17 Iowa, Brown scored a season-high 26 points in the 93-88 home win on Feb. 1. She scored seven of Maryland's last eight points in the final 90 seconds and came up with an important steal to seal the win. At Michigan on Jan. 29, she scored 14 points with eight assists and two steals as Maryland prevailed 91-65. Maryland, which stands at 19-2 overall, will play at Penn State on Feb. 5.
Cierra Burdick, Forward, 6-foot-2, Senior, Tennessee
Burdick doubled her average offensive output by averaging 20.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.5 steals per contest, as Tennessee extended its league-best winning streak to 16 in a row with SEC wins against Kentucky and Mississippi State. The pair of victories against top-20 opponents helped the Lady Vols improve their record to 19-3 overall and 9-0 in the SEC. It marks the first time that Tennessee is 9-0 in league play since 2010-11. Burdick shot 57.1 percent (16-of-28) from the floor, connected on her lone three-point attempt and was 7-of-10 from the free-throw line. On Sunday, Burdick scored a career-best 24 points while pulling down eight rebounds, dishing out six assists and coming up with three steals in 35 minutes to boost the Lady Vols past Mississippi State 79-67. On Jan. 29, the senior helped Tennessee end an 0-14 road skid against top-10 teams since 2008, scoring 16 points on 7-of-13 shooting, grabbing four rebounds and adding an assist in 24 minutes in the 73-72 win at Kentucky. The Lady Vols will be looking to improve to 10-0 in conference play when they travel to Florida on Feb. 8.
Ashley Clark, Guard, 5-foot-11, Junior, Tulsa
Clark averaged a team-best 17.0 points and 9.0 rebounds as Tulsa upped its winning streak to a season-best three consecutive games with wins against SMU (74-58) and UCF (70-61). She had 23 points and eight rebounds, both game-highs, off the bench in the win against UCF on Jan. 31. She opened the week with a double-double, 11 points and 10 rebounds, in the win against SMU. The Hurricane improved to 6-4 in league play with the undefeated week. Tulsa, 11-10 overall and 6-4 in American Athletic Conference play, is now fifth in the American Athletic Conference. The Hurricane will return to action on Feb. 7 at Houston.
Kelsey Minato, Guard, 5-foot-8, Junior, Army
Minato averaged 25.0 points and 4.5 assists in two wins last week, helping the Black Knights to victories against Boston University and Loyola (Md.). The junior netted 30 points, while making a program single-game-record eight three-pointers on 10 attempts during a 65-40 victory at Boston U. on Jan. 29. Minato shot 10-of-14 overall, added four assists and helped the Black Knights set a team single-game standard of 13 three-point field goals in the victory. She scored 20 points in a 62-53 road win against Loyola (Md.) on Saturday, while also tallying five assists. Minato shot 6-of-14, made a pair of three-pointers and converted all six of her free throws opposite the Greyhounds. Army (15-5, 7-3 Patriot League) is back in action on Feb. 4, when it hosts Lehigh.