Women's basketball: Michigan's freshman guard among Starting Five
Every week, NCAA.com's Starting Five will bring you a look at some of the top women's basketball players in the country. Here are the standout competitors:
Kysre Gondrezick, Michigan, Freshman, Guard
One of the nation’s top newcomers, Michigan’s Kysre Gondrezick had quite the week, earning US Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) Freshman of the Week after sweeping the Big Ten Conference weekly honors.
Gondrezick tied her career highs with 22 points and seven rebounds, while hitting a career-best six 3-pointers in the Wolverines’ 80-54 victory over Northwestern on Jan. 25. She was 8-for-17 from the floor and 6-for-10 from 3-point range for her 16th game this season in double figures. She chipped in two steals on the defensive end as well in 37 minutes of action.
The Benton Harbor, Michigan, native is currently fourth nationally in 3-point field goal percentage, connecting on 51 of 107 attempts on the season (47.7 percent). She is third on the team in scoring with an average of 13.7 points per game.
Michigan, 17-5 overall and 6-2 in Big Ten play, has won nine of the last 11 games. Wolverines return to play on Feb. 1 at Illinois.
Kolby Morgan, Tulane, Junior, Guard
Tulane junior Kolby Morgan has reeled off six straight 20-plus points games for the Green Wave and led her team to two wins last week. The New Orleans native is averaging 23.8 points on 46.1 percent shooting from the field, along with 6.5 rebounds per game, during that stretch.
Morgan tallied 20 points and pulled down eight rebounds against Tulsa on Jan. 25, combining with teammate Leslie Vorpahl for 41 points as Tulane prevailed 70-65.
She then came back on Jan. 28 at Cincinnati to record her first double-double on the season, achieving career highs in points (35) and rebounds (12), in the 74-68 overtime win. Morgan scored all 12 of Tulane's points in the first quarter, then netted 10 of the Wave's 13 fourth quarter points, including a pivotal 3-point field goal with 20 seconds left in regulation. Morgan then tacked on six more points in overtime to reach her career-high. Morgan and the Green Wave return to action on Feb. 5 at home against Temple.
Kelsey Plum, Washington, Senior, Guard
Washington senior Kelsey Plum is showing no signs of letting up in her pursuit of the NCAA all-time scoring record. The nation's leading scorer moved into third on the NCAA's all-time scoring list over the weekend, scoring 66 points in a pair of games against Cal and Stanford while upping her NCAA leading scoring average to 31.3 points per game.
With 3,138 points, Plum trails No. 2 all-time scorer Brittney Griner (Baylor) by 145 points and is closing fast on Jackie Stiles' (Missouri State) NCAA-record of 3,393 points.
Against Cal on Jan. 27, Plum scored 24 points, including four 3-pointers and led the team with five assists as the Huskies won 90-67. She was also the team's second leading rebounder, pulling down seven boards.
Plum drained a career-high seven 3-pointers against Stanford on Jan. 29 and matched a season-high with 44 points for the fourth time this season, one short of her career-high. She made 17-of-27 shots and was the team's second leading rebounder with six boards. There was a stretch in the second quarter where the Poway, California, native scored 18 consecutive points for the Huskies. Despite Plum’s heroics, Stanford rallied from an 18-point first-half deficit to beat Washington, 72-68 in front of an historic crowd of 10,000 at Alaska Airlines Arena. It was the first sellout in program history and shattered the previous record of 8,408 in 2003.
Washington (20-3, 8-2) is back in action this weekend, traveling to Utah on Feb. 3 and Colorado on Feb. 5.
Ronni Williams, Florida, Senior, Forward
Ronni Williams posted the best two-game scoring total in Florida history, averaging 37 points and 8.5 rebounds as the Gators split a pair of games with Tennessee and Vanderbilt.
Florida came up short against Tennessee, 84-75, on Jan. 26 despite 31 points by Williams. The senior forward connected on 10 of 18 field goal attempts and 11 of 13 at the free-throw line.
On Jan. 29, Williams scored a career-high 43 points as the Gators beat Vanderbilt, 93-73. Williams' offensive outburst was the third-highest individual scoring total in program history, just behind the 45 points from Quientella Bonner on January 22, 1977, and the 44 by Merlakia Jones on January 25, 1995. Not only did Williams lead Sunday's scoring efforts, she collected a season- and game-high 14 rebounds, with five of those coming on the offensive end that helped the Gators to 19 second-chance points.
For the week, Williams connected on 58.5 percent of her shots from the floor, while converting 26-of-30 free throws for an 86.7 percent accuracy mark.
Williams’ 43 points against Vanderbilt were the most by an SEC player in any game this season. She leads the conference in scoring overall at 19.4 points per game and in league games only at 21.9 points. She also is among the SEC leaders in league games for field goal percentage, rebounding, defensive rebounds and freethrow percentage.
Williams and the Gators next play on the road at Texas A&M on Feb. 2.
Fans’ Choice: Camille Zimmerman, Columbia, Junior, Guard
Columbia junior Camille Zimmerman averaged 29.5 points, 13.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 2.5 steals in Columbia’s two Ivy League games.
The highlight of the week was her 37-point, 19-rebound performance in the 91-88 quadruple-overtime victory at Dartmouth on Jan. 27, the longest game in Ivy League women’s basketball history. Zimmerman set career-highs in points, rebounds and steals (4) and also broke both the Ivy League and Columbia records for field goal attempts going 11-for-37 from the field. Her 37 points rank third all-time at Columbia and 18th in Ivy League history.
The next day, Columbia traveled to first-place Harvard, where Zimmerman scored a game-high 22 points (8-22 FG) and filled up the stat sheet with eight rebounds, four assists, a block and a steal. After trailing by as many as 12 in the second half, Zimmerman gave Columbia the lead, 56-55, with a 3-pointer in the fourth quarter. Harvard went back on top by as many as five, but Zimmerman tied it back up at 68 with less than 30 seconds remaining. The Lions came up just short of their second straight victory, 70-68.
Zimmerman ranks No. 1 in the Ivy League in points per game (21.6), total points (367), rebounds per game (10.1), total rebounds (171), field goal percentage (45.5 percent, minimum 5 made per game), total field goals made (145), total field goal attempts (319), double-doubles (9) and minutes per game (37.18). In Ivy League play, Zimmerman leads the conference in points per game (25.3), total points (101), total rebounds (46), minutes per game (42.8) and is No. 2 in rebounds per game (11.5).
Nationally, Zimmerman is 12th in points per game and among the NCAA’s top 50 in rebounds, double-doubles, field goals made, field goal attempts, defensive rebounds and minutes played.
Columbia (11-6, 1-3 Ivy) returns to action Feb. 3 at Yale.