CASTLETON, Vt. – The Castleton University women's basketball team brings a six-game winning streak into the final week of the regular season as it travels to Lyndon State Thursday, Feb. 16, for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff before hosting Johnson State Saturday, Feb. 18, at 3 p.m.
The Spartans, 15-8 overall, are currently in second place in the NAC standings at 13-3, one game behind Husson and one-and-a-half games ahead of New England College and Colby-Sawyer, who face each other Saturday. Castleton is looking to wrap up at least a bye into the NAC Tournament semifinals next weekend.
After three straight games of scoring at least 24 points, Amanda Beatty has taken over the team lead in scoring average at 13.0 points per game, just ahead of Makayla Farrara's 12.9 points per game. Castleton's defense remains one of the best in the country, as the Spartans are fourth in Division III in field goal percentage defense (.301), sixth in scoring defense (46.6 ppg), and eighth in three-point field goal percentage defense (.235).
Lyndon State is 10-12 overall and 7-9 within the conference, tied with Johnson State for sixth place in the league standings. The Hornets have won three straight games, including a 57-49 win over Johnson State last Saturday. As a team, Lyndon State is scoring 60.1 points per game and shooting 34.7 percent from the field, including 29.4 percent from behind the three-point line, and 69.0 percent from the free throw line.
Mikayla Hodge leads the NAC in rebounding and blocked shots and is second in the league in scoring, averaging 17.0 points, 13.0 rebounds, and 2.4 blocks per game. Gabrielle Foy is averaging 14.5 points per game, and Alissa Mitchell is contributing 6.7 points, 6.2 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 2.7 steals, and 1.3 blocked shots per game.
On Dec. 10 in Castleton, all five Spartan starters scored in double figures as Castleton defeated Lyndon State, 80-48. Taylor Raiche went 8-for-8 from the field as she finished with 17 points and six rebounds, while Lindsay Sabo dished out eight assists to go along with 10 points. Mariah Ramos led the Hornets with 15 points, and Hodge collected 11 points, nine rebounds, and two blocked shots.
Johnson State enters the weekend with an 11-12 overall record after defeating Plymouth State this past Monday, 65-57. The Badgers are 7-9 in the NAC, but they did defeat Husson two weeks ago, 80-70. Johnson State is scoring 60.7 points per game and shooting 35.8 percent from the field, including 25.4 percent from behind the three-point line, and 59.9 percent from the free throw line.
Kasey DeGreenia is also averaging a double-double with 12.5 points and 11.3 rebounds per game. Domonique Carter-Stanley is averaging 11.9 points, 3.3 assists, and 3.1 steals per game, Sarah Voorhis is contributing 9.7 points and 6.3 rebounds per game, and Ashley Goddard is averaging 9.6 points and 6.9 rebounds per game.
Johnson State handed Castleton its first loss of the season, 61-59, on Dec. 8 in Johnson, Vt. The Spartans lost despite 29 points from Farrara, as Voorhis notched a double-double for the Badgers with 13 points and 10 rebounds while DeGreenia and Carter-Stanley scored 12 points apiece.
Before the Johnson State game, Castleton will honor seniors Lindsay Sabo and Lacey Stever. Sabo enters the weekend with 784 career points and 162 made three-pointers, sixth on the Castleton all-time list for made three-pointers. Stever appeared in 14 games during the 2015-16 season before transitioning into the role of student assistant coach this season.