ARLINGTON, Texas – Entering a three-game homestand with a three-game winning streak, UT Arlington looks to remain hot when it hosts Appalachian State at College Park Center on Saturday night.
The Lady Mavericks (11-11, 6-6 Sun Belt) have been one of the hottest teams in the Sun Belt of late, finishing off its longest true road trip since 1990-91 with a 4-1 record – tying the best five-game trip in program history. UTA has not allowed an opponent to reach 50 in its last three games, outscoring the opponent 207-134 during the stretch.
Appalachian State enters on a high since the teams last met – a 76-45 UTA win in January. The Mountaineers are 3-2 in their last five games, including two wins against teams in the top half of the SBC standings.
“They are playing really well and it is their coaches second year to coach them, they are slowly getting into her routine,” UT Arlington coach Krista Gerlich said. “They are a different team than what we play at the beginning of the season. We are going to have to continue our momentum and keep doing what we have been doing.”
Sophomore Rebekah VanDijk helped lift UTA to victory against Texas State on Tuesday with a career performance. VanDijk had a career-high 26 points on the way to earning her ninth double-double of the season. The Nazareth, Texas native is averaging 15.4 points per game over the last five games.
In practice, Gerlich has kept the focus on getting better on a daily basis, hoping that the team’s stretch it encountered in the last homestand is long gone.
“That is what you want, you want to win those games late,” Gerlich said. “Our kids are becoming more confident and are slowly getting into their groove. It has taken them awhile to find their confidence and getting used to each other.”
Notes: UTA is 3-0 against Appalachian State in the all-time series and 1-0 at College Park Center. … VanDijk is two blocks (78) away from tying for seventh in UTA history at 80.
Papa Johns: UTA’s game against Appalachian State is sponsored by PapaJohns.com. UTA fans can enjoy Papa Johns for 50 percent off on Saturday’s using code UTAHoops50.