TROY, Ala. (WSFA) - The Troy Trojans women’s basketball team hasn’t lost since last November to Duke. Since then, they’ve gone on a nine-game winning streak setting a new Division I program mark in the process (the longest streak is held by the 1992-93 team. That team won 15 games in a row in the school’s final year at the Division II level). The streak has extended from Dec. 1 to this point and could continue with a win over Louisiana Saturday inside Trojan Arena.
The numbers behind Chanda Rigby’s team’s success extends across both offense and defense as they’ve had to pull out some close games mixed in with a few blowouts.
In their latest victory, a 72-65 win over Lousiana-Monroe, the Trojans had to overcome a halftime deficit - one of five times that’s happened this season and just the second time it’d happened over the course of the nine-game winning streak - to defeat the Warhawks on the road. Their defense something that got them back into the game as they forced 21 turnovers in the game.
That’s where all of this begins. Defense.
Rigby has always pushed pace with her teams, wanting to get up as many shots as possible to allow them to score as many points as possible, but the truth of the matter is that the defense this team has played has been suffocating across this stretch. Of the nine games Troy has won on this streak, five have been won by fewer than 10 points. The defense is allowing just 60.1 points per game during that stretch and has forced a total of 161 turnovers, averaging out to nearly 18 forced turnovers a game.
The defense is holding opponents to 32.7 percent shooting from the field and 25.8 percent from three.
Offensively, the numbers between what Troy’s doing versus the opponent is staggering. With the pace that Troy runs, they’re averaging just over 11 more shots per game than their opponent (roughly 74 shots per game to 62) and making on average 27 shots per game to the opponent’s 20.
There’s a large disparity in free throw shooting as well. The Trojans are getting to the charity stripe 24 times a game during this run and making 17 of those attempts, roughly. Their opponent? Just 18 free throw attempts per game, making 12. In grand total, Troy has attempted 49 more free throws than the opposition (215 attempts to 166).
Four 15-plus point wins make up the remaining games of Troy’s winning streak. In that time, the largest margin of victory has settled in at 39 (90-51 win over Chattanooga Dec. 15). While the Trojans are averaging 76.8 points per game over the current streak, in their four 15-plus point wins, Troy is averaging 81.3 points, nearly 29 more points than their opponents.
Lastly, where the offense is dominating is in points in the paint. Only twice has Troy been outscored in points in the paint during the current nine-game winning streak. On average, the Trojans are scoring 29 points in the paint to the opponent’s 20. It largely helps that Troy has several forwards above 6-feet, which contributes to how often the Trojans are able to score down low.
As they look to continue its program record-setting winning streak, the Trojans will host Lousiana Saturday morning at 11 a.m. Tip off has been moved up due to potential inclement weather.