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The Journal Gazette

  • Brett Luke | The Journal Gazette Senior Kendall Knapke is averaging 14.9 points a game to lead the Indiana Tech women's team, which is on a 16-game winning streak.

Wednesday, January 09, 2019 1:00 am

Warriors' women on an impressive run

ELIZABETH WYMAN | The Journal Gazette

Indiana Tech vs. Siena Heights

When: 6 p.m. today

Where: Schaefer Center

An 81-63 loss to then-No.4 Marian on Nov. 1 looked to be cause for concern for the then-No.9 Indiana Tech women's basketball team.

But a 16-game winning streak quickly put that concern to rest for a team now ranked third in the NAIA.

“They do a very good job of taking things day by day and going through the process and if they add up they add up,” Warriors coach Jessie Biggs said. “It's just slowing things down and doing the detail work every day and the outcomes have been good.”

Not just good, but great as the Warriors (17-1, 9-0 Wolverine- Hoosier Athletic Conference) have the top scoring offense and No. 2 scoring defense in the conference and are winning by an average of 24 points.

The winning streak is the third longest in program history just behind an 18-game run last season and 20 straight in 1991-92.

Indiana Tech plays host to Siena Heights (14-7, WHAC 7-2), which has been receiving votes in the NAIA Coaches Poll, tonight at the Schaefer Center.

“It's been a lot of fun. You can't really be mad about winning 16 games in a row,” Kendall Knapke said. “We've had a lot of success and it's been really fun so far.”

The senior forward from Hoagland is averaging 14.9 points and 6.5 rebounds this season.

Knapke's a threat from beyond the arc but can take it to the basket, putting teams in tough spots on defense.

She's not the only scorer. Tech has two other players – DeAnn Kauffman and Alexis Hill – who are scoring in double figures.

“Last year we had a couple players who defenses could key in on, and this year everything is more spread out,” Knapke said. “You can't just focus on one or two players and stop them.

“You have to guard all of us.”

Biggs, now in her seventh year, said this team is the most unselfish group she's coached.

“No one cares who get the credit as long as we get the win,” Biggs said.

Starting just three games as a sophomore, Kauffman is having somewhat of a breakout season, averaging 14.4 points.

Biggs said her two leading scorers have put in the work to become a pair that's been nearly unstoppable thus far.

“Anyone that thinks that you can be a really good basketball player and just show up for the two hours at practice is dead wrong,” Biggs said. “Those guys are in the gym putting extra hours in – one of the first few kids here getting extra shots up.

“They work very hard at the individual side of the game and then whenever teams try to take away one or the other it seems the other is ready to go.”

ewyman@jg.net