FLORENCE, S.C. – The Francis Marion University women’s basketball team will return to action after exams with a pair of games this weekend.
FMU (4-2) will play at Eckerd College (7-2) in St. Petersburg, Fla., on Friday (Dec. 17) at 3 p.m. in the Triton’s McArthur Center.
The Patriots will then return to the Palmetto State take part in the prestigious Crescent Bank Carolinas Challenge on Sunday (Dec. 19) in the Myrtle Beach Convention Center.
The event will feature a women’s college basketball tripleheader with Francis Marion facing Virginia Intermont College (6-6) at 5 p.m.
Coastal Carolina University (5-5) will face Butler University (5-4) in the opener at 1 p.m., while 12th-ranked University of North Carolina (10-0) plays the University of South Carolina (5-4) at 3 p.m. Admission is $10 for the tripleheader.
Francis Marion is led in scoring by senior Shannon Singleton-Bates, with a 17.7 points per game average, and sophomore guard Courtney Mealing (15.2 ppg). With 1,321 career points, Singleton-Bates is only 19 points shy of tying Danielle Moore for 13th position on the Patriots’ career scoring list.
FMU senior 5-10 point guard Robin Colbert is averaging 11.5 points, 7.0 rebounds, and 4.8 assists per game. In the latest NCAA Division II national stats, Colbert is seventh nationally in steals at 4.0 per contest.
As a team, the Patriots are ranked 13th nationally in scoring offense (81.7 ppg), 21st in turnover margin (+7.17), 26th in assists per game (17.0), 31st in field goal percentage (.452), and 33rd in steals per game (12.2).
FMU and Eckerd have split two previous meetings – the Patriots won 51-45 in 2003 and the Tritons won 56-53 in 1996 – while this will be the first-ever meeting between Francis Marion and VIC.
In last year’s Carolinas Challenge, Francis Marion defeated Bluefield College 111-77.
Fans can follow the live stats for both games through the FMU athletic site at www.fmupatriots.com