FLORENCE, S.C. – The Francis Marion University women’s basketball team will travel to Savannah, Ga., to play in the Armstrong Atlantic State University/Chatham Orthopaedics Christmas Classic on Friday and Saturday afternoons (Dec. 20-21).
The FMU women (5-2) will play 21st-ranked Fort Valley State University (7-0) in the classic’s opening game at 2 p.m. on Friday. The Patriots will then face Wingate University (6-1) on Saturday at 2 p.m. The classic includes two women’s games and two men’s games on each day.
Francis Marion is in the midst of a 38-day span during which the Patriots play eight straight games away from the Smith University Center. Senior 6-0 center Jontell Johnson continues to lead FMU in scoring (15.7 ppg), rebounding (8.6 rpg), blocked shots (17), and field goal percentage (58.3%).
The Patriots’ last win over a nationally ranked opponent was a 69-57 victory over 24th-ranked Kennesaw State University in the quarterfinal round of the 2001 Peach Belt Conference Tournament.
Fort Valley State, located in Fort Valley, Ga., is a member of the NCAA Division II Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The Lady Wildcats are a veteran squad with four starters returning from last’s years 24-9 squad that earned a bid to the NCAA national tournament. Senior 5-6 guard Maria Willis (20.0 ppg) leads Fort Valley State in scoring, and despite having played two overtime games, the Lady Wildcats are outscoring their opponents by more than 16 points per game.
This will be the first-ever meeting between FMU and Fort Valley State.
Live in-game statistics from the two Francis Marion games can be viewed on the AASU website at http://www.athletics.armstrong.edu/basketball/bk2002classic.html
The host school AASU (4-1) plays Wingate at 6 p.m. in Friday’s other women’s contest.
AASU/Chatham Orthopaedics Christmas Classic
Friday, Dec. 20
2 p.m. Fort Valley State vs. Francis Marion (women)
4 p.m. UNC Pembroke vs. Lenoir-Rhyne (men)
6 p.m. AASU vs. Wingate (women)
8 p.m. AASU vs. Eckerd (men)
Saturday, Dec. 21
2 p.m. Wingate vs. Francis Marion (women)
4 p.m. UNC Pembroke vs. Eckerd (men)
6 p.m. AASU vs. Fort Valley State (women)
8 p.m. AASU vs. Lenoir-Rhyne (men)