Despite losing its last six games and getting outscored 176-121 to South Dakota over the weekend to open Summit League play,
Denver is getting strong play out of its underclassmen.
Three out of the Pioneers’ top five scorers are underclassmen and five Denver underclassmen have started at least three games this season.
Sophomore Meghan Boyd is averaging a team-high 16.1 points per game this season and has played a total of 329 minutes through 10 games, which ranks ninth most out of all NCAA women’s student-athletes. The Eagle, Idaho native also leads the Summit League in made 3-point field goals (25), and dating back to last season, Boyd has made at least one 3-pointer in 13 straight games. The 5-foot-11 guard is also a very talented passer and is fourth in the Summit League in assists with 30.
The Pioneers have a strong one-two punch with Boyd and sophomore Uju Ezeudu. Ezeudu is averaging 14.7 points per game and 5.4 rebounds this season but it’s her efficient shooting that has to be making first-year head coach Doshia Woods happy. Ezeudu is shooting 52.5 percent from the field this season, which ranks second in the Summit League. The Reynoldsburg, Ohio native also leads the Summit League in free throws made (54) and free throws attempted (68) through 10 games this season. Most recently, Ezeudu went 16-of-19 from the free-throw line against USD on Jan. 3.
Woods has also been leaning heavily on two freshmen that include Emily Counsel and Rowan Hein and sophomore Sam Deem. The three student-athletes are averaging a combined 13.8 points and 5.1 rebounds per contest.
Denver has nine underclassmen on its roster and eight of those student-athletes have played in three games or more. The Pioneers have a lot of young talent and if they continue to work together and grow with each other, Woods and company should have a team that can be competitive night in and night out. Summit League fans have already seen some of that potential this season. Four of Denver’s eight losses have been by 10 points or fewer. The Pioneers have been competitive in out of conference games this season, however, they’ll need to carry that over into Summit League play.
The Pioners have a strong shot at picking up their first Summit League win of the season this weekend as they’ll host Oral Roberts on Friday and Saturday. ORU enters the weekend with a 2-6 record and is 0-6 on the road. The Golden Eagles have not played a Summit League contest yet as their two games against Omaha last week were postponed.