Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Shooting for More Than Just Shooting ; Parker Finding Role (S) with Eagles with Davis & Elkins Up Next

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

Shooting for More Than Just Shooting ; Parker Finding Role (S) with Eagles with Davis & Elkins Up Next

Article excerpt

Jessica Parker's idea of versatility is more than just being able to shoot from outside and drive to the hoop. She can play almost anywhere on the floor for the University of Southern Indiana women's basketball team, except at point guard.

"Yeah," she said, "that's not for me."

But she's game everywhere else.

The 6-foot senior has played shooting guard, small forward, power forward and even the post.

She loves the advantages those afford her.

"It's nice that if I'm not hitting outside shots, I can take (the person guarding her) down to the post," she said. "And vice versa."

The Bloomington, Ind., native will be back on the court Saturday night when the Screaming Eagles (1-0) host Davis & Elkins (1- 2), an NCAA Division II Midwest Region school out of West Virginia that's a member of the new Great Midwest Athletic Conference. Tipoff is 7:30 at the Physical Activities Center.

Last season as a newcomer - she transferred form Division I Eastern Illinois - Parker came off the bench to average 4.4 points and 2.9 rebounds per game.

She also sank 18 3-point shots, but off 62 attempts for only a 29 percent average. To be fair, she didn't get in as many games as she might have after suffering an early-season concussion that kept her out of several games and a late-season ankle injury that kept her out of several more.

Parker has been healthy so far this season and appears to be getting more of a regular role. She started USI's first game, scoring three points, passing out two assists - without a turnover - and grabbing eight rebounds in 23 minutes during USI's 87-46 rout of NAIA foe Asbury University at the PAC.

USI coach Rick Stein really likes her rebounding potential.

"Rebounding is very important, especially from the small forward position - she got three offensive rebounds in our first game," he said. "Those can get you some extra-effort plays, a basket or an opportunity for a teammate to score."

But her multi-position capability is what he seems to like the most. …

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