By Tony Perotti
The Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders have begun the Conference USA season 4-0 behind the nation’s leading scorer Anastasia Hayes. The transfer from Tennessee is scorching the nets for an average of 28.6 PPG. At 5’7”, you may think the three-point shot is a big piece of her game and part of the reason for her incredible scoring output, but you would be wrong. Hayes is a monster on the inside!
Hayes has made only nine three-pointers this season in nine total games. She has made 80 two-point baskets. Of her 185 shots on the season, 135 have been attempted from inside the paint (73%). These are more like numbers you may see from a dominant post player like 6’5” Charli Collier from Texas. Collier is attempting 79% of her shots from inside the paint.
One difference for Hayes is her success rate. Hayes is connecting on 53.3% of her two-point field goals overall and 56.3% of her paint attempts. These are incredibly good numbers for a small guard. Hayes is operating with an overall field goal percentage of 48.1%, an effective field goal percentage of 50.5%, and a true field goal percentage of 58.4%.
The other significant difference for Hayes is her ability to get to the free-throw line. She has a total of 114 free throw attempts in nine games. She is getting to the free-throw line almost 13 times per game. The next closest is Arkansas’s Chelsea Dungee at about seven attempts per game.
The most important statistic for Hayes’ game is Free Throw Rate. Hayes has a FT Rate of 61.6, which is a high mark for a guard. For a non three-point shooter, this is an efficient way to score points. Hayes is making 61% of her free-throw attempts which equates to about 1.2 points per possession each time she reaches the free-throw line.
Anastasia Hayes is leading the NCAA in scoring this season the old-fashioned way. She is making a high percentage of two-point field goals and making most of her three-pointers as well as “and-ones” from the free throw line. She can easily be a 30-point per game scorer with a little more success from the free-throw line without changing a thing about her game. Opponents may want to make sure they keep their hands off of this 5’7” inside scoring threat.Tagged with: Analytics Academy Anastasia Hayes Effective Field Goal Percentage EFG FT Rate Hoop Insights Just Play Solutions MTSU