Women's Basketball |
Nov. 18, 2007
The University of Cincinnati hits the hardwood for the second time in four days, taking on the Duquesne Dukes at Fifth Third Arena in a 7 p.m. contest on Nov. 19. The matchup marks the first time the Bearcats have played the Dukes. UC will try to win its second consecutive game for the first time since Dec. 21, 2006, when it defeated Tennessee Tech after a victory over Alabama A&M on Dec. 18, 2006.
UC is led by an entirely new coaching staff, directed by J. Kelley Hall. Hall comes to Cincinnati from Louisiana-Lafayette where he won two Sun Belt Conference West Division titles and led the team to its first trip to the NCAA Tournament (2006-07). Hall's overall record as a head coach is 291-119 and he has compiled an 87-63 overall record as an NCAA Division I head coach.
The Dukes are playing Crusaders are playing their third of three road games to start the 2007-08 season. Duquesne is 1-1 after winning its season opener at Morehead State, 69-52, and losing at Atlantic Coast Conference foe Clemson, 80-72 last Wednesday. Junior guard Kristi Little makes nearly half of the shots she attempts (44.8%) to lead the Dukes with 20 points per game.
The Bearcats remain at Fifth Third Arena for the fourth of five straight regular season home games, taking on McNeese State on Wed., Nov. 21, at 7 p.m.
LAST TIME OUT:
Cincinnati won its first game of the 2007-08 regular season with a 96-69 handling of Horizon League opponent, Valparaiso. UC landed nine three pointers as a team and scored 40 points in the paint, leading to the 96 point outburst -- the most points UC has scored in a game since the 2003-04 season.
Freshman guard Tenishia Benson was superb in her first start as a Bearcat, shooting 11-for-11 from the charity stripe, dropping a game and career-high 25 points, and pulling down seven rebounds.
UC's front court of Jill Stephens
and Natasha Graboski
combined for 19 of the team's 45 rebounds. The Bearcats outrebounded the Crusaders, 45-20, with Kahla Roudebush
tying Stephens with a team and game-high 10 boards for UC.
Roudebush recorded the first double-double of the season for UC, scoring 22 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. She landed four three pointers and dished out five assists.
Carla Jacobs added was the fourth UC player to score in double figures against Valpo, dropping 15 points and a game-high seven assists for the Bearcats.
ABOUT THE DUKES: Duquesne (1-1) is a member of the Atlantic 10 and was picked to finish 13th in the 2007-08 league's preseason poll. The Dukes are led by Suzie McConnell-Serio, one of the most highly-decorated players in the history of women's basketball, with over 300 wins as a high school head coach and a former WNBA Coach of the Year. Duquesne's roster is made up of two seniors, a junior, and six sophomores and freshmen. Junior guard Kristi Little leads the Dukes with 20 points, 5.5 rebounds, 6.0 steals, 5.5 assists per game and a 44.8% field goal percentage. Senior forward Jade Singleton pulls down a team-high 8.0 rebounds a game and sophomore guard Keri Pryor and redshirt-freshman Samantha Pollino each add 11.0 points a game for the Dukes.
AGAINST THE A-10: Cincinnati has never played Duquesne in women's basketball; however, several opponents in the Atlantic 10 have appeared on UC's schedule. The Bearcats are 81-40 overall against opponents the 14 member A-10 conference. Overall against: Charlotte 11-6; Dayton 23-21; Duquesne 0-0; Fordham 1-0; George Washington 0-0; La Salle 0-0; Massachusetts 0-0; Rhode Island 0-0; Richmond 0-0; St. Bonaventure 1-0; Saint Joseph's 0-0; Saint Louis 25-4; Temple 0-0; Xavier 20-9.
BEARCATS BITS: The 2007-08 Bearcats return nine letterwinners and three starters from last season's squad that finished 15-14 overall and 6-10 in the BIG EAST Conference. Of the letterwinners returning for the Bearcats, junior guard/forward Shelly Bellman, one of UC's top returning players with a 10.4 points per game average last year, is out for the 2007-08 season with a leg injury. Senior forward Emy Ogide and freshman guard Asia Jenkins also will not suit up for the Bearcats against Duquesne, and junior guard Angel Morgan will see limited action after an injury in the game against Michigan. Sophomore center Natasha Graboski missed the first exhibition game nursing an injury, but rejoined the team in the second exhibition and in the regular season opener. Sophomore guard Carla Jacobs, a member of the BIG EAST all-freshman team in 2007, saw limited action in the first exhibition game but has started the first two regular season games.
BENSON SHINES: Freshman guard Tenishia Benson earned her first start against Valparaiso and showed no rookie jitters. She finished the game with a game-high 25 points and was perfect from the free throw line (11-11). Benson started the second half against Michigan and finished the game with 11 points and seven rebounds. The last UC freshman to lead the team in scoring in her first collegiate start was Shelly Bellman (15 points in 74-39 victory over St. Francis on Nov. 19, 2005).
REFOCUS: Fifth-year senior forward Renee Hein, who was a member of UC's track and field team the first four years of her career, has decided to leave the women's basketball team to focus on her dream of competing in high jump at the 2008 Olympics. In UC's two exhibition games, Hein averaged 10 minutes, four points and 1.5 rebounds a game.
NUMBER 45: After two seasons wearing jersey number 40, junior forward Jill Stephens has switched to number 45 for the 2007-08 season. Stephens is now wearing the same jersey number that her sister Anne wore during her career as a Bearcat (2003-06).