Women's Basketball |
Dec. 14, 2007
The University of Cincinnati plays Youngstown State in a 2 p.m. matinee at Fifth Third Arena on Saturday, Dec. 15. The Bearcats are coming off a 73-66 victory over Wright State and will be shooting for their sixth consecutive win in Fifth Third Arena.
Four UC players are averaging double figures, led by redshirt-sophomore Kahla Roudebush's 17.0 points a game. Junior forward Jill Stephens averages a team-high 11.0 rebounds a game and has gone the distance in four games this year.
UC welcomed the return of senior forward Emy Ogide in Tuesday's game against Wright State. Ogide entered the game at the 18:35 mark of the second half and scored on her first touch, a turnaround jumper in the paint with 17:06 to play.
Freshman guard Tenishia Benson connected on 27-of-27 free throws to start the season, not missing at the charity stripe until the Dayton game (11/19). Against Wright State, she began a new streak, going 5-for-5 at the line.
Cincinnati is averaging 72.8 points a game and is outrebounding its opponents by an 11.0 margin (45.1-to-34.1 rebounds a game). The Bearcats have not averaged more than 72 points a game since the 2001-02 squad that dropped 74.5 points a game. The 2001-02 team finished the season 27-5 overall, won the Conference USA Tournament and advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
The Bearcats remain at home for the next two games, taking on Central Michigan on Monday, Dec. 17 in a 7 p.m. contest.
LAST TIME OUT:
Five Bearcats scored in double figures, led by Jill Stephens' team-high 19 points and Kahla Roudebush's 17 points as the University of Cincinnati (6-2) recorded a 73-66 victory over visiting Wright State University (2-7) at Fifth Third Arena on Tuesday night.
Stephens played the entire game for UC, which had a 10 day break from action for finals week. Stephens pulled down a team-high nine rebounds and was 2-for-2 at the free throw line.
Tenishia Benson scored 15 points for the Bearcats and Carla Jacobs and Natasha Graboski each added 10 for UC.
Jacobs handed out six helpers for the game and grabbed four boards and had two steals. Benson was 5-of-5 at the free throw line and Roudebush was 7-of-8 at the charity stripe, both makes and attempts were career-highs.
UC scored 46 points in the paint to Wright State's 18, but the Bearcats were held to an uncharacteristic one three pointer as a team. The Bearcats had the same number of rebounds as the Raiders, the first time this season UC tied its opponent on the glass.
ABOUT YOUNGSTOWN STATE: Youngstown State is playing its ninth game of the season, coming off a 64-45 loss against Miami (OH) last Saturday. The Penguins won four straight after opening the season with three losses and are led by junior forward Ashley Pendleton, who drops 8.9 points a game. Senior forward Jessica Schloemp pulls down a team-high 7.4 rebounds a game for YSU, which was picked to finished sixth in the preseason Horizon League poll. Senior guard Lauren Branson, a native of Cincinnati and graduate of Archbishop McNicholas High School, scores 5.9 points a game for the Penguins. Youngstown State is the third Horizon League opponent UC has played thus far, with the Bearcats winning, 96-69, over Valparaiso and defeating Wright State, 73-66. The Penguins are coached by Tisha Hill who owns a 35-85 overall record at YSU over the last five seasons.
TIP IT GOOD: Natasha Graboski, a 6-3 sophomore center, has won five of the last seven jumpball tips and won the overtime tip in the Duquesne game. Graboski is one of the team's tougher players, fouling out of the Duquesne, Presbyterian and Xavier games and recording a team-high 26 fouls this season. The center has the third-highest assists on the team with 16.
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 made her return to the hardwood against Wright State but missed the first seven games. Junior guard Angel Morgan is working back to full speed after an injury in the game against Michigan.
BIG EAST HONOR ROLL: Junior forward Jill Stephens was named to the BIG EAST Honor Roll for the week ending Nov. 26, as announced by the league office. Stephens started both the McNeese State and Duquesne games, averaging 14.0 ppg, 17.0 rpg, and shooting 9-of-10 from the free throw line. Stephens pulled down 22 rebounds -- 14 of them offensive -- in the McNeese State game, earning third place in the UC record books for total rebounds in a game and tying a Fifth Third Arena record with 14 offensive boards. She recorded her second double-double of the season with 14 points and 10 rebounds vs. Duquesne. Stephens scored a career-high 22 points in the Xavier win and dropped 19 points in the Wright State win. Her 22 rebounds against McNeese State is currently the highest individual rebounding performance in the BIG EAST and is tied for second in the country (with Courtney Paris of Oklahoma) in games through Dec. 9.
BENSON BRINGS IT: Freshman guard Tenishia Benson was named to the BIG EAST Honor Roll for the week ending Nov. 18, as announced by the league office. 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). Additionally, 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). Benson continued her hot start with a 15 point, nine rebound performance against Duquesne, landing 9-of-9 free throws. Against McNeese State she was 2-for-2 at the line and she landed one of one attempt against Presbyterian, increasing her streak to 23. At Dayton Benson hit her first four attempts before missing. She finished with a streak of 27 made free throws, passing Valerie King's streak of 21 set in the 2002-03 season. Benson finished the McNeese State game with her first double-double of the year, scoring 14 points and grabbing 10 rebounds, and at Dayton she recorded a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds. She scored 11 points, seven in the last two minutes, in the win at Xavier. Benson scored 15 points and started a new streak at the free throw line, connecting on 5-of-5 against Wright State. Benson's 94.6 free throw percentage was 13th in the country in games ranked through Dec. 9.
ROUDEBUSH RANKS: Redshirt sophomore Kahla Roudebush leads the team in scoring with 17.0 points a game, which ranks 74th in the country (games through Dec. 9).
FROM DOWNTOWN: The Bearcats have landed 60 three pointers this year and average 7.5 treys a game. With 20 regular season games left in 2007-08, if UC maintains its current average per game it will finish easily within the top-5 in the school record book. The Bearcats' three pointer average per game is the fifth highest in the nation (games through Dec. 9).
WINDOW WIPERS: The Bearcats will focus heavily on rebounding this year and are off to a good start, outrebounding opponents, 361-273. UC grabbed 60 rebounds against McNeese State, the third highest rebounding performance in school history, and followed it up with a 54-rebound game against Presbyterian. Currently Cincinnati is second in the BIG EAST with a +11.0 rebounding margin.
FINE AT THE LINE: In exhibition this season, the Bearcats were 19-for-32 (59.4%) from the charity stripe and currently UC is shooting 77.1 at the line. Freshman Tenishia Benson was an outstanding 11-for-11 from the line in the win over Valparaiso and followed up that performance by going 9-for-9 against Duquesne. The Bearcats did not miss at the line against McNeese State, going 10-for-10 as a team and tying the school record of 100% from the free throw line. The 2003-04 team was perfect from the line twice in 2003, landing 11-for-11 against Indiana State and going 14-for-14 against Loyola Marymount. The Bearcats are second in the BIG EAST in free throw percentage, connecting on 108-of-140 attempts for a .771 percentage at the charity stripe.
PF PER GAME: Cincinnati's lowered its personal fouls per game average to 12.5. In games through Dec. 9, UC was averaging 13.0 fouls a game, the third best in the country. The Bearcats have only had someone foul out of a game four times this season and have committed only 100 fouls so far as a team.
PROTECTING THE BALL: After averaging 20.5 turnovers a game in the first two exhibition games, UC has done a much better job protecting the ball over the last eight games, committing only 14.5 turnovers a game.