Nov. 13, 2011
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — THE SETTING
The University of Iowa women’s basketball team faces UNLV for the Hawkeye Challenge championship. Tipoff is slated for 2:30 p.m. Sunday on Mediacom Court inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Tickets are $9 for adults, $5 for youth (18 and under) and free for UI students.
Brent Balbinot and Shelley Till will call Sunday’s game for the Hawkeye Radio Network. Hawkeye fans can listen to the contest on AM-800 KXIC in Iowa City, AM-600 WMT in Cedar Rapids, AM-1040 WHO in Des Moines or on the Hawkeye All-Access page of hawkeyesports.com. Balbinot is in his eighth season as Iowa’s play-by-play voice, while Till is in her seventh providing analysis.
ON YOUR COMPUTER
Sunday’s contest vs. Harvard will be streamed live on hawkeyesports.com via the BTN Digital Network. Hawkeye All-Access subscribers can watch live video streams of UI events on the BTN Digital Network at no extra charge.
Hawkeye fans can also follow the game via live stats (Gametracker). The “GT” link can be accessed under the “Calendar” tab on the front page of hawkeyesports.com or on the women’s basketball schedule page.
Iowa has played 1,068 games since beginning basketball in 1974. Iowa’s overall record is 653-415 (.611). That includes a 329-165 (.666) mark in regular season Big Ten contests and a 310-89 (.777) mark in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
The UNLV Rebels opened their season with a 62-39 win over Butler in the first game of the Hawkeye Challenge. Butler limited the Rebels to just .370 (20-54) from the field, but UNLV held the Bulldogs to just a .283 (17-60) shooting percentage.
Sandrine Nzeukou led UNLV with 21 points and 15 rebounds. Kelli Thompson netted 16 points, while Mia Bell added 10.
The Rebels were picked to finish fifth in the Mountain West Conference and Jamie Smith was named a preseason All-Mountain West selection.
UNLV returns all five starters from last year’s team that went 11-20 overall and 4-12 in league play.
Thompson led the team in scoring a year ago with 14.1 points per game. Next was Lenita Sanford at eight points per contest, followed by Smith at 7.6 per game.
HAWKEYES OPEN SEASON WITH WIN OVER HARVARD
Iowa used a 53-point second half to race past Harvard, 90-81, Saturday night in the Hawkeye Challenge. Iowa shot .586 (17-29) from the field in the second half, including .455 (5-11) from three-point distance.
Three Hawkeyes scored in double figures, led by Jaime Printy. The junior netted a team-high 24 points, along with six rebounds and four assists. On her 21st birthday, Morgan Johnson added 18 points, eight rebounds and three blocks. Senior Kelly Krei chipped in 16 points (4-6 3Pt. FGs) and five rebounds.
SEASON OPENER NOTES
? Iowa’s 90 points Saturday night vs. Harvard are the most for a Hawkeye team in a season opener since scoring 90 against Howard in the 1989-90 season opener (Nov. 25, 1989…also in the Hawkeye Classic). The most points in a season opener came on Nov. 15, 1978 vs. Simpson (101).
? Saturday is only the third time in school history Iowa has scored 90 or more points in a season opener.
? Iowa is a perfect 12-0 in season openers under Head Coach Lisa Bluder. Saturday marked the ninth time in Bluder’s 12 years that the Hawkeyes will open the season at home.
? Saturday was the fifth time since 2000, and the first since 2009, that the Hawkeye Challenge served as Iowa’s season opener.
HAWKEYE CHALLENGE NOTE
Iowa has won 20 of the previous 25 tournaments it has hosted, and holds an impressive 46-5 record in Hawkeye Challenge contests.
IOWA IN THE RANKINGS
The Hawkeyes are receiving votes in both the Associated Press and the ESPN/USA Today preseason Top 25.
Three Iowa opponents are also ranked in the AP and ESPN/USA Today polls: Penn State (12/14), Purdue (17/21) and St. John’s (25/RV). Iowa could potentially face defending NCAA champion Texas A&M in the Junkanoo Jam over Thanksgiving. The Aggies are ranked sixth in both polls.
In addition, Ohio State, MIchigan State, Iowa State and Kansas State are receiving votes.
SUCCESS UNDER BLUDER
Last season marked the eighth time in 11 seasons under head coach Lisa Bluder that Iowa has been selected for the NCAA Tournament, including each of the last four seasons. The Hawkeyes have participated in postseason play in all but one season under Bluder (two WNIT appearances).
In addition, Iowa finished with a winning record for the 10th time in 11 seasons under Bluder. Iowa’s tie for third place in the Big Ten is also the eighth time, under Bluder, the Hawkeyes recorded an upper-division finish in the conference.
Iowa also tallied its sixth 20-win season under Bluder, including each of the last four seasons.
JUMP IN ATTENDANCE LAST SEASON
The University of Iowa had the second-largest increase in attendance from the previous season among Division I women’s basketball programs, according to data released by the NCAA. Lisa Bluder’s squad also finished the 2010-11 season ranked 13th nationally in average attendance, the highest ranking since the 1997-98 season when the UI ranked ninth.
Iowa jumped from an average of 3,488 fans during the 2009-10 season to 5,823 fans for the 2010-11 season, a boost of 2,335 fans. Louisville was the only other school to see a larger increase, adding 4,462 fans.
Iowa’s total attendance figure of 81,528 is the third-highest in school history, while the average of 5,823 is the fourth best in school history.
Iowa’s top crowd of the season came on Jan. 8 vs. Ohio State, when 9,865 fans saw the Hawkeyes knock off the 20th-ranked Buckeyes. That crowd was the 11th-largest single-game crowd in women’s basketball history.
MOVING UP CAREER CHARTS
Four Hawkeyes are currently working their way up the career records lists at Iowa.
? Kamille Wahlin ranks fourth in career three-pointers made (169), 11th in career assists (310) and 25th in career scoring (1,093). She needs 17 more three-pointers to move past Kristi Smith into third place, 13 more assists to move past Lisa Anderson for 10th place and eight more points to move into 23rd place.
? Morgan Johnson ranks second in career blocks (158) and needs 78 more to move past Tangela Smith for first place.
? Jaime Printy ranks sixth in career three-pointers made (154) and 28th in career scoring (1,045). She needs three more three-pointers to move past Leah Magner for fifth place and four more points to move into 26th place.
? Kelly Krei ranks ninth in career three-pointers made (120) and needs six more to move past Johanna Solverson into eighth place.
NEW HAWKEYES RANK HIGH
Iowa’s freshmen class was tabbed as the 11th best recruiting class of 2011 by ESPNHoopGurlz.com. The class includes five players, one at each position.
Included in the class is guard Samantha Logic, who is the third McDonald’s High School All-American to commit to the University of Iowa under Head Coach Lisa Bluder.
TWO PLAYERS OUT FOR THE SEASON
Senior Megan Considine and sophomore Jade Rogers will both miss the entire 2011-12 season.
Considine suffered a torn Achillies tendon during preseason workouts. Rogers had surgery to repair an injured knee.
HAWKEYES LAUNCH NEW FAN WEBSITE
Fans of the University of Iowa women’s basketball team now have another site to follow the Hawkeyes. www.IowaWomensBasketball.com gives fans a behind-the-scenes look at the program and will also feature exclusive videos during the season.
IOWA WOMEN’S BASKETBALL AND SOCIAL MEDIA
The Hawkeye women’s basketball has four different social media outlets. Check out the Iowa women’s basketball Facebook page or the University of Iowa Athletics Facebook page. Fans can also follow @TheIowaHawkeyes or @goiowa on Twitter.
Iowa hosts Albany Wednesday night at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. Fans can pick up a Megan Considine bobblehead at Wednesday’s game.