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Rutgers Women’s Basketball Hosts Villanova Saturday
  • Posted on February 01, 2013 11:25:04 AM
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    PISCATAWAY, N.J. (February 1, 2013) – The Rutgers women’s basketball team begins a two-game homestand on Sat., February 2 when the Scarlet Knights host Villanova at 2:00 p.m.  Fans can tune into WCTC to Danny Breslaur on the call and WRSU with Mike Rivera and Dylan MacKinnon providing all the action.  The game can also be viewed on RVision via ScarletKnights.com.

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    The Scarlet Knights got back into the win column Wednesday night with a 72-54 victory at Marquette that saw senior Monique Oliver collect a double-double with a season-high 23 points and 10 rebounds.  The victory improved RU to 12-8 overall and 3-4 in BIG EAST play.

    Despite battling a deep ankle bruise and having come off the bench in the last four games, Oliver returned to the top of the stat sheet following Wednesday’s double-double performance at Marquette.  Oliver is averaging 10.8 points per game along with a team-leading 5.1 rebounds per game.  

    Senior guard Erica Wheeler is second on the squad in scoring at 10.5 points per game. She has poured in double figures in 11 of Rutgers’ 20 games to date and has led the Scarlet Knights in scoring six times.

    Sophomore Betnijah Laney is third on the team at 9.3 points per contest along with 4.3 boards per game.  Laney is averaging 12.9 points per game in BIG EAST action, including a career-high 24 points performance on Jan. 16 against Providence, as well as a 15-point game at Marquette on Wednesday night.

    With the 72-54 win over the Golden Eagles on Wednesday, head coach C. Vivian Stringer collected her 897th victory and needs just three more wins for her 900th career win.


    The Rutgers women’s basketball team returned to the win column Wednesday night at the Al McGuire Center as Monique Oliver poured in her second double-double of the year with a season-high 23 points and 10 rebounds in the Scarlet Knights 72-54 victory over Marquette.

    Oliver netted 17 of her 23 points in second half action as the Scarlet Knights overcame a one-point, 29-28, halftime deficit and outscored the Golden Eagles, 44-35, in the second half.

    Rutgers ended the game with 46 points in the paint and shot 54 percent (27-of-50) from the field.

    Sophomore Betnijah Laney also added 15 points and five assists in the win.

    Rutgers made its inside presence known early, but foul trouble would strike the posts as senior Chelsey Lee collected four first half fouls and Oliver and sophomore Christa Evans each had two.   While the Scarlet Knights had rocketed to a 13-5 advantage to start the game, at the midway point, RU went four and a half minutes without a field goal.  During the drought Marquette executed a 12-1 run to take a 24-19 lead with 5:45 left in opening stanza and entered the locker room at half ahead by one, 29-28.  

    Oliver scored the Scarlet Knights first 10 points out of the locker room and Rutgers retook the lead a minute and a half into the second half, never looking back.  Following a tip-in by Oliver on her 10th straight point that gave RU a 38-33 lead, Marquette was able to pull within in three twice, but would never get any closer. 

    An 11-2 run by the Scarlet Knights, capped by a three-pointer from the left side of the arc by sophomore Shakena Richardson gave RU a 51-39 edge with 7:22 left in the game.  Rutgers would lead by double digits the rest of the way.

    Marquette was led by Katherine Plouffe with 14 points and 13 rebounds.



    The Villanova Wildcats enter Saturday’s contest at the RAC sporting a 16-4 overall record and 5-2 mark in the BIG EAST race.  The Wildcats, who are receiving votes in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today Polls, are coming off a 76-43 loss at No. 2 Connecticut on Tuesday.  Prior to the match-up with the Huskies, Villanova had won seven of its last eight contests with the lone setback being an overtime loss at Providence.

    The Wildcats produce the fewest turnovers of any school in the country making only an average of 11.4 miscues per game.  Additionally, Villanova ranks eighth nationally in scoring defense, allowing opponents just over 50 points per game. 

    Senior forward Laura Sweeney leads Villanova at 12.8 points per game along with a team-leading 6.8 rebounds per game.

    Second in scoring is senior guard Rachel Roberts who is averaging 10.9 points per game and 4.6 assists per contest.

    The Wildcats are led by Harry Perretta who in his 35th years at the helm of the Villanova women’s basketball program has compiled a 633-396 record.  Last season he captured his 600th career win to become just the seventh Division I coach to win 600 games at one school.  His teams have reached the post-season in 10 of the last 13 seasons including a WNIT appearance last year.



    Rutgers has won 10-straight and 12 of its last 13 against Villanova. RU holds a 25-8 all-time record versus the Wildcats in a series that dates back to 1980.



    Former Rutgers guard April Sykes scored a game-high 20 points as the Scarlet Knights erased a seven-point first-half deficit to defeat Villanova 61-52 on Saturday, Feb. 18 at the Pavilion.

    Sykes also grabbed a game-high seven rebounds, while two others were in double-figure scoring.  Erica Wheeler added 16 points and  Khadijah Rushdan chipped in 13.

    Villanova opened the game with seven-straight points, en route to building its largest lead of the contest. The Wildcats eventually went ahead, 11-5 but the Scarlet Knights responded with a 10-5 run, to tie the game at 16-16 with 6:32 left in the first half.

    Sykes scored a layup on an assist from Betnijah Laney, putting RU up by two (18-16) as Villanova answered with a layup from Laura Sweeney, knotting the contest at 18-18. It would stand as the final tie of the contest as the Scarlet Knights regained the lead on the following possession – a Wheeler three-pointer – to pull away for good.

    Rutgers took a double-digit lead on a Sykes jumper with 14:49 left in the contest but the Wildcats continued to battle back, cutting the deficit down to five points. Sykes, Wheeler and  Syessence Davis sparked a 6-0 run as RU once again went ahead by double-figures with three minutes remaining in the contest.


    The Scarlet Knights are 197-89 (.689) all-time in BIG EAST regular season games. Rutgers is 85-59 (.590) all-time in BIG EAST regular season road games. Conversely, the Scarlet Knights are 112-30 (.789) in conference home games.


    The Scarlet Knights have had an outstanding track record of success at home during the previous 10 seasons under head coach C. Vivian Stringer. Rutgers is 131-21 at the RAC since the 2002-03 season.  The Scarlet Knights are currently 9-1 at the RAC this season.

    Rutgers at the RAC (losses in parentheses)

    2012-13: 9-1 (St. John’s)

    2011-12: 12-3  (Tenn, Notre Dame, St. John’s)

    2010-11: 12-1 (UConn)

    2009-10: 10-5 (Stanford, Temple, Notre Dame ‘Cuse, St. John’s)

    2008-09: 14-4 (Tenn, USF, Pitt, UConn)

    2007-09: 14-1 (Stanford)

    2006-07: 11-2 (Duke, UConn)

    2005-06: 11-1 (Temple)

    2004-05: 13-0

    2003-04: 14-1 (UConn)

    2002-03: 11-2 (BC, Miami)


    The Scarlet Knights picked up their first win on the road Wednesday night at Marquette since a win at Temple on Nov. 21.  The 72-54 victory over the Golden Eagles snapped a six-game road losing streak for RU as the team improved to 2-7 on the road. 


    Senior Monique Oliver collected her second double-double of the season with a season-high 23 points and 10 rebound effort in the Jan. 30 win at Marquette. 

    Since coming off the bench beginning with Providence on Jan. 16, four games ago, Oliver has averaged 12.8 points and 5.5 rebounds per game.  Additionally the senior Scarlet Knight has gone 20-of-31 to shoot 64.5 percent from the floor.

    Early in the season Oliver had seen limited playing time thanks in part to a deep ankle bruise.  After missing the second half of the Dec. 30 game at

    #13/15 Tennessee, all of the final non-conference contest with La Salle on Jan. 2 and playing limited minutes in the BIG EAST opener against St. John’s on Jan. 6 with the ankle injury, Oliver was back in form narrowly missing a double-double against Louisville on Jan. 8. Oliver shot 5-of-8 from the floor to capture 10 points and hauled in a game-high nine rebounds. However, early foul trouble kept her sidelined for most of the Jan. 13 contest with the #2/3 Fighting Irish.


    The Scarlet Knights picked up their first win on the road Wednesday night at Marquette since a win at Temple on Nov. 21.  The 72-54 victory over the Golden Eagles snapped a six-game road losing streak for RU as the team improved to 2-7 on the road. 

    1,000 AND COUNTING

    With her 23 points against Marquette senior Monique Oliver moved into 26th on the all-time scoring leaders list with 1,095 career points..  She needs 25 more points to move past Brittany Ray (2006-10) into 25th on the all-time points list.


    Erica Wheeler’s four three-pointers on Jan. 13 at #2/3 Notre Dame moved her name up to seventh on the made three-pointers list as she cleared former Scarlet Knight Epiphanny Prince (2006-09). 

    Wheeler has 137 career three-point field goals and needs one more three-pointer to pass April Sykes (2008-12) for sixth all-time.

    After nine shots behind the arc at Louisville on Jan 8, Wheeler moved up to fifth in the attempted three-pointer category passing Shawnetta Stewart (1997-00). 

    She currently has 436 three-point attempts in her four-year career.  She needs 33 more attempts to move past April Sykes (2008-12) into fourth all-time.


    The Rutgers women’s basketball team will have a week to prepare for Cincinnati on Sat., February 9.  Tip-off is set for 6 p.m. and the game will air on SNY.

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