PISCATAWAY, N.J. (February 8, 2013) – Rutgers head coach C. Vivian Stringer will go for career win #900 when her Scarlet Knights travel to DePaul for a Tuesday tip-off at 9:00 p.m. (EST). With a win, Coach Stringer will become just the fourth women’s basketball coach to accomplish the feat. The game will air nationally on the CBS Sports Network with Brent Stover and Deb Antonelli on the broadcast. Fans can also tune into WRSU with Erik-Ray Sepulveda and Michael Rivera providing all the action.
The Scarlet Knights have made it three straight after a nine-point, 55-46, win over Cincinnati on Saturday evening. Rutgers enters Tuesday’s contest at 14-8 overall and 5-4 in BIG EAST play.
Despite battling a deep ankle bruise and having come off the bench in the last six games, Oliver returned to the top of the stat sheet two weeks ago, which included a game-high 13 points in RU’s game with the Bearcats.. Oliver is averaging 10.7 points per game and is second on the squad in rebounding at 5.0 boards per contest.
Senior guard Erica Wheeler is second on the squad in scoring at 10.2 points per game. She has poured in double figures in 11 of Rutgers’ 23 games to date and has led the Scarlet Knights in scoring six times.
Sophomore Betnijah Laney, who last week was named to the BIG EAST Honor Roll, is third on the team at 9.5 points per contest along with 4.5 boards per game. Laney is averaging 12.7 points per game in BIG EAST action, including a career-high 24 points performance on Jan. 16 against Providence, as well as a 12-point game against Cincinnati on Saturday. She also netted eight of her 12 points in last weekend’s win over Villanova in overtime.
On the boards, the Scarlet Knights are led by fifth-year senior Chelsey Lee at 5.2 rebounds per game. Lee hauled in a game-high nine rebounds at RU outrebounded the Bearcats, 45-21, in their biggest rebounding margin in BIG EAST play to-date.
LAST TIME OUT - VS. CINCINNATI
The Rutgers women’s basketball team overcame a nine-point second half deficit to rally for a nine-point victory, 55-46, over Cincinnati on Sunday evening at the RAC.
The win gave head coach C. Vivian Stringer 899 career victories as she tries become just the fourth women’s basketball coach in history to accumulate 900 career wins when the Scarlet Knights take on DePaul on Tuesday night.
Cincinnati had a 30-23 halftime lead and led by nine, 34-25, with 16:22 left in the second half. From there, however, Rutgers proceeded to take a 15-2 run and held the Bearcats scoreless for nearly a 10-minute period. Sophomore Shakena Richardson helped to tie the game up at 36-36 as she tore down the court following one of her career-high eight rebounds to feed classmate Betnijah Laney on a fast break. Laney, who finished with 12 points, would cap the run at the 7:32 mark as the Scarlet Knights led 40-36.
Kayla Cook ended the drought for the Bearcats by knocking down a three-pointer and pulling her team within one, 40-39, but Cincinnati would get no closer. Rutgers followed by racking up eight unanswered points and denying the Bearcats a bucket for a stretch of nearly five minutes.
Down the stretch, Rutgers sunk all six of its free throw attempts over the game’s final 30 seconds for the final margin.
Senior Monique Oliver, who came off the bench for the sixth-straight game poured in 13 points, with nine of those points coming in the first stanza. Laney and Richardson both netted 12 in the RU victory.
Cincinnati’s lone player in double figures, Dayeesha Hollins, captured 20 points going 6-of-12 from the floor and 5-of-5 from the line.
The Scarlet Knights crashed the boards, outrebounding the Bearcats, 45-21, for RU’s largest rebounding margin to-date in BIG EAST play.
The DePaul Blue Demons enter Tuesday’s contest with a 17-7 overall record and 6-4 mark in BIG EAST competition. The Blue Demons are coming off a 91-44 setback at #2/3 Connecticut on Sunday afternoon. At home at the McGrath-Phillips Arena, DePaul holds at 13-1 mark this season and is riding a 12-game home win streak. DePaul’s lone loss at home this year was a 92-80 loss to Dayton back on Nov. 10.
The Blue Demons have a trio averaging double digits and ranked in the top 15 in scoring. DePaul is led by senior guard Anna Martin at 16.2 points per game, but Martin has missed the last four games with a knee injury. Martin currently ranks sixth in the conference in scoring.
Sophomore guard Brittany Hrynko is second on the squad at 15.6 points per game, which puts her eighth in the BIG EAST in scoring, and junior forward Jasmine Penny is averging 14.2 points per game, placing her name 15th among BIG EAST scoring leaders.
On the boards, DePaul is led by senior forward Katherine Harry who tops the BIG EAST stats at 10.9 rebounds per contest. She is also pouring in 9.3 points per game as well.
At the helm of the Blue Demon program is Doug Bruno, who is in his 27th year at DePaul.
ALL-TIME SERIES WITH DEPAUL
The Scarlet Knights hold a 5-3 all-time advantage over DePaul. RU is a perfect 4-0 at the RAC, including last season’s buzzer beater, 65-64, win on Jan. 24, 2012. All three Blue Demon victories have been on their homecourt.
LAST TIME OUT - VS. DEPAULI
Former Rutgers guard Khadijah Rushdan scored 24 points and the game-winning layup with 1.5 seconds left on the clock as the No. 11/12 Scarlet Knights erased a 16-point second-half deficit to defeat No. 23/22 DePaul, 65-64, on Jan. 24, 2012 at the RAC.
In addition to Rushdan scoring in double-figures, Erica Wheeler and Monique Oliver each added 10 points in the contest. Syessence Davis chipped in a career-high nine points, to go along with five rebounds. Rushdan was one rebound shy of a double-double with nine boards, while adding five assists.
Rutgers overcame its largest deficit of the season en route to its second-straight BIG EAST victory, due in large part to the late-game effort from Rushdan. In the final 3:40 of the contest, Rushdan singlehandedly outscored DePaul 11-4. Over the past three games, she is averaging 8.7 points per game in the final five minutes of play.
The Scarlet Knights built a five-point lead (28-23) with 4:56 to play in the first half and seemed poised to carry the advantage into the locker room at halftime. However, the Blue Demons went on a 9-4 spurt to close the opening period, hitting a three-pointer to tie the score for the first time in the half at 32-32.
DePaul took a lead for the fifth time on the night, pulling ahead by 14 points (50-36), as the Scarlet Knights struggled to keep the game close. Rutgers opened the second half shooting 3-for-10 from the field with Rushdan, Sykes and Oliver providing the only field goals to that point.
Rutgers trailed by as much as 16 points (56-40) with 10:26 left in the game, but the tide eventually shifted as the Scarlet Knights began to rally and chip away at the deficit. An emphasis on defense proved to be the difference maker with DePaul committing five turnovers on the final nine possessions, including three missed shots.
Rushdan ignited the RU offense, scoring the final 11 points down the stretch. With DePaul leading by one (64-63), Deanna Ortiz went to the free throw line with a chance to put the Blue Demons ahead by three. Ortiz missed the front end of a one-and-one, and Betnijah Laney grabbed the rebound which was played ahead to Rushdan as the final seconds ticked off the clock. Rushdan dribbled full court past the DePaul defense and sank the game-winner with 1.5 to play.
RUTGERS IN ALL-TIME BIG EAST GAMES
The Scarlet Knights are 199-89 (.691) 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 114-30 (.792) in conference home games.
MAKING AN IMPACT
Sophomore Shakena Richardson has gotten the starting nod at guard the last two games and in those two contests has reset several career marks. Richardson, who stands at 5-4, reset her career-mark in rebounds with eight against the Bearcats on Saturday after hauling in seven boards against Villanova in the previous contest. RU’s shortest person on the roster has averaged 7.5 rebounds in RU’s last two games
Against Villanova on Feb. 2, Richardson captured a career-high 14 points surpassing her previous high of 11 in the victory over Georgetown on Jan. 22. Her seven assists were also a career mark, surpassing her previous high of six dished out in games with LA Tech and Providence
1,000 AND COUNTING
With her 23 points against Marquette senior Monique Oliver moved into 26th on the all-time scoring leaders list. With a game-high 13 against the Bearcats on Saturday, she now has 1,136 career points.. She needs seven more points to move past Brittany Ray (2006-10) into 25th on the all-time points list
MOVING UP THE LIST
Wheeler has 140 career three-point field goals and needs five more three-pointer to pass Shawnetta Stewart (1997-2000) for fifth all-time. She currently has 444 three-point attempts in her four-year career. She needs 25 more attempts to move past April Sykes (2008-12) into fourth all-time.
The Scarlet Knights return home to host #2/3 Connecticut on Saturday, Feb. 16 at 4 p.m. at the RAC. The game will air on SNY (BIG EAST Network).