PISCATAWAY, N.J. (January 27, 2014) – The Rutgers women’s basketball team returns home to the RAC to begin a three-game homestand starting with No. 5 Louisville on Tuesday, Jan. 28 at 9 p.m. The game will air on the CBS Sports Network with Brent Stover and Debbie Antonelli on the call.
Rutgers’ famed Grease Trucks will be driving over to the RAC for Tuesday night’s game with the Cardinals.
Also don’t forget to pick up your Rachel Hollivay trading card, available to the first 200 fans at the ticket table in the lobby.
• Tuesday’s American Athletic Conference matchup with #5/#5 Louisville tips off at 9 p.m. (EST) at the RAC. The game will be broadcast live on CBS Sports Network, with Debbie Antonelli and Brent Stover on the call. WCTC and Rutgers student radio, WRSU, will also be in attendance to cover all the action live.
• Rutgers enters the contest at 15-4 overall after winning its second straight against Temple. The Scarlet Knights used their highest second half points total of the season (52) to win, 74-68.
• Sophomore forward Kahleah Copper leads RU in scoring and field goal percentage. She fifth in the American with 16.9 points per game and leads the league in field goal percentage (60.4 percent). She has led RU in scoring 11 times in 19 games.
• Copper was named to the American Athletic Conference Honor Roll for the fifth time this season after averaging 18.0 points, 4.5 rebounds, 2.5 steals per game and shooting a blistering 68.2 percent from the floor in wins at UCF and Temple.
• Junior Betnijah Laney is averaging just shy of a double-double 13.4 points and 9.8 rebounds per game. She has scored in double figures 10 times in 17 games played, recording 10 double-doubles in that span.
• Sophomore Rachel Hollivay enters the matchup eighth nationally in blocks per game (3.3). That figure is tops in the American.
The No. 5/5 Cardinals enter the contest on a 13-game winning streak and are 20-1 overall this season. The team’s lone loss this season came on the road at No. 9/8 Kentucky, which bested Louisville, 69-64, at Memorial Coliseum.
The Cardinals are unbeaten in conference play at 8-0 thus far, coming to Piscataway after beating Memphis, 88-61 at home. Four Cardinals scored in double figures in the win, as Shoni Schimel led the way with 29 points on 10-of-16 shooting. She leads the team and is third in the American with 18.1 points per game.
She was a scorching hot 9-of-12 (75 percent) from beyond the arc last time out, while her 41.0 percent clip from 3-point range and 3.6 3-pointers made per game leads the league.
Sara Hammond is second on the team with 11.2 points per game, as her 56.0 percent shooting clip is fourth-best in the American. The Cardinals’ Asia Taylor is not far behind Hammond, owning a 53.3 percent shooting average for seventh place.
ALL-TIME SERIES WITH LOUISVILLE
The Cardinals and Scarlet Knights have traded wins in the last four series games, as Louisville enters Tuesday night’s matchup with a 6-4 lead all-time. The last two meetings between the two teams have gone into overtime, with RU holding a 1-1 record in those games.
The No. 15/13 Cardinals needed overtime to pull out a win over the Rutgers women’s basketball team last season, beating the Scarlet Knights, 66-57, at the KFC YUM! Center. The Scarlet Knights led by as many as 11 points in the second half.
Tied at 52-52 at the end of regulation, the Cardinals outscored the Scarlet Knights, 14-5, to take the victory.
Two seasons ago, Rutgers handed Louisville and overtime loss, defeating the No. 16/15 Cardinals, 71-68. Junior guard Erica Wheeler scored a career-high 23 points, including a buzzer beating three-pointer, in that contest.
A member of the Scarlet Knights has scored 20 or more points 12 times in 2013-14, the most 20+ point outings since the 2011-12 season when RU had a Scarlet Knight reach the milestone nine times.
Kahleah Copper has reached the 20+ point milestone seven times thus far this season, the most since April Sykes did so six times during the 2010-11 campaign and Brittany Ray did so seven times in 2009-10.
Epiphany Prince holds the mark for the most 20-point games in the last five years, recording 16 in the 2008-09 season.
Copper notched 24 points and Betnijah Laney dropped in 20 in RU’s outing against Temple (Jan. 25), marking the fourth time this year RU has had two Knights score 20 or more points in a game. RU also had two Scarlet Knights drop 20 or more points against UConn (Tyler Scaife – 22; Kahleah Copper 20), Howard (Rachel Hollivay – 26; Kahleah Copper – 23) and Memphis (Kahleah Copper – 23; Tyler Scaife – 21).
MILESTONE COACHING ALERT
Head coach C. Vivian Stringer is approaching another milestone in her career. Stringer is approaching her 400th career victory “On The Banks”, needing four more victories to accomplish the feat.
All-Time Rutgers WBB Coaching Records (By Wins)
Theresa Grentz - 434-150/ (1977-95) 19 seasons
C. Vivian Stringer - 396-201/(1995-present) 19 seasons
Ellen Johns - 6-5/(1974-75) 1 season
Dottie McCrea - 5-9/(175-76) 1 season
After being held to only two points in losses at Memphis and against No. 1 UConn, Briyona Canty has rebounded in the last two game averaging 12.0 points and 4.5 assists per game. At UCF, Canty poured in 11 points, dished out five assists and hauled in five rebounds. She followed up by playing 30 minutes against Temple, the most minutes in since late Nov., and tying her career-high with 13 points. Canty also poured in 13 points at the Barclays Center against LSU in Nov. Against the Owls, Canty also hauled in four rebounds, dished out four assists and tied her season-high with two steals.
GETTING TO THE POINTS
Rutgers has one of the highest scoring averages under C. Vivian Stringer’s 19-year tenure “On the Banks” with the 2013-14 squad.
On the season, RU is averaging 68.3 points per game. That is 12.3 points more than the squad averaged last year and the best scoring average since the Final Four season in 2006-07, when the Scarlet Knights averaged 64.4 points per game.
The Scarlet Knights have scored 60 or more points in 18 of their 19 games this season.
1. 70.0 (35 games) 1998-99 – 29-6 – Elite Eight
2. 68.7 (32 games) 1997-98 – 22-10 – Sweet 16
3. 68.3 (19 games) 2013-14 – CURRENT SEASON
4. 67.3 (29 games) 2002-03 – 21-8 – 2nd Round
5. 65. 6 (31 games) 2000-01 – 23-8 – 2nd Round
6. 64.4 (36 games) 2006-07 – 27-9 – National Runner-up
7. 64.0 (35 games) 1999-00 – 26-8 – Sweet 16
8. 63.9 (32 games) 2005-06 – 27-5 – Sweet 16
9. 63.2 (35 games) 2004-05 – 28-7 – Elite 8
10. 63.1 (34 games) 2008-09 – 21-13 – Sweet 16
11. 62.5 (33 games) 2003-04 – 21-12 – 1st Round
12. 61.9 (28 games) 1995-96 – 13-15
13. 61.4 (33 games) 2010-11 – 20-13 – 2nd Round
14. 61.0 (34 games) 2007-08 – 27-7- Elite 8
15. 60.9 (32 games) 2011-12 – 1st Round
16. 57.8 (34 games) 2009-10 – 19-15 – 1st Round
17. 57.2 (28 games) 1996-97 -11-17
18. 56.0 (30 games) 2012-13 – 16-14
19. 55.6 (29 games) 2001-02 – 9-20
PROTECTING HOME COURT
The Scarlet Knights have had an outstanding track record of success at home during the previous 10 seasons under head coach C. Vivian Stringer.
RU is 8-1 at home to start the season and has gone 143-22 at the RAC since the 2002-03 season. The Scarlet Knights went 13-2 at the RAC last season, including a victory over No. 21/22 Miami.
Rutgers at the RAC over the last 10 years:
2013-14: 8-1 (UConn)
2012-13: 13-2 (St. John’s, UConn)
2011-12: 12-3 (Tennessee, Notre Dame, St. John’s)
2010-11: 12-1 (UConn)
2009-10: 10-5 (Stanford, Temple, Notre Dame Syracuse, St. John’s)
2008-09: 14-4 (Tennessee, USF, Pittsburgh, UConn)
2007-09: 14-1 (Stanford)
2006-07: 11-2 (Duke, UConn)
2005-06: 11-1 (Temple)
2003-04: 14-1 (UConn)
2002-03: 11-2 (Boston College, Miami)
EARLY AND OFTEN
Sophomore Kahleah Copper has made her first attempt from the field in 17 of 19 games this season. She leads RU and the American with a 60.4 percent shooting clip. She has also scored in double figures in 16 of 18 contests.
THE WINNING FORMULA
The starting lineup of Rachel Hollivay, Kahleah Copper, Tyler Scaife, Syessence Davis and Betnijah Laney was used for the 10th time this season against Temple. That starting five is 8-2 this season.
RUTGERS VS. THE TOP-25
Rutgers is currently 1-2 against the Top 25 in 2013-14, as UConn represents the third ranked foe of the season.
Nov. 29 – vs. #15/17 LSU L, 65-69
Dec. 21 – vs. #16/15 Georgia W, 61-58
Jan. 19 – vs. #1/1 UConn L, 64-94
THE WILL TO SCORE
Rutgers has had three or more Scarlet Knights reach double figures in 14 of the first 19 games of the 2013-14 season.
Sophomore forward Kahleah Copper has reached double figures in 17 of the first 19 games played to date. Copper is the first Scarlet Knights since Epiphanny Prince in the 2006-07 season to start the year off with 11 straight double figure performances. Prince kicked off the 2006-07 national championship game season running away with 11 straight double figure contests.
Copper’s streak came to an end against USF, against which she was 4-of-10 from the field for nine points. However, she has rebounded in the last seven games, scoring at least 20 points five times.
In RU’s last time out, Copper (24), Laney (20), Canty (13) and Hollivay (11) scored in double figures.
LIVING IN THE PAINT
Rutgers scored 42 of its 74 points in the paint its last time out against Temple. RU has scored 30 or more point in the paint in 14 of its last 15 games and 16 times this season. The team has won the points in the paint battle in 16 of 19 games and is 15-1 in those contests.
On the season, Rutgers is averaging 35.5 points in the paint.
Junior forward Betnijah Laney notched her 10th double-double of the season against Temple (Jan. 25), finishing with 20 points and 10 rebounds. She had her double-double streak of seven games snapped against SMU, finishing with eight points and 11 rebounds. Her streak of seven straight was the longest for an RU player in the last 10 years.
Her season total is the most since Kia Vaughn’s 12 double-doubles in the 2006-07 season.
ESSY ON THE D-FENSE
Junior guard Syessence Davis has proved to be invaluable on defense this season. Davis has recorded three or more steals in 12 of the last 15 games, as her 2.7 steals per game average is second in the American.
Davis recorded a career-high seven steals against Wagner on Dec. 12, surpassing her previous best effort of five which was captured on four occasions, most recently at Davidson (Dec. 4).
Syessence Davis has been generous with the ball through the first 19 games of the 2013-14 campaign, averaging 4.5 assists per game. The Neptune, N.J., native has handed out five or more assists in 12 of RU’s 19 games this season.
She tied her season-high of seven assists last time out against UCF, marking the fourth time this year she dished out seven helpers. RU is 4-0 in those contests.
OFF AND RUNNING
The Rutgers women’s basketball team has taken some rather large runs in games this season. The nine runs are listed below in periodically descending order.
Northeasterm - 16-0 - Huskies held scoreless for 7:03
UMass - 10-0 - Minutewomen held scoreless for 4:27
Howard - 10-0 - Bison held scoreless for 1:04
Davidson - 15-0 - Wildcats held scoreless for 7:49
Sacred Heart - 21-0 - Pioneers held scoreless for 9:50
USF - 21-0 - Bulls held scoreless for 8:28
Houston - 12-0- Cougars held scoreless for 4:31
Cincinnati - 20-0-Bearcats held scoreless for 9:05
Temple - 12-0 Owls held scoreless for 2:39
Rutgers led by as many as 34 points at UCF on Jan. 22. RU has held 30+ point leads on five teams this season – (37 - vs. Wagner; 33 - vs. Sacred Heart; 31 – vs. Howard; 31 - at Davidson).
It was the second time the Scarlet Knights had a 30+ point edge against on the road and first against an American opponent this season.
The Rutgers women’s basketball team will welcome Memphis to the RAC for the first time in history. Tipoff is set for 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 1. The game will be broadcast on ESPN3 with Julianne Viani and Jonathan Yardley providing the action.
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