PISCATAWAY, N.J. (March 2, 2014) – The Rutgers women’s basketball team closes out the regular season by hosting USF on Monday, March 3, as both battle for the No. 3 seed at the upcoming American Athletic Conference Tournament. The Scarlet Knights and Bulls will tip-off at 7:30 p.m., with the game airing on the American Digital Network with Tara Petrolino and LaChina Robinson on the call.
While the Scarlet Knights’ roster boasts no seniors, RU’s three senior managers – Lance Ringer, Anthony Lorenzo and Sean Morgan – will be honored prior to the game.
Collect the final trading card of the season. The first 200 fans to the ticket table in the lobby can receive a free Coach C. Vivian Stringer trading card.
A win Monday night would give Rutgers the No. 3 seed for the upcoming American Athletic Conference Tournament. The Scarlet Knights and Bulls aren’t the only two teams jockeying for position though.
UConn and Louisville square off on Monday night. Should the Cardinals defeat the Huskies, both squads would tie for the No. 1 seed and it would go to a coin flip to decide the tournament’s top seed.
SMU and Temple are battling out for fifth and sixth place. Should both end up with the same record, SMU would win the tie break. Both teams enter Monday night at 7-10 overall in league play with SMU taking on UCF and Temple hosting Houston.
Cincinnati and Memphis will settle who will be the No. 7 and the No. 8 seed. They both meet on Monday with the winner take the No. 7 seed.
UCF has clinched the No. 9 seed and Houston will be the No. 10 seed regardless of Monday night outcomes.
• Monday’s American Athletic Conference showdown with USF tips off at 7:30 p.m. (EST) at the RAC. The matchup will close the season series with USF and determine the No. 3 seed for the inaugural American Athletic Conference Championships,
held at Mohegan Sun from March 7-10. The American Digital Network will carry a live broadcast of the game. WCTC and WRSU, Rutgers student radio, will also be on hand to cover the action.
• Rutgers enters the contest at 21-7 overall and 12-5 in the American after losing, 72-35, at No.1/1 UConn. The Scarlet Knights were led by Betnijah Laney, who narrowly missed her 13th double-double of the season with 14 points and nine rebounds.
• Sophomore forward Kahleah Copper leads RU in scoring and field goal percentage. She is sixth in the American with 16.1 points per game and third in the league in field goal percentage (57.1 percent). She did not play last time out against
• Junior Betnijah Laney is averaging just shy of a double-double with 12.6 points and 9.1 rebounds per game. She has scored in double figures 19 times in 26 games played, recording 12 double-doubles in that span.
• Sophomore Rachel Hollivay enters the matchup ninth nationally in blocks per game (3.1). That figure is tops in the American.
At 17-11 overall and 12-5 in the American, USF’s Monday matchup with the Scarlet Knights will determine who obtains the No. 3 seed at the inaugural American Athletic Conference Championships next weekend at Mohegan Sun.
The Bulls dismantled SMU, 72-51, their last time out for their fourth-straight win, as sophomore guard Courtney Williams dropped 26 points to lead all scorers. USF shot just 36.9 percent from the field, but got to the free throw line 25 times, sinking 20 attempts.
The squad boasts the No. 3 scoring offense in the league behind No. 1/1 UConn and No. 3/3 Louisville, scoring 68.1 points per game. USF also holds the third-best free-throw percentage in the conference, shooting at a 69.1 percent clip, while holding opponents to just 36.0 percent shooting.
Williams leads the Bulls and is seventh in the American with 16.0 points per game, just behind RU’s Kahleah Copper. Meanwhile, sophomore forward Alisia Jenkins leads the league with 10.3 rebounds per game. Inga Orekhova is the only other Bull to average double figure scoring this season at 10.4 points per game. She has converted the third-most 3-pointers (58) in the conference at a 37.4 shooting clip.
ALL-TIME SERIES WITH USF
RU leads the all-time series over USF, 8-2, after topping the Bulls on their home court, 66-53, earlier this season. Both of the Scarlet Knights’ losses to the Bulls in the series have come by exactly three points, as RU looks to put together its third multi-game win streak all-time against USF.
The Scarlet Knights opened up this conference season with USF at the Sun Dome, where Junior forward Betnijah Laney registered her seventh double-double of the year and fifth-straight, leading the Scarlet Knights with 18 points, 13 rebounds and five assists. Freshman guard Tyler Scaife notched 14 points in the win.
Rutgers broke open the game on a 21-0 run in the first half and held USF to only one field goal in the final 10:14 of the opening stanza.
Rutgers is won one win away from tying the program’s highest win total (22) over the past six seasons. The team won 22 games in 2010-11 and 21 in 2008-09.
Next stop for the Scarlet Knights is March Madness.
2014 AMERICAN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE WOMEN’S BASKETBALL CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE
Game 1: Fri. Mar 7 – No. 9 vs. No. 8 – 6 p.m. (ESPN3)
Game 2: Fri. Mar. 7 – No. 7 vs. No. 10 – 8 p.m. (ESPN3)
Game 3: Sat. Mar. 8 – No. 4 vs. No. 5 – Noon (ESPN3)
Game 4: Sat. Mar. 8 – No. 1 vs. Winner Game 1 – 2 p.m. (ESPN3)
Game 5: Sat. Mar. 8 – No. 2 vs. Winner Game 2 – 6 p.m. (ESPN3)
Game 6: Sat. Mar. 8 - No. 3 vs. No. 6 – 8 p.m. (ESPN3)
Game 7: Sun. Mar. 9 – Winner Game 3 vs. Winner Game 4 – 1 p.m. (ESPNU)
Game 8: Sun. Mar. 8 – Winner Game 5 vs. Winner Game 6 – 3 p.m. (ESPNU)
Game 9: Mon. Mar. 10 – Winner Game 7 vs. Winner Game 8 – 7 p.m. (ESPN/ESPN2)
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