RADIO: Lady Razorback Radio Network (CST); 6:40 p.m. pregame; 2:00 tipoff
KABZ (103.7 FM), Little Rock (LIVE-JIP)
KBNV (90.1 FM), Fayetteville-Springdale (LIVE)
KHOZ (900 AM), Harrison (LIVE)
INTERNET: LADYBACKS.COM; free audio stream; Pay-per-view video stream
ARKANSAS LADY RAZORBACKS (4-1, 0-0 SEC)
F/P 1 Kristin Moore 6-1 JR Chicago, Ill. (John Hope) 8.4 6.6
F 14 Danielle Allen 6-0 SO Harrison, AR (Harrison) 9.2 4.8
G 4 Kristin Peoples 5-7 SO Westerville, OH (Brookhaven) 14.0 1.8 4.4s
G 12 Sheree Thompson 5-10 JR McComb, MS (NW-Shoals) 7.2 3.8 4.2s
G 21 Rochelle Vaughn 5-9 JR Plano, TX (Plano West) 10.2 2.2 3.2a
OFF THE BENCH
P 11 Kristina Andjelkovic 6-2 JR Belgrade, Serbia (Chipola JC) 1.5 0.5
P 55 Ruby Vaden 6-3 JR Osceola, Ark, (High) 6.4 2.2
F 32 Christina Lawrence 6-0 FR Sullivan, MO (High) 0.0 0.0
F 33 Sarah Pfeifer 6-0 SO Ozark, Ark. (High) 4.0 2.6
G 15 Allison Singleton 5-5 SR Fort Smith, AR (Southside) 0.0 0.0
G 22 April Seggebruch 5-10 SR Cissna Park, IL (Wabash Valley) 5.2 3.0
G 25 Brittney Vaughn 5-7 FR Plano, TX (Plano West) 6.0 2.8 2.5a
G 44 Adrienne Bush 5-8 SR Russellville, AR (High/SMS) 3.0 1.0
ELIGIBLE AT MIDTERM
G/F 23 Melissa Hobbs 6-0 JR Woodward, OK (High/Colo.)
HEAD COACH: Susie Gardner (Second year at Arkansas, 20-13; eighth overall, 132-105)
INDIANA HOOSIERS (2-1, 0-0 Big 10)
G 3 Cyndi Valentin 5-8 JR Bloomington, IN (South) 12.7 3.7
G 20 LeeAnn Stephenson 5-6 SR Garland, TX (Lincoln Trail CC) 6.7 1.7
C 30 Angela Hawkins 6-3 JR Winter Haven, FL (High) 4.0 7.7
G 31 Leah Enterline 5-9 SO Monroeville, IN (Heritage) 5.3 3.3
F 54 Jamie Gathing 6-0 SR Kankakee, IL (High) 5.0 5.7
OFF THE BENCH
G 4 Nikki Smith 5-9 FR Sylvania, OH (Northview) 2.0 1.3
G 13 Annika Boyd 5-10 SO Minneapolis, MN (Minnehaha) 6.7 1.7
G 24 Kali Kullberg 5-8 JR Orono, MN (High) 1.5 0.5
C 32 Sarah McKay 6-7 SO Victoria, BC (Stelly’s Secondary) 6.0 6.7
F 44 Carrie Smith 6-1 SO Indianapolis, IN (Brebeuf Jesuit) 1.0 0.5
F 45 Brigett Branson 6-2 JR Bloomingdale, IN (Turkey Run) 3.7 1.3
INJURED, OUT FOR SEASON
G 14 Jenny DeMuth 5-10 SR Highland, IN (High)
HEAD COACH: Kathi Bennett (Fifth year at Indiana, 64-58; 16th overall, 288-161)
ABOUT THE GAME: The long week continues for Arkansas as the Lady Razorbacks face their second game at Walton Arena in a three-game, six-day span. The Hoosiers make their first-ever appearance in the Natural State. While the season is six games old for Arkansas on Wednesday, Indiana plays only its fourth game of the year. Defense dominates both squads offense which either leads to a 40-30 finish or the two cancel out for a up-and-down shootout.
ABOUT THE LADY RAZORBACKS: Susie Gardner begins her second season at Arkansas with one of the most interesting rosters in the past decade. Arkansas returns four starters from a 16-12 team, and picks up two more potential starters that missed virtually all of 2003-04 with injury. At the same time, the Lady’Backs have only three seniors with a combined varsity experience of a season and a half at Arkansas.
ABOUT THE HOOSIERS: Indiana returns all five starters from last year’s team that finished 12-17 overall for Coach Kathi Bennett. The Hoosiers are off to a 2-1 start, sweeping through their own tournament this past Saturday and Sunday. Defense dominates the IU philosophy, but a half-court style. Last year’s leading scorer, Jenny DeMuth, is out for the year with a torn ACL, but the second leading scorer, Cyndi Valentin, is averaging 12.7 ppg, along with the other three returning starters.
DEE-E-E-E-FENSE: Arkansas and Indiana bring two of the most potent defenses in the nation to Walton Arena Wednesday night. The Hoosier are allowing only 39.3 ppg to their opponents, a figure that could lead the nation (FYI — Vanderbilt leads the SEC at 43.8 ppg, Arkansas is sixth at 58.8 ppg). Meanwhile, the Lady’Backs are forcing 37.6 turnovers from its opponents and sport an obscene +15.88 turnover margin that leads the SEC.
COACH G’s D STRIKES AGAIN: Susie Gardner told everyone that would listen that this year’s team would need its defense to carry the day and drive the offense. For the third consecutive game, Arkansas pumped 40 turnovers from an opponent at Walton Arena and broke the school record for steals for the second time this year with 29.
THEY CAN’T WIN IF THEY CAN’T SCORE: Indiana survived a 19% first half that produced only 11 points against Central Michigan to rally for a 42-32 in the the title game of the Hoosiers’ home tournament Sunday. Indiana‘s opponents are hitting only 24.8% from the field. Most notable in this was Indiana‘s effort in the Hoosiers’ season-starting loss at Baylor. Indiana held the high-powered Bears to a mere 29% (17-for-59) at their house.
THE IMMOVABLE OBJECT VS. THE IRRESISTIBLE OBJECT, PART DEUX: When Arkansas met Purdue, it was a highly contrasting offensive styles that went to the Big 10 Boilermakers by four points, 55-51. Wednesday, battling defensive powers meet with Indiana. The Hoosiers are clamping down in the halfcourt — 24.8% from the field, 7.0 blocked shots per game.
MONSTER OF THE MIDWAY: Indiana‘s Sarah McKay has come off the bench to block 10 shots in the first three games this year, pulling down 6.7 rebounds per game to lead the Hoosiers despite playing only 18.3 minutes per game. McKay was next to unstoppable for Arkansas at Bloomington last year, sinking 9-of-11 shots for 18 points. The 6-7 sophomore is the tallest post player Arkansas has faced so far this season.
FIVE STARTERS, THREE STEAL HIGHS: Arkansas‘ five starters against Western Kentucky combined for 26 of the school-record 29 steals versus the Lady Toppers. Leading the way was Kristin Moore with a career shattering eight steals (previous of one several times) and Kristin Peoples with a career-tying six. Rochelle Vaughn was off her career best by two with five versus WKU. Sheree Thompson was next with four and Danielle Allen had her career high with three.
FROM A WHISPER TO A SCREAM: Arkansas shot only 25.6% (10-of-39) in the first half and dug itself a 15-point hole versus Western Kentucky. In the second half, 51.4% off 18-of-35 as the Lady’Backs outscored WKU 52-38 to swing the final margin 19 points. Arkansas missed its first seven field goal attempts of the game, then went a miserable 1-of-13. Sparked by Kristin Moore in the late first half, the offense began to turn and finish the game by shooting 27-of-61 after the poor start.
TOPPING THE SEC CHARTS: Arkansas‘ high-pressure defense might have relaxed a bit with Idaho State — season lows with "only" 27 turnovers and 17 steals — the Lady’Backs lead the Southeastern Conference in steals and turnover margin. The Lady’Backs average 23.4 steals, a good seven more per game than the nearest team, Florida, and have a whopping +15.9 turnover margin.
BEST STEAL MARKS IN THE LEAGUE: Arkansas is No. 1 (29, Western Kentucky) and No. 2 (28, Centenary) for most steals in any game in the SEC to go with the league-leading steal mark. Individually, Sheree Thompson (8, Centenary) and Kristin Moore (8, Western Kentucky) are tied with Loree Moore of Tennessee (8 vs. Chattanooga) for the best single game.
STEALING AWAY: With 117 steals in five games, the Lady’Backs have as many total steals as the next two teams in the SEC rankings — Vanderbilt and Florida — combined. In fact, one could add just about any two SEC teams together except LSU (who has played seven games and has 83 total) not equal Arkansas‘ start.
SWEEP OF THE SEC STEAL RANKINGS: They key to a +15.88 turnover ratio is powerful guard play and lots of steals. Arkansas sweeps the top three spots in the SEC this week, led by Kristin Peoples with 4.48 per game. Sheree Thompson and Rochelle Vaughn tie for second in the league at 4.28. On the strength of her career high eight steals, Kristin Moore jumps into the SEC top 10 at eighth.
POINT GUARDS BEWARE: For the third time in five games, Arkansas forced nine or more turnovers from the opponent. Twice this season, Arkansas has gotten a double out the opponent point guard — 10 by Idaho State‘s Camile Michaelson and 10 from Laura Kizyte of Centenary. The turnover low for an opponent point guard is seven (against seven assists) for Tifany Zaragoza of Western Kentucky.
LAST MEETING WITH INDIANA: Arkansas 78, Indiana 70
Shameka Christon’s 28 points were great, but her two assists down the stretch were the key to Arkansas‘ first-ever appearance at Assembly Hall. Christon took control with 16 of Arkansas‘ 17 points in a nine-minute stretch. IU matched Christon goal-for-goal before two April Seggebruch free throws and a stick-back by Ruby Vaden put UA up 66-60. Playing with four fouls, Christon dished to Rochelle Vaughn for a trey then to Seggebruch also for a three to ice the game in the closing minute. Kristin Peoples added a season high 13 points.
WKU GAME WINNER TO ROCHELLE VAUGHN: With the game tied at 79-79 against Western Kentucky, Rochelle Vaughn took a short pass from Kristin Peoples, cut into the lane and stroked the game winner with 16 seconds left in the contest.
CAREER BESTS ABOUND WITH WESTERN: Kristin Peoples tied two (points, 18; steals, 6), and Kristin Moore broke one (steals, 8) against Western Kentucky. Moore also missed her career scoring high by only two points with 17. Kristina Andjekovic set her early Arkansas bests with eight points and three rebounds. Danielle Allen broke her steal best with four.
MOORE BREAKS ARENA STEAL RECORD: Kristen Moore’s eight steals broke the previous mark of seven at Bud Walton Arena set by Stephanie Bloomer back in 1994 versus Oral Roberts.
THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME: Arkansas is undefeated this season at Walton Arena with a three-game win streak. Arkansas also has a 25-game streak at home against unranked teams, and an 18-game streak against non-conference teams.
NOTES ON PREVIOUS ARKANSAS GAMES
ALL THE YEAR IN ONE GAME: After a meager two three-pointers in the opening two games, Arkansas had more than its season in one game with #13 Purdue. Arkansas hit 6-of-19 from behind the arc.
HAVE SOME BOILED TURNOVERS: After a 43 turnover average in the first two games, Arkansas proved its defensive pressure wasn’t a fluke by forcing 34 turnovers and picking up 19 stals from #13 Purdue in the opening round of the TAMU-CC tournament.
DEFENSE CLAMPS DOWN ON PURDUE: Afer giving up 42.4% in the first half and a 34-29 halftime deficit, Arkansas held #13 Purdue to only 27.3% from the field and a mere 21 second half points.
A GAME OF RUNS: Purdue and Arkansas traded leads and streaks in a defense-dominated matchup. The Boilermakers’ 15-3 shortly after tipoff was matched by 16-2 by Arkansas. After half, each went on mini-runs to lead by five points. Unfortunately for Arkansas, Purdue got the last run with a 6-0 burst in the final minute.
WE CALL IT AN OFFENSIVE COMA: Any time a team goes more than three minutes without scoring, that’s an offensive coma. Arkansas‘ field goal shooting lasped with a layup by Kristin Peoples at the 8:23 mark left in the Purdue game as the Lady’Backs had only three free throws the rest of the game.
GIVING ALMOST AS GOOD AS THEY GET: Purdue had its own offensive coma against the Arkansas defense, going 4:16 down the stretch without a point to give the Lady’Backs the lead, 48-43. The Boilermakers went a total of 6:38 without a field goal — only a pair of free throws — which overlapped the start of Arkansas‘ game-ending drought.
WNBA TRYOUT: Defense dominates the American pro league, and that certainly was the case as #15 Purdue and Arkansas combined for one field goal in the final 4:45 of a 55-51 contest.
STEAL RECORD FALLS WITH CENTENARY: After almost taking the school record for steals against Alabama State with 24, the Lady’Backs turned around less than 36 hours later to break the record with 28 against Centenary.
BALANCED SCORING STARTS SEASON: In the first two games for Arkansas, five different players have been in double digits and two different players lead the team in scoring and rebounding each contest. So far, four players are in double digits — Danielle Allen (14.5), Kristin Peoples (11.5), Ruby Vaden (11.5) and Rochelle Vaughn (10.0) — and nine are in double digit minutes.
TIME ON OUR SIDE: The key to Arkansas‘ new open-court system is timely substitution (just ask the players). As the Lady’Backs run all-out, Susie Gardner has been working subs to keep the intensity level high. The result — no player averaging over 30 minutes (April Seggebruch is tops at 28.5) but nine over 10 minutes (10 if you round up Sarah Pfeifer’s 9.5).
TEAM EFFORT IN OPENER: Arkansas had scoring from 10 of 11 Lady’Backs that played against Alabama State and eight players led or co-led the team in a statistical category.
DIFFERENCE A HALF CAN MAKE: The Lady’Backs shot 21 free throws each half against Alabama State, but Arkansas hit only 38.1% from the line to start, then made 61.9% in the second.
THAT’S A FOUL START: Alabama State came within two of the Walton Arena mark for opponent personal fouls, and saw two starters leave early with five. It led Arkansas to the line for 42 free throws, one shy of the arena record.
WE LIKE INSECT TURNOVERS FOR MORE PROTEIN: The Alabama State Lady Hornets committed 45 turnovers against Arkansas in the season opener for both teams, breaking a 14-year-old Lady Razorback school record. The Murray State Lady Racers set the mark at 43 turnovers in December 1990. It also set a new Bud Walton Arena mark, surpassing the 40 committed by Southeastern Louisiana in 2000.
BUT IT’S WHAT YOU DO WITH THE TURNOVERS THAT COUNTS: Arkansas had a whopping +24 turnover margin against Alabama State, including a +14 first-half spread. But Arkansas led ASU by only four, 34-30, at halftime thanks to an inability to convert 24 Hornet mistakes into points. Arkansas had only 15 points off turnovers in the first half. That changed dramatically in the second as 21 Alabama State errors led to 23 Arkansas points.
NEAR MISS ON STEAL RECORD: The 24 steals against Alabama State by the Lady’Backs came within one of the Bud Walton Arena and two of the overall school record.
20 IN A ROW IN THE HOME OPENER: Arkansas‘ record-setting defensive effort against Alabama State gave the Lady Razorbacks their 20th straight home opener, and moved the record in the first home game to 28-1 all-time.
SMALLER, FASTER LADY’BACKS: Expect an emphasis on the open court this season from Arkansas, starting with preseason practices. Susie Gardner indicated the team will press more this year, and might start practice sessions working defense first to take advantage of the team’s enhanced conditioning and 14-player roster.
KRISTIN MOORE — #1
CAREER HIGH STEALS, NEAR CAREER POINTS: While the rest of the team struggled in the first half with Western Kentucky, Kristin Moore kept Arkansas in striking distance with 4-of-5 from the field. In the second half, her steals and consistant play helped lead the comeback. By the end, Moore had 17 points — two off her career best — and a whopping eight steals.
THE QUIET ONE DOING HER QUIET THING: Arkansas‘ leading rebounder through the first games of the season, Kristin Moore is providing a steady scoring hand and defensive ability in the new pressure system.
KRISTIN PEOPLES — #4
FLINT HILLS RESOURCES ISLANDER CLASSIC ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
PEOPLES NAMED ALL-TOURNAMENT AT TAMU-CC: Sophomore guard Kristin Peoples led Arkansas in scoring against Purdue and Idaho State, and was named to the Flint Hills Resources All-Tournament team. It is her first tournament honor of her career at Arkansas. Notable among her performance for the Thanksgiving event was five unanswered points — a three-point goal followed by a steal and two free throws when fouled on the ensuing breakaway — to ice the consolation title against Idaho State.
PEOPLES THE PLAYMAKER: Kristin Peoples had a then-season high 15 points against Idaho State, but more important hit five unanswered points in the last 90 seconds of the game to prevent any Bengal comeback. Pulling back within four points in the last two minutes of the game, Peoples cranked a three-pointer to give Arkansas a seven-point lead, 63-56. On ISU’s next possession, Peoples picked Christa Brossman for a steal and took off for the basket. Molly Hays’ foul saved the breakaway layup, but Peoples sank both free throws with 1:18 to play and a nine-point, 65-56, Arkansas lead.
GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS FOR PEOPLES: Kristin Peoples had one of her best offensive games with 4-of-5 from the field, 2-of-2 from the trey and 4-of-5 at the line to lead Arkansas with 14 points against #13 Purdue. The downside was only two assists against a season-high nine turnovers.
KRISTINA ANDJELKOVIC — #11
SEASON, CAREER BESTS WITH WESTERN: Kristina Andjekovic was Arkansas‘ top player off the bench against Western Kentucky, scoring eight points off 3-of-4 from the field with three rebounds and a steal in only 11 minutes played.
KEEP YOUR CH(K)RISTINA’S STRAIGHT: Joining Arkansas’ Kristins are a pair of Christina’s — two-sport freshman Christina Lawrence and junior college transfer Kristina Andjelkovic. While the first names sound the same, take a little time to work on your Serbian — an-JELL-koh-VITCH.
SHEREE THOMPSON — #12
THE BASF OF GUARDS: Sheree Thompson doesn’t make the Arkansas defense, she makes the defense work better. In her first two games, the junior college transfer has shown exactly what Arkansas missed last season with her sidelined due to ACL surgery. Averaging 5.5 steals, 4.0 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 5.5 points in the first two games, Thompson’s open-court skills include the classic "things that don’t show up on the box score." Several times, her trap or her scramble move led to a turnover that either wasn’t creditable as a steal or went to the player who possessed the ball.
THOMPSON PICKS UP ANOTHER BEST: Sheree Thompson dished out eight assists for a new career high in the win over Idaho State, and with her nine points against the Bengals came close to her first double. The eight assists is a team best this season.
CLASS RECORD TIED FOR THOMPSON: Sheree Thompson’s eight steals — six in the first half alone — against Centenary tied the UA junior class record for steals. Angela Davis set the mark with eight back in 1991.
DANIELLE ALLEN — #14
NOT A BAD 45 MINUTES: Through the first two games of her sophomore year, Danielle Allen has scored 29 points in 45 minutes played with 11 rebounds. Last year, in 27 games and 247 minutes, the 6-0 forward had 30 points.
CAREER HIGH BOARDS FOR ALLEN: With a near double-double of nine points and in rebounds, Danielle Allen broke her freshman best for rebounds (6) against Centenary.
30 POINTS IN A SEASON, 20 POINTS IN A NIGHT: By the end of the first half, sophomore Danielle Allen had more than surpassed her freshman season high of five points with eight against Alabama State. Five minutes into the second half, Allen scored eight of Arkansas‘ opening 10 points, and had tripled her career best. With a total of 20 points off 9-of-11 from the field, Allen scored in one game 2/3rds of what she amassed in 27 games as a freshman.
ALLISON SINGLETON — #15
NOT YOUR AVERAGE RUDY STORY: While it’s true that Allison Singleton is living out her dream season as a senior after three years as a manager for the Lady’Backs, the 5-5 guard isn’t a Rudy-like last game of the season fluke for playing time. Seeing court time in two of the first four games this year, Susie Gardner looked down the bench for Singleton at crunch time late in the game against Idaho State for a defensive spark.
ROCHELLE VAUGHN — #21
TRIPLE IN SIGHT: Rochelle Vaughn got within striking distance of a triple-double in the Athletes in Action game, hitting 10 points with eight rebounds and six assists. She hit the eight rebound mark midway through the second half, making it seem she’d at least come away with the double. For her career, Vaughn has a double-double with points and assists, but has not had the rebound double. She had 11 points with 10 assists in last year’s win over Georgia.
APRIL SEGGEBRUCH — #22
ALL AROUND GAME FOR SEGGEBRUCH: April Seggebruch came off the bench for five points, but her near-career high five rebounds, career tying four steals and two assists gave the senior guard one of her better all-around performances in 25 minutes against Alabama State. Notable was her three-pointer, Arkansas‘ final trey attempt of the night, which avoided a school-record tying mark for long range futility (Arkansas has been 0-for on threes in three games all-time).
MELISSA HOBBS — #23
REMEMBER, HOBBS ON ICE UNTIL DECEMBER: The Red-White Game was the last time fans will see Melissa Hobbs on the court until the Louisiana-Lafayette game on Dec. 16. The midterm transfer from Colorado is eligible after the end of the fall semester.
BRITTANY VAUGHN — #25
SEPARATE YOUR VAUGHNS: Sisters Rochelle and Brittney Vaughn suit up for the Lady Razorbacks this season, and while freshman Brittney is wearing her junior sister Rochelle’s rookie season number (25) they are very different personalities on and off the court.
CHRISTINA LAWRENCE — #32
PLAYING TIME IN SECOND GAME: Christina Lawrence signed to be a two-sport athlete at Arkansas, but a high school injury led to her redshirting the volleyball season this fall. She has touched the court in game two for the Lady’Back basketball team, picking up four minutes and some shots against Centenary.
SARAH PFEIFER — #33
SHOULDER LIMITS PFEIFER’S TIME: Redshirt sophomore Sarah Pfeifer is having trouble with her non-surgery shoulder, and the staff plans to limit her practice contact to enhance her playing time over the next weeks.
A ONE-TWO COMBO AT FOUR: Sarah Pfeifer came off the bench to score 17 points with seven rebounds against Everyone’s Internet as Danielle Allen had eight points and eight rebounds as the starter. The pair of sophomores could become a dynamic duo at the high post this season. In the Red-White Game, scoring was reversed with Allen turning in 23 points and Pfeifer had 12.
ADRIENNE BUSH — #44
EARLY BEST WITH WESTERN: After not playing since the season opener, Adrienne Bush worked her way into the Western Kentucky game and did more than create defensive mayheim. The senior guard known for her tough defense provided some timely offense with six points — 1-of-2 from the field and drawing three shooting fouls hit 4-of-6 at the line.
NOT THE START ON THE SEASON YOU WANT: Adrienne Bush didn’t last a minute in the season opener, hitting the court hard against Alabama State after some rough contact in the lane. The concussion she suffered sidelined her for the Centenary game and limited her practice time for the next week.
RUBY VADEN — #55
MODEL OF EFFICIENCY: Ruby Vaden came off the bench to score 18 points in only 13 minutes off 8-of-11 from the floor against Centenary.
VADEN VOTED PRESEASON ALL-SEC: Junior post Ruby Vaden was voted second team all-SEC in the first-ever SEC preseason all-conference team. Voted on by the coaches prior to the start of the annual media day, Vaden was one of 17 players named to the preseason squad.
THERE IS NO PLACE LIKE HOME: Fayetteville, Ark., ranks as the 14th toughest road trip in Division I women’s basketball according to Louisiana Tech’s annual survey of home court winning percentage. Arkansas has a 79.94% winning mark in Fayetteville, and is the third toughest home court in the Southeastern Conference. Ruston, La., is No. 1 at 94.51%, followed by Knoxville, Tenn., at 91.37%. Oxford, Miss., is ranked 11th, and second in the SEC. Notable tough towns behind Fayetteville: Athens, Ga. (22nd), Springfield, Mo. (28th),
SOME THINGS NEVER CHANGE — STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE TOP 20: Arkansas‘ schedule gets the #19 spot on the preseason RPI strength of schedule issued by Rich Summerville and the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association. Summerville’s RPI — considered for years one of the most accurate predictors of the NCAA committee’s own rating percentage index — has Arkansas at 19th thanks in part to the Lady’Backs facing the No. 1 RPI Tennessee Lady Vols and the #7 RPI LSU Tigers twice this season. In fact, half of the SEC is in the top 25: 1) UT, 5) Florida, 7) LSU, 9) Auburn, 18) Miss State, 19) Arkansas, 25) Alabama. Rounding out the league: 31) Vanderbilt, 37) Georgia, 39) Ole Miss, 48) South Carolina, 54) Kentucky.
SHAMEKA CHRISTON UPDATE: The 2004 SEC Player of the Year and 2004 WNBA Rookie Team member Shameka Christon has taken her game overseas. After helping the New York Liberty into the WNBA playoffs, Christon has joined the defending Women’s Division I champion of the Israeli pro league, Elizur Ramla. Christon is competing with fellow Liberty teammate Crystal Robinson. Four games into the Israeli league’s season (as of Nov. 15), Christon is the team’s No. 2 scorer with 16.2 ppg, turning in 29 to lead Elizur Ramla to a 44-point rout of Maccabi Ashdod on Nov. 15.
PRESEASON SEC POLL HAS ARKANSAS TIED FOR NINTH: The Lady Razorbacks were voted ninth in the preseason media poll conducted at the annual SEC Media Days. There were 11 media voters that gave both Arkansas and Alabama 101 points each in the balloting. Tennessee was the near-consensus pick at No. 1 with nine first place votes and 13 overall. LSU had the other two first place votes and 23. Vanderbilt was third, Georgia fourth, Auburn fifth and Florida sixth. Ole Miss and Miss State tied for seventh at 80 each. Kentucky and South Carolina rounded out the poll.
PRACTICE SCHEDULE FOR THE FALL SEMESTER: Practice is set for 1 p.m.-3:30 p.m. for the first weeks of practice, Tuesday is the off day.
BRERETON SIGNS WITH LADY’BACKS: Angleton, Texas, guard-forward Ayana Brereton has signed her National Letter of Intent to play women’s basketball at the University of Arkansas. Considered one of the top basketball athletes in the state of Texas, the 5-10 swing forward is ranked 14th among all Texas seniors according TexasHoops.com, she was one of three top 20 players to leave the state of Texas according to the recruiting website. She helped lead Angleton to the regional quarterfinals last season and a 26-5 record for head coach Melissa Hernandez. Her AAU team, the Houston Hotshots, came home this summer with a pair of national trophies, the 2004 BCI national championship and the AAU national championship runners-up. Brereton averaged 15 ppg and 7.8 rpg at forward for the Ladycats as a junior. Her sophomore season she averaged 13.7 ppg, 7 rpg and 2.4 steals as the Ladycats went 30-4 in 2003, captured the district championship and reached the state semifinals She was a double-digit scorer even as a freshman with 10 ppg and 6.3 rpg in 2002 for another state semifinal finish by the Ladycats. The most valuable player for Brazoria County last season, Brereton is a two-time District 24-4A defensive player of the year and three-time all-district. The district’s newcomer of the year her freshman season, she’s also a three-time academic all-district selection. Named to the Texas Girls Coaches Association 2004 all-state team and second-team all-state by the TABC as a junior, she’s a three-time all-region pick by TABC. Great two-sport athlete, Brereton was the Region III 4-A runner-up in both long jump and triple jump last year, and posted junior season bests of 18-7 _ for the long and 40-4 ¬ for the triple jump. At the UIL state meet, she was the state runner-up in the triple jump and third in the long. One of only two athletes to break the 40-foot mark at the state meet in the triple, it looked like Brereton had the state title until she was passed on the second-to-last round. Her triple jump best improved two feet last season, and she heads into the spring as one of the favorites to take the state triple jump title for Class AAAA.
JONES MAKES IT TWO SIGNEES FOR EARLY PERIOD: Blytheville forward Whitney Jones signed with Arkansas on the final day of the early signing period. The 6-0 forward joins 5-10 swing guard Ayana Brereton of Angleton, Texas, in Gardner‘s 2005 recruiting class. Averaging 21 ppg in the first games of her senior season, Jones turned in 17 ppg and 11 rpg as a junior for head coach Melissa Young at Blytheville. Jones comes from an athletic family, and becomes the first daughter of a Lady Razorback to sign at Arkansas in women’s basketball. Her mother, Diann Ousley Jones, was the first track and field national champion for the Lady’Backs, taking the national indoor 600-yard championship in 1979. Her mark of 1:21.22 remains the school record for the retired event. Jones’ oldest sister, Wendlyn, played in the Final Four last season for LSU and is a returning junior starter for the second-ranked Lady Tigers. Sister Audrey currently plays for Xavier of New Orleans. Jones ran track her sophomore season for the Chickasaws, finishing third in the 100 meters at the Eastern Conference meet in 2003.
NEXT LUNCHEON NOV. 22: Susie Gardner hosts the Lady’Back basketball luncheons at the Clarion Inn in Fayetteville (I-540, exit 62). Luncheons are $8.50, and start at 11:30 a.m. The luncheons will be on Mondays during the season this year. Coach Gardner and the staff invites you out to learn more about the team.
IT’S ON LADYBACKS.COM: Video highlights from each pre-game press conference, after each game at Walton Arena and clips from the coaches’ luncheons can be viewed daily at LADYBACKS.COM. The premium video content is free during this first season of the new and improved LADYBACKS.COM for our ALL-ACCESS subscribers. We encourage media to sign up for the ALL-ACCESS package and to utilize the posted clips and quotes.
PHOTO PLATFORM ACCESS VIA LADYBACKS.COM: Media needing high resolution images — action and mug shots — of Lady Razorback athletes can download them via LADYBACKS.COM. Please contact Bill Smith or any member of the Women’s Communication Office for instructions on how to access the high resolution (1.5 – 2.0 mb) versions of all website images.
LADY RAZORBACK TV: The Women’s Athletics Department begins its second season with a department-wide television magazine hosted by the Lady Razorback head coaches. The show airs across the state at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday mornings. Lady Razorback TV airs in northwest Arkansas on KPBI, Fox 46-15, and in Little Rock on KYPX, the Pax television affiliate. The show re-airs on Sunday mornings in northwest Arkansas on KFDF, UPN, at 11:00 a.m and in central Arkansas on KYPX, the Pax television affiliate, a 11:30 p.m. Lady Razorback TV is brought to you by Adidas, Tyson, CRI and the Lady Razorback Foundation.
TURN YOUR RADIO ON: Welcome back to the Lady Razorback Radio Network for the 16th consecutive season. All Arkansas women’s basketball games are broadcast home and road over the statewide LRRN, as well as on the internet via LADYBACKS.COM. Making his debut this season as the play-by-play voice of the Lady Razorbacks is Preston Lewis. Returning for his 16th year of color for the Lady’Backs is Bill Smith.
KBNV 90.1 FM Fayetteville/Springdale/Rogers/Bentonville
KABZ 103.7 FM Little Rock/Central Arkansas
KHOZ 900 AM Harrison
Check your local affiliate for updates on start times or occasional tape delays for local programing.