Women's Basketball Hosting Missouri Saturday
Dec. 28, 2012
Game Sponsor Evolve Bank & Trust will be giving away one 37-inch VIZIO Class LCD/HDTV to a lucky fan at halftime. All fans will receive a raffle ticket on entry to the game and we will draw the winner at halftime.
The University of Memphis women's basketball team (6-5) will host Missouri (11-2) in a non-conference clash Saturday at 2 p.m. in the Elma Roane Fieldhouse.
Tigers vs. Missouri
This is just the 13th meeting between Memphis and Missouri and is the fourth straight season the two teams have squared off. Missouri leads the overall series, 7-5, on the strength of back to back wins in the last two seasons, including a 58-48 win in Columbia last season. This will be the Missouri Tigers' first visit to the Elma Roane Fieldhouse since Jan. 2, 1994. The last meeting between the two teams was played at FedExForum, the NBA home of the Memphis Grizzlies. Memphis leads the series in games played in Memphis, 3-2.
Memphis will be preparing for the Missouri version of the Tigers out by the three-point line, where the Missouri Tigers lead the country with over 10 made three-point field goals a game. In 13 games, Morgan Eye has already drilled 47 triples on 102 attempts. Teammate Maddie Stock also has the green light to shoot, hitting 24 of 63 attempts from beyond the arc. Missouri has five players with double-digit triples already this year, helping the team hit 130 of 360 tries for a 36.1 percent clip to lead the nation. That offense will be facing a Memphis defense that has been burned from beyond the arc early in the season. Of the 343 ranked teams in NCAA Division I in three-point field goal defense, the Tigers are ranked 307th, allowing opponents to hit 34.6 percent from beyond the arc.
December 29th -- Historically
Memphis is 5-5 in games played on December 29th. The Tigers are 1-0 on December 29th under Melissa McFerrin's leadership -- a 62-34 win over McNeese State in 2010, McFerrin's third season at Memphis.
Facing the Ole Alma Mater
This is the fourth time that Melissa McFerrin will be facing her alma mater. When McFerrin took over the Memphis program in 2008-09, she added her alma mater to the Tigers' schedule for the next four seasons. For three of those meetings, Missouri has been a member of the Big 12. This will be the first meeting between the two teams with Mizzou as a member of the SEC. Memphis in its last season in Conference USA, having accepted an invitation to join the BIG EAST beginning with the 2013-14 season.
McFerrin got a win in her first trip back home to Columbia in 2009, 75-74. But the last two meetings have gone to the Missouri Tigers, including a 58-48 win over Memphis in Columbia last season. The two programs have another tie -- this one in Israel. Former Memphis Tiger Brittany Carter and former Missouri Tiger Christine Flores are now teammates in Israel playing for Galil Elion. Their team is currently in third place in the Israeli Division 1 women's league and Flores was the Eurobasket.com Player of the Week for round 8. Carter hit the game-winning bucket in Memphis' win at Missouri in 2009 and Flores scored her 1,000th career point against Memphis last season.
Stop Me If You Heard This Before -- Career Highs in Win at Seton Hall
With eight new players and with just one returning starter in the lineup at Seton Hall, it should be no surprise that there have been lots of career highs already this season. In the win at Seton Hall, freshman point guard Ariel Hearn tallied her first career 20-plus point game, finishing with 22, while forward Asianna Fuqua-Bey provided some energy off the bench in the form of a career-high 14 points. Those career best performances bookended another 20-point performance from Nicole Dickson. Dickson has now scored 20 or more points in five of Memphis' 11 games so far this season, including a trio of 30-plus point outings.
Bringing that Winning Feeling Back Home
Memphis lost just one game in the Elma Roane Fieldhouse last season. So far this season, the Tigers have already lost three non-conference games (Prairie View A&M, UALR and Illinois). While the home team will have its hands full trying to right the ship this weekend against Missouri and a rejuvenated Tennessee Tech program, it may have a road map to success in place. The young Tigers from Memphis have gone and picked up four road wins already this season, winning at Illinois State (who just beat Illinois), Texas-Arlington, Saint Louis and at BIG EAST foe Seton Hall. With no more non-conference road games on the slate, the Tigers will wrap up the season with a 4-2 non-conference road record. Those losses were at Middle Tennessee and at East Tennessee State.
Out of 343 ranked NCAA Division I teams in the country, Memphis ranks No. 332 in personal fouls per game with 20.8 whistles a night. Getting to the free throw line is a part of the Tigers' plans, but so far this year, the Tigers are giving up almost four more attempts at the line to the opponents (22.6 tries for Memphis, 18.8 for the opponents). In order to get the points back on the right side of the scoreboard, Memphis will need to stop sending shooters to the line with the clock stopped.
With the Win Over at Seton Hall
- Nicole Dickson passed former teammate Ramses Lonlack in career rebounds to move to 14th in school history. She needs 10 more boards to move to 13th, where Heather Newlon (1980-81) holds the mark at 646.
- Dickson also hit three triples in the win at Seton Hall, moving her within two of Tamika Butler's (2002-06) mark of 137 which ranks sixth all-time in the Memphis record books.
- Asianna Fuqua-Bey filled up all sorts of slots in the box score. In addition to a career-best 14 points, she added six rebounds, one assist, two blocks (also a career-best) and two steals in 22 minutes.
- At one point, while Memphis was building a second half lead, the Tigers had a lineup with three freshmen, one sophomore and a senior (Hearn, Jackson, McGraw, Dickson and Fuqua-Bey).
- Memphis overcame its biggest deficit of the season in the win at Seton Hall. After starting down 13-2 to start the game, Memphis finally got a bucket to get on the board almost six minutes into the game. The Tigers then used a 23-0 run to take a lead they would not relinquish and held Seton Hall over seven minutes without a point going up on the board.