Feb. 18, 2009
Indiana Hoosiers (16-8, 9-6) at Northwestern Wildcats (6-19, 2-12) | Game Notes | Listen
Thursday, Feb. 19, 2009 | 8 p.m. ET
Welsh-Ryan Arena (8,117) | Evanston, Ill.
Audio: Streamed on IUHoosiers.com (Jeremy Gray, pxp)
THE OPENING TIP
The Hoosiers will play their final regular season road game on Thursday, Feb. 19, when they travel to Evanston, Ill., to take on Northwestern at 8 p.m. ET. The audio Indiana's battle with the Wildcats will be streamed live on IUHoosiers.com, with Jeremy Gray calling the play-by-play from Welsh-Ryan Arena. IU will look for its 10th Big Ten win this season and its 17th overall on the season.
SCOUTING THE WILDCATS
Northwestern enters Thursday's game with a 6-19 overall record and a 2-12 mark in the Big Ten. The Wildcats are currently on a two-game skid after defeating Michigan, 60-57, on Feb. 5 in Evanston. The Wildcats are led by Amy Jaeschke with 14.2 points and 8.5 rebounds per game. She also owns 82 blocked shots on the season to lead NU, and had 37 assists and 27 steals. Kristin Cartwright is averaging 9.9 points per contest, to go along with 4.3 boards, 53 assists and 33 steals. Northwestern is averaging 56.0 points and 33.6 rebounds per game as a team, and is shooting 39.6 percent (501-of-1264) from the floor.
WHAT'S COMING UP
Following a road contest at Northwestern on Thursday, Feb. 19, Indiana will battle Ohio State in Assembly Hall on Sunday, Feb. 22, which will be aired live on ESPN2 at 4 p.m. ET. IU will Think Pink in its game against the Buckeyes as it continues to raise awareness of the fight against breast cancer. All fans are encouraged to wear pink with the first 1,000 fans receiving pink and white pom-poms.
The Hoosiers will close the regular season on Sunday, March 1 with Michigan as IU Athletics invites everyone to Head to Hall as IU tries to sell out Assembly Hall on Senior Day. Tip-off against the Wolverines is set for 2 p.m. ET with $1 tickets. The first 3,000 fans in attendance will receive a free t-shirt.
The 2009 Big Ten Women's Basketball Tournament will be held March 5-8 at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. All games leading up the championship contest will be aired on the Big Ten Network with the championship game on ESPN2.
IU head coach Felisha Legette-Jack is in her third year at the helm of the Hoosier program with a career mark of 107-100 over seven seasons. She led the Hoosiers to back-to-back postseason berths in the WNIT and an 18-15 mark in 2007-08. Legette-Jack recorded her 100th career victory at Michigan State on Dec. 29, and reached her 50th win as the Hoosier mentor against Purdue on Jan. 19, 2009.
Northwestern head coach Joe McKeown enters his first season at Northwestern with a career record of 515-193 in 22 years.
NOTES OF INTEREST
Sunday's meeting marks the 61st all-time between the Hoosiers and Wildcats, with Indiana leading, 32-28.
Senior Whitney Thomas and junior Jamie Braun each entered IU's 1,000 point club this season. Thomas recorded her 1,000-th career point on Jan. 4 vs. Iowa, and Braun reached the 1,000 mark on Jan. 19 vs. Purdue.
Seniors Whitney Thomas and Kim Roberson are currently tied with Jenny DeMuth (2002-06) with 230 career steals, IU's all-time record.
IU's RPI ranks 27th in this week's Sagarain Ratings, with a strength of schedule ranking of 14th. The Hoosiers' RPI on NCAASports.com is 47th, and 48th on CollegeRPI.com.
FIGHTING `TIL THE END
Indiana currently sits in sixth place in the league standings, but is just 2.5 games out of first place with just three games remaining. Ohio State owns a share of the conference lead with Michigan State. Purdue is in third place, one half-game out of first. Minnesota is in fourth place with just one game out of first, and Iowa is two games out of first place in fifth with four games left to play.
3'S COME UP BIG
Senior Kim Roberson, junior Jamie Braun and sophomores Whitney Lindsay used their shooting on the perimeter to IU's advantage on Feb. 16 at Wisconsin. Each player came up with at least one big 3-pointer to keep the Hoosiers in contention for their OT win. With the Hoosiers down by eight, 21-13, with 1:16 left in the first half, Lindsay netted a 3-pointer to help the Hoosiers regain momentum heading into the halftime break.
With 1.3 seconds remaining in regulation, Roberson sank a 3 to knot the game at 53-53 and send into overtime, and with 1:42 left in OT, Braun hit a trey that gave the Hoosiers the momentum to hold on for the win. Combined the trio shot 66.7 percent from beyond the arc (6-of-9).
ROBERSON MATCHES THOMAS
Senior Kim Roberson tallied two steals at Wisconsin on Feb. 16 to tie her current teammate Whitney Thomas and former teammate Jenny DeMuth (2002-06) with 230 career steals, IU's all-time record. Roberson ranks third in steals in the Big Ten with 2.50 per game, while Thomas ranks ninth with 1.79 per contest.
CLEANING THE GLASS
On the season, Indiana has averaged 39.8 rebounds per game, a +3.1 advantage over its opponents, ranking second overall in the Big Ten and leading the league with 14.75 offensive caroms per contest.
The Hoosiers' 8-2 start to Big Ten action is the program's best start since the 1982-83 team went 6-2 in its first eight league games.
Indiana's 60-50 win at Michigan was it's first since Feb. 1, 1998 when the Hoosiers defeated the Wolverines in Ann Arbor 67-58.
IU's 71-57 win over Purdue in Assembly Hall was it's first over its rival in Bloomington since Jan. 25, 1998. That date was also the last time IU won the two team's rivalry game, claiming the Barnburner Trophy.
Indiana's win at Penn State on Jan. 11 was the second time in the series history that the Hoosiers recorded a win in Happy Valley. The victory was also IU's seventh win against the legendary program.
BOOK-ENDING THE SEASON
The Hoosiers and Wildcats haven't faced each other since Dec. 20, 2008, marking 61 days since their first meeting. Northwestern was Indiana's first home Big Ten opponent and will be their last road league foe this season.
LAST TIME VS. NORTHWESTERN
Whitney Thomas scored 20 points to lead five Hoosiers in double-digit points as the Indiana women's basketball team picked up its seventh straight win with a 81-57 victory over Northwestern in its Big Ten opener.
Thomas sank 7-of-13 from the field and 6-of-6 from the free throw line for her 20. She added eight rebounds, four steals, three assists and a blocked shot. She is now 16 points shy of scoring 1,000 career points at Indiana. Senior Amber Jackson scored 17 points on 7-of-11 shooting from the field and 3-of-3 from the free throw line. She added seven boards and an assist. Senior Kim Roberson scored 13 points on 5-of-9 shooting from the floor and came away with four steals, four rebounds and two assists. Sophomore Jori Davis netted 12 points and junior Jamie Braun scored 11 points on 3-of-4 shooting from the 3-point line and 2-of-2 from the charity stripe. She added four assists, four rebounds and two steals in the win.
The Hoosiers shot 46.9 percent (30-of-64) from the floor as a team and 84.2 percent (16-of-19) from the free throw line. IU also won the battle of the boards, 41-35, and forced Northwestern into committing 21 turnovers. The Wildcats shot 39.0 percent (23-of-59) from the field and 54.5 percent (6-of-11) from the free throw line.