Women's Basketball

    INDIANA HOSTS MINNESOTA TO OPEN BIG TEN SEASON

    Go Hoosiers!
    Go Hoosiers!

    Go Hoosiers!

    INDIANA HOSTS MINNESOTA TO OPEN BIG TEN SEASON

    INDIANA GAMEDAY - Indiana begins Big Ten Conference play this week with two games. The Hoosiers host Minnesota, Thursday, Dec. 30 at 7:30 p.m. (EST), in Assembly Hall before traveling to Iowa City, Iowa to play the Hawkeyes Sunday, Jan. 2 at 2 p.m. (CST), in Carver-Hawkeye Arena (15,500).

    RADIO - All of Indiana's games can be heard live via radio broadcast on WGCT-FM (105.1). The live broadcast will be handled by play-by-play announcer Mike Scott. The broadcast will feature scouting reports by coach Jim Izard, player interviews, a half-time show and a postgame wrap-up with assistant coaches Keila Whittington and Jennifer Jacoby.

    THE HOOSIERS - The Hoosiers enter the Big Ten season with a 5-6 record after having closed out the nonconference portion of their schedule with a 61-55 win over New Mexico State in the consolation game of the Hampton Inn and Fazoli's Classic Dec. 20. Evansville defeated St. Bonaventure in the championship game. Jill Chapman was named to the all-tournament team after scoring 35 points and grabbing 20 rebounds in the two tourney games.

    THE LEADERBOARD - The Hoosiers are currently averaging 71.4 points and 40.5 rebounds per game while shooting 41 percent from the field. Individually, four players are averaging double figure scoring totals and are led by Jill Chapman's 16.6 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. Sophomore Heather Cassady follows with 14.2 points per game while newcomers Rainey Alting and Jill Hartman average 11.4 and 11.0 points per game, respectively. Alting leads the squad in assists, averaging 4.3 per game.

    BIG TEN SEASON OPENERS - Since the Big Ten began sponsoring women's basketball in 1982, the Hoosiers have gone 8-9 in conference opening games. Under Head Coach Jim Izard, IU is 6-5 in league openers.

    MINNESOTA VISITS - Tonight's game versus Minnesota will be the first played for the Golden Gophers since the squad posted a 68-42 victory over St. Louis Dec. 15. Minnesota, which is 6-4, is currently on a four-game winning streak. Three players are averaging double-figure scoring averages and are led by freshman guard Lindsay Lieser's 12.3 points per game. Senior Erin Olson averages 11.7 points and 6.4 rebounds per game while sophomore Cassie VanderHeyden averages 10.2 points per game. As a team, the Gophers are averaging 59.9 points and 39.7 boards per game while shooting 40 percent from the field. In addition, the Gophers average 7.1 3-pointers per game. Head Coach Cheryl Littlejohn is in her third season with the program and carries a 11-43 record. The Series: The Hoosiers lead the all-time series between the two schools 19-17. Tonight's game will be the only meeting of the season for the two teams.

    ABOUT IOWA - The Hawkeyes open their conference season with a trip out East to play No. 6 Penn State Wednesday, Dec. 30. Iowa wrapped up the nonconference portion of its schedule with a 3-6 mark, losing its last three games. Guards Lindsey Meder and Cara Consuegra lead the Hawkeye offense, averaging 17.6 and 10.2 points per game, respectively. As a team Iowa is averaging 66 points and 41.3 rebounds per game while shooting 38 percent from the field. Angie Lee is in her fifth season as head coach of the Hawkeyes and carries a 78-48 school and career record. The Series: Iowa leads the all-time series over the Hoosiers 26-9.

    GATHING RETURNS - Freshman forward Jamie Gathing is expected to return to the lineup against Minnesota after having missed the last eight games with a stress fracture to her foot. Prior to her injury, Gathing had averaged 8.7 points and 6.3 rebounds per game.

    HEAD COACH JIM IZARD - Head Coach Jim Izard is in his 12th season at the helm of the Indiana program where he owns a 183-147 (.557) overall record and a 79-114 (.416) mark in the Big Ten Conference. As Indiana's all-time winningest coach, Izard has guided his teams to nine winning seasons, two NCAA post-season tournament appearances, a runner-up finish in the WNIT post-season tournament and a trip to the Final Four of both the pre- and post-1998 WNIT tournaments. His 18-year career record stands at 346-196 (.641).

    AROUND THE BIG TEN - Jill Chapman currently ranks fourth in the Big Ten in scoring (16.6 ppg), seventh in field goal percentage (.503) and is fourth in rebounding (7.7). Heather Cassady ranks 10th in scoring (14.2 ppg), sixth in 3-point shooting (1.7), ninth in 3-point percentage (.311), ninth in free throw percentage (.757) and is ninth in assists (3.73 apg). Rainey Alting is sixth in assists, averaging 4.3 per game.

    OVER AND UNDER - When the Hoosiers score more than 70 points they are 4-2 and when they score less than 70 they are 1-4.

    OFF THE GLASS - When the Hoosiers win the battle of the boards they are 5-0 this season. Indiana is led off the glass by Jill Chapman who has 85 rebounds this season. She is followed closely by Jill Hartman who has 73. Incidentally, when IU is outrebounded, it is 0-6 against opponents.

    PLAYING TIME - With just eight players available on the current roster, three Hoosiers are averaging 32-plus minutes of court action per game. Guards Heather Cassady and Rainey Alting average 35.8 and 35.5 minutes per game, respectively, while Jill Hartman is averaging 32.5 minutes per game.

    DOUBLE-DOUBLE - After posting 22 double-figure, double-rebounding games as a freshman, sophomore Jill Chapman is on the move once again with four this season, including the last two-straight. Against St. Bonaventure she had 20 points and 10 rebounds while versus New Mexico State, the 6-5 center posted 15 points and 10 boards. In addition, Chapman has scored in double figures in all but two games this season, including the last seven-straight.

    STEADY AS SHE GOES - Since moving into the starting lineup, freshman Jill Hartman has become one of the most consistent statistical forces on the team, averaging 11.0 points, 6.6 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game. Hartman also leads the team from the free throw line with 82 percent shooting and is also most accurate from behind the arc, connecting on 37 percent of her shots beyond the 3-point line.

    THE YOUNG AND RESTLESS - With only two returning players off of last year's squad, IU's five newcomers and two redshirt players have had to quickly step into the Hoosier system. Junior college transfer Rainey Alting is one such player who has adjusted, averaging 35.5 minutes, 11.4 points, 4.8 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game as IU's shooting guard. Freshman Erika Christenson, Jamie Gathing, Jill Hartman and Allison Skapin have all started at least one game in their young careers.

    SHARP AT THE POINT - Point guard Heather Cassady has become one of IU's top offensive threats this season, averaging 14.2 points per game. Through 11 games, Cassady has scored in double-digits in all but two game and has scored in the 20's three times.

    INDIANA IN ASSEMBLY HALL - The Hoosiers are 4-2 at home this season and 1-4 on the road.

    BALANCED ATTACK - Indiana's offensive output has been a balanced one this season with different scoring leaders coming in almost every game. Heather Cassady led IU with 25 points against Western Kentucky and 21 against Middle Tennessee State, while Jill Chapman netted 22 against South Carolina, 16 against Vanderbilt, 35 against Ball State, 20 versus St. Bonaventure and 15 against New Mexico State. It was Tara Jones off the bench who chipped in 17 points in IU's win over Stetson and Jill Hartman who led IU with 23 points against East Carolina and 15 against Valparaiso. Rainey Alting led against No. 19 Arizona with a career-high 23 points.

    TOUGH SCHEDULE - The Hoosiers will play no less than eight teams which are either ranked or receiving votes in the ESPN/USA Today Top 25 Poll. Of those teams, six are Big Ten Conference squads while two are teams Indiana met in nonconference play.

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