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Feb. 5, 2003

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TIP OFF
No. 23 Ohio State (15-5; 6-3 Big Ten) tips off against No. 14/15 Minnesota (16-3; 5-3 Big Ten) at 7p.m. Thursday, Feb. 6, in Value City Arena.

THE MINNESOTA SERIES
Ohio State leads the all-time series with Minnesota 37-6, including seven of the last eight meetings. The teams split last season, each taking one victory.

LAST TIME VS. MINNESOTA
The Ohio State Buckeyes whittled away at a 21-point deficit with a 14-2 rally in the last five minutes against No. 18 Minnesota but it wasn’t enough as the Golden Gophers prevailed 79-64 Feb. 7, 2002 in Minneapolis.

The Buckeyes pulled to within nine, 73-64, with 2:13 remaining, however Minnesota managed to keep OSU at bay threading 6-of-6 free throws down the stretch with the help of guard Lindsay Whalen who went 4-of-4.

The Buckeyes were fueled by the front court duo of juniors Courtney Coleman and D’wan Shackleford. Coleman led all players with a career-high 29 points off 75 percent (12-of-16) shooting from the floor. Coleman added nine rebounds to the boxscore, just one carom shy of recording her fourth consecutive double-double. Shackleford earned 11 points and six rebounds, however, it was her career-high nine steals (seven in the second half) that sparked the Buckeye comeback.

Center Janel McCarville came up big for the Golden Gophers with 14 points and 15 rebounds. Forward Corrin Von Wald led the Gophers with 17 points.

Minnesota, shooting 47.2 percent from the floor in the first half, led 45-29 at the half.Ohio State shot 38 percent in the opening stanza but recovered in the second half with 45 percent shooting while barring Minnesota to just one field goal in the last four minutes of the game.

ABOUT NO. 14/15 MINNESOTA
No. 14/15 Minnesota is 16-3 overall and 5-3 in Big Ten competition. All of their losses came on the road in league play at the hands of Penn State (83-53), Michigan State (74-71) and Illinois (94-80).

The Golden Gophers are led by Lindsay Whalen, who is averaging 22.6 points per game. Whalen is joined by Corrin Von Wald and Janel McCarville, who net 15.7 and 11.4 points, respectively, to round out the Minnesota scoring effort.

Minnesota is under the guidance of first-year head coach Pam Borton.

MINNESOTA’S PAM BORTON
First-year Golden Gopher head coach Pam Borton, a Fayette, Ohio, native, was named the new Minnesota women’s basketball coach on May 24, 2002. Borton is the seventh head coach in the 29-year history of the Golden Gopher women’s basketball program.

Prior to joining the ranks at Minnesota, Borton spent five years at Boston College as an assistant coach. She was promoted to associate head coach her final two seasons with the Eagles. She served as BC’s recruiting coordinator and helped the Eagles to a 102-51 record, including NCAA Tournament berths in 1999, 2000 and 2002.

Borton was the head coach at the University of Vermont from 1993-97 before moving to Boston. In her four years at Vermont, she led the Catamounts to a 69-46 (.667) record, a North Atlantic Conference championship, and an NCAA Tournament appearance in 1994.

THIRD WEEK IN THE RANKINGS
Despite suffering two losses on the road at Penn State and Purdue last week, Ohio State remained in the Associated Press Top 25 rankings this week at the No. 25 spot. This is the third week this season that head coach Jim Foster’s squad has been in the Top 25. They debuted at No. 23 Jan. 6 after a 70-66 victory over then-No. 17/18 Texas Jan. 5 in St. John Arena. That ranking was a first for an Ohio State squad since Jan. 25, 1999. The Buckeyes jumped back into the Associated Press Top 25 rankings last week at the No. 23 spot.

TWICE IN FOUR GAMES
Ohio State and Minnesota will meet again four games down the road at 4 p.m. EST Feb. 16 in Minneapolis . The game will be televised by ESPN Regional.

WILBURN ON TAP TO NAB STEALS RECORD
Freshman Kim Wilburn is on her way to owning the record for steals by a Buckeye freshman. The Southfield, Mich., native has earned 64 total steals 20 games into her rookie campaign. Martha Baker holds the record for steals by a Buckeye freshman with 71, which was set during the 1975-76 season.

Wilburn ranks second in all games among Big Ten leaders with 3.20 swipes per game and is in the top spot for conference games with 4.33 steals an outing. That is more than one steal better than the second-ranked Corrin Von Wald from Minnesota, who averages 3.25 steals per conference contest.

COLEMAN CARRYING THE NATION
Senior Courtney Coleman’s .721 (124-172) field-goal percentage this season is leading the nation and the Big Ten conference. The 6-1 forward from Cincinnati also currently holds the top spot in Ohio State history with a .608 (536-882) career field-goal percentage.

CHRISTENSON CONTRIBUTING
Junior Erika Christenson contributed solid minutes at No. 9/10 Purdue and recorded one blocked shot, two points (2-for-2 from free-throw line) and two rebounds in nine minutes of play vs. the Boilermakers.

ALLEN SWATTING STUFF
Sophomore Ashley Allen, who stands at 5-feet-nine-inches tall, has recorded a blocked shots in six games this season.

PROVING HER POINT
Freshman Kim Wilburn has proven she belongs at the point of the Ohio State offense with a 1.72 assist-to-turnover ratio in 20 games, including 15 starts, for the Buckeyes. Her ratio is ranked third among league leaders.

DANGEROUS DUET
In 17-of-20 contests this season, Caity Matter or Courtney Coleman has been the leading scorer for the Buckeyes. The two are combining for 30.7 of Ohio State’s 70.8 average points tallied per game.

Not only is the duo the leading offensive force for Ohio State, but they both currently hold the top spots in Ohio State record books for field-goal and 3-point percentage. Coleman holds a career mark of 608 (536-882) from the field and Matter has earned a .457 (84-184) average from downtown.

MATTER NAMED BIG TEN PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Sophomore Caity Matter earned Big Ten Player of the Week honors for her performances at Wisconsin (Jan. 16) and at Northwestern (Jan. 19). Matter was a combined 12-for-21 (.571) from behind the 3-point line, averaged 25.0 points, 5.5 boards and had only one turnover in a total 63 minutes of play. Matter’s award marked the first time since Nov. 20, 2000, that an Ohio State player was named Big Ten Player of the Week when teammate LaToya Turner earned the honor as a freshman.

SCHEDULE STATS & SUCH
Some notes about the Buckeye’s 15-5 start:

The Buckeyes’ 15-5 start is the best since the 1992-93 season,when Ohio State went 17-3 in the first 20 games of the year. Sincethe NCAA began keeping statistics during the 1981-82 season, JimFoster’s 15-5 record is the best start for a first-year head coachsince Nancy Darsch went 16-4 in 1985-86 in her first 20 gamesduring her first season at the helm of the Buckeye program. TheBuckeyes’ 6-3 Big Ten record is the best conference beginning foran Ohio State team since the 1998-99 season when the team was also6-3 nine games into the Big Ten portion of their schedule. The lasttime an Ohio State team was 10-0 at home was during the 1992-93season.

TURNOVER TROUBLES TAKING BACK SEAT
Ohio State, who began with a bit of a struggle in the turnover category, has made a move for the better in the conference portion of their schedule. The Buckeyes now rank third in the Big Ten turnover margin category with a +3.25 mark. The Buckeye are averaging 16.8 turnovers an outing and forcing 20.0 turnovers a game.

The Boilermakers are the second-ranked squad among league leaders with a +4.22 turnover margin.

TWO-AND-TWO VS. TOP 25 SQUADS
The Ohio State Buckeyes are 2-2 vs. ranked teams this season. Ohio State beat then-No. 17/18 Texas, 70-66, Jan. 5 in St. John Arena, and were victorious over then-No. 19/24 Arizona (84-65) Dec. 15 in Value City Arena. The squad fell at No. 14/15 Penn State Jan. 30 (68-53) and at No. 9/10 Purdue (67-62) Feb. 2.

ALLEN ALIVE IN BIG TEN CONTESTS
In conference outings, sophomore Ashley Allen ranks second with a 1.8 assist-to-turnover ratio. Allen has racked up 81 total assists in 20 games this season compared to her freshman campaign, when she earned 53 total assists in 29 contests.

MAKING VCA HOME
After a 74-59 victory over Iowa, the Buckeyes moved to 10-0 in Columbus for the first time since the 1992-93 season. Since Jim Foster and his staff took over the reigns of the Buckeye basketball program last spring, the squad has captured wins in Columbus over Wayne State (100-57), then-No. 19/24 Arizona (84-65), Virginia (73-60), Youngstown State (76-45), Austin Peay (76-60), Northwestern (82-49), then-No. 17/18 Texas (70-66), Michigan State (70-65), Illinois (82-74) and Iowa (74-59).

NATION’S TOP SHOOTER
Senior Courtney Coleman’s .721 (124-172) field-goal percentage this season is leading the nation and the Big Ten conference. The 6-1 forward from Cincinnati also currently holds the top spot in Ohio State history with a .608 (536-882) career field-goal percentage.

SHACK STEPPIN’ UP
Senior D’wan Shackleford has been stepping up her play recently with solid performances the past three games against Penn State, Illinois and Iowa. She has averaged nine points and eight boards the last three times out for the Buckeyes.

“Shack” was the leading rebounder with 6 at Penn State, 10 vs. Illinois and 8 vs. Iowa.

Against Illinois, Shack was a key component to the Buckeye’s run at the end of the first half vs. Illinois, which sent Ohio State up 45-36 at the midway mark. In the final three minutes of the stanza, Shack earned two assists, three rebounds and used her athleticism to tip-in an offensive board.

Additionally, Shack’s defense was instrumental in the Buckeye’s 74-59 victory over the Hawkeyes.

REYNOLDS FINE AT THE LINE
Senior DiDi Reynolds is an impressive 24-25 from the free-throw line this season.

The Bascom, Ohio, native has steadily improved over her four years. As a freshman, the shooting guard shot .688 (11-16), her second season she was .765 (26-34) from the charity stripe and last year, she was .841 (37-44) from the line.

ANOTHER TO WATCH AT THE STRIPE
In addition to DiDi Reynolds, sophomore Caity Matter is also a nearly flawless 30-32 on the year from the charity stripe. Her freshman year (2000-01), the Bluffton, Ohio, native was 22-for-25 from the line and ended the year with eight consecutive makes from the line, which extended her total consecutive free-throws made to 31 until she missed the last free throw she took against Michigan State Jan. 9.

Matter missed a stretch of 16 games her freshman campaign due to injury and came back to help the Buckeyes capture the 2001 WNIT Championship. She redshirted last season after she fractured her third metatarsal during a Nov. 11 practice.

FIVE IS A FIRST
In the 82-74 victory over Illinois Jan. 23, Ohio State relied on the even scoring force of five Buckeyes notching double-figures for the first time this season. Senior Courtney Coleman, sophomore Caity Matter, freshman Kim Wilburn, sophomore Ashley Allen and junior LaToya Turner scored 18, 16, 15, 10 and 10 points, respectively.

STINT OF PERFECTION
In two consecutive games at Northwestern (Jan. 16) and vs. Illinois (Jan. 23), senior forward Courtney Coleman did not miss a field goal. She was 5-for-5 in Evanston and 7-for-7 against the Illini.

15 FOR THE FROSH
Freshman Kim Wilburn scored a career-high 15 points against Illinois Jan. 23 off a 7-for-11 night from the field.

ALL EYES ON THE BUCKS
Ohio State’s attendance of 6,389 against Iowa in Value City Arena Jan. 26 shattered the season-high mark for the Buckeyes. Ohio State is averaging 2,986 people at all games, 2,848 in Columbus and 3,545 on the road.

AS A MATTER OF FACT
Sophomore Caity Matter is leading the Big Ten with 3.30 3-pointers drained per game. She is also ranked second for her shooting percentage from downtown with a .482 (66-137) stroke from beyond the arc.

SOPHOMORE RECORD ALL MATTER’S
Sophomore Caity Matter, who has a total of 66 3-pointers 20 games into her sophomore season, has earned the record for the most 3-pointers drained by a sophomore in Ohio State history. Former teammate Lauren Shenk held the previous record with 51 shots hit beyond the arc during her sophomore campaign in 1999-00.

SHOOTER’S BLOCK
Junior LaToya Turner is ranked third in the Big Ten with 1.65 blocked shots an outing. Turner’s career mark of 106 rejected shots ranks fourth on the Buckeye record books.

TEAM SHOOTING ON TARGET
Currently, the Buckeyes are ranked second in the league with a .499 (546-1095) shooting average and a .392 (105-268) stroke from behind the arc. They are one of two teams that are draining at least half the shots they attempt from the field. Additionally, they are holding opponents to a league-leading 56.9 points per game. Big Ten competitors are only scoring 57.8 points an outing vs. the Buckeyes, a figure which also leads the league.

POSITIVE THINKING
Ohio State is one of four conference teams that owns a positive margin of victory. The Buckeyes possess a +13.9 margin of victory, which ranks second in the Big Ten.

BUSINESS BENEATH THE BUCKET
Ohio State’s +4.6 rebounding margin is ranked third in the league. Michigan State, who holds a staggering +10.6 average over its opponents, holds the top spot among conference squads. Notably, the Buckeyes outrebounded the Spartans in their first contest of the season against MSU, 32-22, Jan. 9 in Value City Arena.

PROVING A POINT
Freshman Kim Wilburn has proven she belongs at the point of the Ohio State offense with a 1.7 assist-to-turnover ratio in 20 games, including 15 starts, for the Buckeyes. Her ratio is ranked third among league leaders.

MATTER TIES SCHOOL RECORD FROM BEHIND THE ARC
Sophomore Caity Matter was unstoppable behind the 3-point line at Wisconsin. She scored 27 points and nailed seven treys. Seven makes from downtown ties the school single-game record, which is held by former All-American Katie Smith.

SERIES HISTORY
Two times this season the Buckeyes have accomplished something that no member of the team had ever experienced before. The team’s road win at Wisconsin (57-42) Jan. 16 and the 82-74 victory over Illinois Jan. 23 was a first for this set of Buckeyes. No member of the current Ohio State team had previously earned a victory in Madison or a victory over Illinois – home or away.

37 AND IN
Sophomore Caity Matter has made her way into Ohio State history in only 37 games wearing Scarlet and Gray. During the 2000-01 season, Matter was a starter until an injury caused her to miss a stretch of 16 games. She averaged 6.4 points per game while shooting 44 percent from the field, 37 percent from three-point range and 88 percent from the free-throw line.

After fracturing her third metatarsal in her left foot during practice Nov. 11, 2001, Matter was granted a medical redshirt for the 2001-02 season.

SENIORS COMING OFF BENCH AND MAKING BIG IMPACT
Seniors DiDi Reynolds and D’wan Shackleford are coming off the bench for the Buckeyes this season and the two veterans are combining for 12.7 points and 7.5 rebounds per game.

SHENK NAMED 2003 WOODY HAYES NATIONAL SCHOLAR-ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
Lauren Shenk, a former women’s basketball player at Ohio State, has been named the 2003 Woody Hayes National Scholar-Athlete Award recipient by The University & Northwest Sertoma Club of Columbus. The Woody Hayes National Scholar-Athlete Award is given to the outstanding man and woman in each of the three collegiate divisions for demonstrated excellence in academics, athletics and community service. Shenk, a standout on the Ohio State squad from 1999-02, is the first women from Ohio State to win the award. Previous Buckeye award winners are football players Robert Hoying (1996) and Greg Smith (1993).

Shenk became the 20th member of the Ohio State 1,000-point scoring club with a 16-point effort against the University of Michigan Jan. 10, 2002. Shenk, who began studies last autumn at the OSU College of Medicine, was a 2002 Big Ten Medal of Honor Finalist, a two-time Verizon/CoSIDA Women’s Basketball District IV Academic All-American, a GTE/CoSIDA Women’s Basketball District IV Academic All-American, a three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection and a four-time OSU Scholar Athlete.

EUROPEAN TOUR
The Buckeyes were 5-0 against French and Swiss opponents during their 12-day tour through Europe. While abroad, the Buckeyes held a 28-point scoring margin of victory, averaged 74.4 points per game and held opponents to 45.8 points per contest on their way to an undefeated record overseas.

Courtney Coleman and LaToya Turner paced the Buckeyes abroad with an average of 15.6 and 14.6 points an outing, respectively. Sophomore Ashley Allen showed her versatility by running the point, dishing out assists and averaging 8.6 points per game, including a 16-point effort against Martigny (Switzerland). Allen also earned five assists, four steals and two rebounds in the Martigny victory.

OH CAPTAIN, OUR CAPTAIN
Senior Courtney Coleman was named the captain for the Ohio State women’s basketball team this season. The senior forward has made her mark on the Ohio State record books and is leading the nation in field-goal percentage.

COLEMAN NAMED TO COLORADO ALL-TOURNEY TEAM
Senior Courtney Coleman was named to the Coors Classic all-tournament team. Coleman was solid offensively for Jim Foster’s Buckeyes by scoring 17 and 18 points against Villanova (Nov. 29) and Hartford (Nov. 30), respectively. The two-time second team all-Big Ten selection shot 16-for-18 from the field, was 3-for-4 from the free-throw line and collected 10 rebounds over the two nights. This was Coleman’s fourth time in as many events to be named to the all-tournament team. Coleman was a member of the Great Alaska Shootout, WNIT and Women’s Sports Foundation Classic all-tournament teams.

HAYNAM PULLING DOUBLE SHIFTS
Junior Emily Haynam became a two-sport athlete when she joined the OSU soccer team as a goalkeeper last spring. Haynam was successful on the soccer field and garnered Big Ten Player of the Week honors for her shutout performances at Wisconsin (Oct. 18) and at Minnesota (Oct. 20). The Buckeye soccer team was defeated by Notre Dame, 3-1, in the first round of the program’s inaugural trip to the NCAA Tournament and went 10-11-1 for the season. Ohio State was 6-3 with Haynam in goal.

CREWS OUT INDEFINITELY
Unfortunately, the European trip came at a cost as sophomore Charisse Crews suffered an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury in her right knee while competing abroad with the Buckeyes during their trip through Europe. Crews went down Aug. 30 in Montreux, Switzerland, against Martigny (OSU’s third game of the trip) during the third quarter after scoring seven points that night. Crews underwent surgery in September and is out indefinitely.

BACK IN ACTION
Three Buckeye players return to the hardwood after being granted medical redshirts for the 2001-02 season – junior LaToya Turner, sophomore Caity Matter and freshman Brandee Gibbs. Additionally, junior Tanya McClure was granted a medical redshirt for the 2000-01 season and was injured the majority of the 2001-02 season.

LAST TIME OUT
The No. 23 Ohio State women’s basketball team (15-5; 6-3 Big Ten) lost to No. 9/10 Purdue (18-3; 7-2 Big Ten), 67-62, Feb. 2 at Mackey Arena in West Lafayette, Ind. The Buckeyes were led by sophomore Caity Matter, who scored 22 points (7-12) and was 5-for-5 from behind the 3-point line in the first half. Senior Courtney Coleman tallied 15 points (7-9) and freshman Kim Wilburn distributed a career-best 11 assists and had only two turnovers vs. the Boilermakers.

Buckeye senior DiDi Reynolds nailed a 3-pointer with 47 seconds to go and pulled her squad to within two points (64-62) of the Boilermakers, but with 23 ticks left on the clock Purdue’s Shereka Wright, who led her team with 21 points (four in the first half) and a perfect 11-for-11 stroke from the line, created a three-point play with a field goal under the basket and a subsequent free throw to seal the victory.

The Buckeyes went into halftime with a one-point advantage (34-33) and opened the second half with Coleman hitting two consecutive shots to put Ohio State ahead 38-33. The Boilermakers went on a 14-3 run to take a six-point lead (47-41) with 15:06 to play. Purdue maintained a modest advantage until Matter nailed one of her six total treys at the 6:18 mark and knotted the game for the eighth time at 55. Sophomore Ashley Allen sent Ohio State up by two on the next Buckeye possession with a baseline jumper, but Wright answered to tie the game for the ninth and final time with 4:42 left.

After two Coleman misses from the charity stripe, Purdue’s Erika Valek hit a 3-pointer to take a 60-57 lead. Coleman responded with a field goal to bring the Buckeyes to within one point for the 11th time before Valek answered yet again with a jumper and Wright made two free throws prior to Reynolds’ trey at the 47-second mark.

In a tight contest during the first ten minutes, Purdue led by as many as six points (14-8) after a Lindsey Hicks basket. The Buckeyes would not back down and answered with a 17-7 run capped by an Allen layup, which put Ohio State ahead of their hosts 25-21. While Purdue whittled the Buckeye lead away over the next five minutes of play and went up by two (29-28) after a pair of Valek free throws, Matter and Coleman combined for seven points and kept the Buckeyes up by one going into the locker room.

Ohio State shot 47.1 (24-51) percent from the field compared to Purdue’s 39.6 (21-53) percent. However, the Boilermakers were a nearly flawless 19-of-20 (.950) from the free-throw line, while Ohio State went 6-of-14 from the stripe (.429).

Junior LaToya Turner added nine points, Reynolds scored six, Allen netted four points and junior Erika Christenson, senior D’wan Shackleford and Wilburn each added two points to round out the Buckeye offensive effort. Allen grabbed a game-high seven rebounds and Coleman earned four steals.