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Jan. 28, 2005

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THE TIP
The No. 3/3 Ohio State women’s basketball team (20-2; 7-1 Big Ten) travels to take on Illinois (12-6; 4-4 Big Ten) at 3 p.m. EST at Assembly Hall in Champaign-Urbana, Ill.

ABOUT ILLINOIS
Illinois is 12-6 overall and an even 4-4 in conference play. The squad is coming off a 53-43 win vs. Indiana Thursday night, but dropped the two previous games vs. Michigan State and at Minnesota. In the last seven games, Illinois is 3-4 overall.

Angelina Williams is leading the Fighting Illini with 19.3 points per contest, followed by Tiffanie Guthrie’s 16.2 per game. Danyel Crutcher is the team’s leading rebounder with 6.6 caroms per contest.

Besides Big Ten play, Ohio State and Illinois faced common opponents in the non-conference portion of their schedules as both teams tallied victories vs. Saint Joseph’s and UCLA.

Illinois is led by Theresa Grentz, who is 631-277 in 31 seasons as a head coach and 170-122 in 10 years at the helm of the Fighting Illini program.

OHIO STATE-ILLINOIS SERIES
Ohio State leads the all-time series with Illinois, 31-15. Last season, the two teams split games, with each squad defending its home court. This is the only regular-season meeting for Ohio State and Illinois this year.

While the Buckeyes opened the all-time series by winning 18 of the initial 19 contests, the Fighting Illini own a 7-3 advantage in the last nine games. Ohio State won the last game vs. Illinois, 76-57, Feb. 22, 2004 in Value City Arena.

In Champaign-Urbana, Illinois leads the all-time series 11-10. The last Buckeye win at Illinois was an 88-72 victory Jan. 28, 1995.

LAST TIME VS. ILLINOIS
The Ohio State women’s basketball team beat Illinois, 76-57, Feb. 22, 2004 at Value City Arena in Columbus, Ohio. Shooting guard Caity Matter led all scorers with 25 points (10-of-18), while LaToya Turner scored 19 points and Jessica Davenport added 12 points. Turner and Davenport led the effort on the boards by pulling down eight and six rebounds, respectively.

After Ohio State led by as many as 12 points in the first half the closest Illinois got in the second half was nine points, 36-27, at 19:09. The Buckeyes, who opened the game with a 13-3 run, responded with a second 13-3 scoring advantage to establish a 19-point lead, 49-30, with 15:49 left. The Buckeyes took as large as a 23-point advantage twice in the second half as head coach Jim Foster’s team hovered around a 20-point lead to close the game.

A series of runs characterized the first half of play. The Buckeyes took an early 13-3 lead, but Illinois outscored the Buckeyes 6-0 and pulled within four, 13-9, at 12:58. Davenport converted on two consecutive layups and Kim Wilburn sank a free throw to give the Buckeyes a seven-point lead, 18-11, with 10:27 left until halftime. Illinois’ Angelina Williams and Tiffanie Guthrie hit two jumpers, which brought the Fighting Illini within three points, 18-15, with 8:45 left.

A 9-0 run by Ohio State during the next three minutes established a 27-15 Buckeye advantage, but Illinois would not back down and pulled the game to within five points off a Cindy Dallas Jumper with 3:02 left. Matter and Turner combined for five points and quickly put OSU up 10, 34-24, with 1:03 remaining. Illinois’ Williams converted 1-of-2 free throws with three ticks left, which sent Ohio State into the locker room with a 34-25 lead.

As a team, Ohio State dished 20 assists compared to Illinois’ 11, shot .518 (29-of-56) from the field and .789 (15-of-19) from the charity stripe.

Brandie Hoskins scored eight points, Stephanie Blanton, Beth Howe tallied four points and Wilburn netted three points. Hoskins, Matter and Wilburn grabbed five rebounds each.

LAST TIME OUT AT WISCONSIN
The No. 3/3 Ohio State women’s basketball team (20-2; 7-1 Big Ten) beat Wisconsin (7-10; 1-6 Big Ten) 86-67 Jan. 27 at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wis. The victory was win No. 20 for Ohio State. The Buckeyes have won at least 20 games three-consecutive seasons under head coach Jim Foster and four of the last five years.

Jessica Davenport scored a career-best and Kohl Center record 36 points off a 15-of-21 night from the field. Her 36 points is tied for fourth on the Ohio State all-time single-game scoring list.

Wisconsin led 5-2 off a Janese Banks jumper at 16:28, but the Buckeyes went on a 22-5 scoring run over the next seven minutes to go up 24-10. Davenport and Caity Matter scored a combined 20 of the Buckeyes’ 24 opening points. Ohio State continued to build on its lead and eventually took a 19-point advantage, 41-22, with 2:26 until the break.

The Badgers went on a quick 5-2 scoring run, but the Buckeyes answered with back-to-back Davenport and Ashley Allen layups. Wisconsin’s Ebba Gebisa hit a shot with 10 seconds left to bring the score to 45-29 at the break.

Wisconsin cut the lead to nine twice in the opening minutes of the second half, but Ohio State used an 18-4 scoring run to take a 65-42 advantage with less than 12 minutes to play. The most the Buckeyes led by was 24 points (86-62) at 1:17. Wisconsin netted five straight points and the game ended 86-67 in favor of the visiting Buckeyes.

Ohio State shot 50.7 (35-of-69) from the field, outrebounded UW 42-27 and racked up 15 steals vs. the Badgers’ seven. The Buckeyes tallied 56 points inside vs. Wisconsin’s 24 points in the paint and converted 26 scores vs. UW’s 11 points off turnovers.

For Ohio State, Matter and Brandie Hoskins added 14 and 12 points, respectively. Davenport was the games’ leading rebounder with nine caroms. Allen dished eight assists vs. two turnovers and Kim Wilburn had seven steals, which tied her career-best mark and tied the Kohl Center opponent record. Matter notched a career-high five steals.

Wisconsin was led by Jolene Anderson, who scored 24 points, and Stephanie Rich, who tallied 12.

COACHING CONNECTIONS
Ohio State head coach Jim Foster and Illinois’ Theresa Grentz go way back. Both hail from Pennsylvania and began their collegiate coaching careers at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. Grentz was the head coach for two seasons (1974-75 and 1975-76) and two years later after Penn State’s Rene Portland left Saint Joe’s, Foster began a 13-year tenure for the Hawks from 1978-1991. Grentz’ second head coaching position was at Rutgers, where she stayed for 19 seasons. Rutgers and Saint Joseph’s both were in the Atlantic 10 conference and Foster and Grentz faced each other many times during conference contests. However, the two have not always been on opposite sides of the court. Foster served as an assistant coach for Illinois’ Grentz twice at the international level. The two worked together at the 1990 World Championship/Goodwill Games for the United States’ gold-medal team and in 1992 for the United States Olympic Team, which captured a bronze medal.

MASON MATES
Ohio State’s Michelle Muñoz and Illinois’ Jeré Issenmann were high school teammates at Mason High School in Mason, Ohio. Both Big Ten student-athletes played under Gerry Lackey and were members of the 2000 State Champion Mason squad that recorded a perfect 27-0 mark and ended the season ranked No. 2 nationally.

DAVENPORT’S 36 A KOHL CENTER RECORD
Jessica Davenport scored a career-high 36 points off a 15-of-21 night from the field at Wisconsin Thursday night. Her 36 scores and 15 field goals made are Kohl Center records and 21 attempts ties a Kohl Center opponent mark.

Davenport’s 36 scores, which was her first-career 30-point contest, are tied for fourth on the Ohio State all-time single-game scoring list. Additionally, she has tallied six 20-point performances this season.

WILBURN STEALS THE SHOW IN MADISON
Kim Wilburn tied her season-high mark with seven steals vs. the Badgers Thursday evening. Her seven swipes tied a Kohl center opponent record. Wilburn’s 2.5 steals per outing is No. 5 in the league and No. 1 for the OSU squad. As a team, Ohio State is No. 4 in the league with 9.6 steals per game.

MATTER MAKES CAREER-BEST STEALS
Caity Matter aided Wilburn’s record-tying performance at Wisconsin Jan. 27 with a career-best five steals vs. the Badgers. Matter’s previous personal-high was three steals in seven other games.

ALLEN TOP HEAVY WITH ASSISTS
Ashley Allen had eight assists and only turnovers at Wisconsin Thursday evening. Allen, who is the Big Ten’s leader with a 2.36 assist-to-turnover ratio, has notched top-heavy assists vs. turnovers in many games this season, including recent performances of seven assist s and two turnovers vs. Northwestern Jan. 23 and a 9:1 mark vs. Iowa Jan. 13.

In 14 games this year, Allen has tallied more assists than turnovers compared to only two games during which Allen had more turnovers than helpers.

OTHERS ASSISTING ALLEN
The Buckeyes are not only relying on Ashley Allen, who is No. 1 for assist-to-turnover ratio in the Big Ten, to maintain the team’s top rankings for turnover margin (+3.73) and assist-to-turnover ratio (1.35). Ohio State, which is one of only four teams in the conference to have a positive turnover margin, can thank Kim Wilburn and Brandie Hoskins for taking care of the rock as well. Wilburn is No. 3 with a 1.87 ratio and Hoskins is No. 8 with a ratio of 1.46.

NINE THE BEST SINCE 2000-01
Ohio State has won the previous nine-consecutive games, which is the most wins in a row since the 2000-01 season, when the Buckeyes opened the year with 10 straight victories.

Prior to the current Buckeye win streak this season, Ohio State won eight in a row beginning with an 80-43 win vs. Yale Nov. 27 and ending with a 69-62 loss at Penn State Dec. 30.

THREE IN A ROW FOR FOSTER
Ohio State’s 86-67 win at Wisconsin Jan. 27 was victory No. 20 for the 2004-05 Buckeyes. Ohio State has won at least 20 games under head coach Jim Foster in his first three seasons in Columbus. As a program, the Buckeyes have notched 20-win seasons 17 times, including four of the last five years.

In Foster’s 27 years as a collegiate coach, his teams have won 20 or more games 18 times, including the last seven consecutive seasons – three at Ohio State and four at Vanderbilt.

7-2 ON ROAD THE BEST UNDER FOSTER
Ohio State is 7-2 on the road this season. The Buckeyes’ 7-2 record away from Columbus is the best under head coach Jim Foster, who is in his third season at OSU.

NEW YEAR BEING GOOD TO THE BUCKEYES
The Buckeyes are 9-0 in January this year. A 9-0 record in the year’s first month is the best for a Foster-coached Buckeye squad.

`80’S STYLE
It has been two decades since Ohio State was 20-2. The 1984-85 Buckeyes were 20-2 in the first 21 games and won the next eight consecutive outings before ending the season with a 72-68 loss vs. Old Dominion March 23, 1985 in the NCAA east regional final game.

ABUNDANT ASSISTS
The Buckeyes are ranked first in the Big Ten with 18.7 assists per game, but no individual is ranked higher than No. 11 on the league leaders list. Ashley Allen is No. 11 with 3.55 helpers per game and Brandie Hoskins is No. 13 with a 3.33 average, while Kim Wilburn is No. 14 with 3.32 assists per outing.

Additionally, Caity Matter is averaging 2.6 helpers and center Jessica Davenport has a 1.6 assists average.

Of note, Matter averaged 1.97 dishes last year and entered the season with a 1.67 career assists average. Additionally, Buckeye opponents are averaging only 9.8 dishes per outing vs. Ohio State’s 18.7.

POWER INSIDE EQUALS WIN
If the Buckeyes outscore opponents inside the lane, the squad is likely to win the game. There have been only three teams this season to outscore Ohio State in the paint, but the Buckeyes beat all three opponents. Northwestern scored 32 points inside vs. OSU’s 20 Jan. 23. On Jan. 9, Liberty outscored Ohio State 28-18 and on Jan. 16, Rutgers scored 28 points vs. OSU’s 26 in the paint.

Ohio State is outscoring opponents inside by an average of 34.5 to 19.0 points per game (758-418).

While the only two teams to beat Ohio State this season – Notre Dame and Penn State – did contend in the lane vs. the Buckeyes, they fell short of outscoring OSU inside. On Nov. 20, Notre Dame scored 28 points inside vs. Ohio State’s 30 in the lane and Dec. 30, the Lady Lions tallied 30 points vs. the Buckeyes’ 32 points inside.

DAVENPORT ON WOODEN WATCH
Jessica Davenport was selected as one of the Top 20 midseason candidates for the 2004-05 Wooden Award Player of the Year and All-America Team. In late March, five players will be named to the Women’s Wooden Award All-American team. From those five, one will be the recipient of the John R. Wooden Award Trophy, presented annually to the most outstanding female collegiate basketball player. For more info, please log onto WoodenAward.com.

OVERALL UNDER FOSTER
Foster is 567-247 overall in 27 years of collegiate coaching and 63-22 in three seasons at Ohio State. In Columbus, Foster is 41-4 overall with a 32-3 mark in Value City Arena and an 9-1 record in St. John Arena.

Ohio State’s win over then-No. 21/24 Arizona Nov. 17 in Columbus gave head coach Jim Foster win No. 550 and the victory at Dayton Dec. 4 gave him win No. 50 while at Ohio State.

UP AFTER 20 A GOOD SIGN
Ohio State is 18-0 when leading at halftime this season. The Buckeyes are 1-1 when they trail at half and 1-1 when tied at half.

OVER 70 BEST FOR THESE BUCKS
Ohio State is 15-0 when scoring 70 points or more. The Buckeyes’ only two losses have come when the squad scored between 60-69 points.

MATTER DRAINING 3’S
Senior Caity Matter is a combined 14-of-26 from 3-point land in the last five games for a .538 mark.

BLANTON BRINGING THE OFFENSE
Sophomore Stephanie Blanton averaged 3.2 points per game last season. This year, she is netting 5.3 points per contest, which ranks fourth behind Jessica Davenport, Caity Matter and Brandie Hoskins, who all average double figures.

HOSKINS HOT FROM THE FIELD
Sophomore guard Brandie Hoskins has scored double digits in 16-of-20 games played, including the last 13-of-15. In her first six contests, Hoskins averaged nine points per outing. She is currently averaging 12.5 points per game and in Big Ten games, she is second on the team with 14.0 points per outing.

RPI RATINGS
In the latest WBCA/Summerville RPI rankings, Ohio State is No. 6 and the Big Ten Conference is No. 5. According to Collegerpi.com, the Buckeyes are No. 6, while the Big Ten sits at No. 3 on the conference list.

BUCKEYES LIKING DOWNTOWN
The Ohio State team averages 6.2 shots made from downtown vs. team’s 3.8 treys per outing.

MATTER SETTING STANDARDS DOWNTOWN
The Big Ten’s best 3-point shooting team can thank Caity Matter for holding her own from downtown. Matter is the league’s No. 2 shooter from outside the arc with a .459 (45-of-98) average. Matter’s 2.1 treys per game ranks No. 5 among Big Ten leaders.

As a team in overall rankings, the Buckeyes are No. 1 with 6.2 treys made per game.

MATTER CLIMBING THE SCORING LADDER
Caity Matter started her senior season ranked No. 21 among Ohio State’s career points leaders. This season, she has jumped nine spots and is currently No. 12 on the all-time scoring list with 1,361 points. The No. 12 spot was held by Larecha Jones’ 1,275 points. Jones played at OSU from 1996-99. In order to move to No. 11, Matter needs 86 points.

WINNING MARGIN LEADS THE BIG TEN
The Buckeyes are leading the Big Ten with a +23.4 scoring margin. That mark is 6.8 points higher than the second-ranked squad Minnesota, who is winning games by a margin of 16.6 points. Only three Big Ten teams are winning games by a double-figure average – Ohio State, Minnesota and Michigan State.

TIME SHARED WITH THIS SQUAD
Eight of 13 Buckeyes are averaging more than 10.0 minutes per game and only five players – Jessica Davenport, Caity Matter, Brandie Hoskins, Kim Wilburn and Ashley Allen – are clocking more than 20.0 minutes per outing. The most PT for any Ohio State player is 28.2 minutes an outing (Davenport).

MATTER AT TOP OF EVERY 3-POINT LIST
Senior Caity Matter is at the top of every 3-point career record in the Ohio State records book.

Matter went 2-for-7 vs. Liberty Jan. 9. Matter’s seven attempts gave the senior guard from Bluffton, Ohio, the record for career attempts. She is now at 591 total attempts. Katie Smith previously held the No. 1 spot with 564 attempts from 1993-96.

Matter also broke Smith’s record earlier this season for career treys made and currently has 242 career 3-pointers drained. Smith made 218 3-pointers during her career and held the No. 1 spot for eight years. She sank one 3-pointer at then-No. 24 Oregon Dec. 18 and tied the record for career treys made by an Ohio State player. Three days later vs. then-No. 20/23 UCLA Dec. 21, Matter hit her 219th career 3-point field goal at 14:02 to break the school record for treys in a career. Matter is only the third Buckeye to make at least 200 career 3-pointers. Marcie Albert is ranked No. 3 with 203 treys.

Matter is currently No. 1 with a .409 (242-of-591) career 3-point percentage.

BUCKEYES ON WITH OFFENSE
The Buckeyes are leading the Big Ten in every major offensive category except free-throw percentage. Ohio State ranks first among league leaders for scoring offense (75.0 ppg), scoring margin (+23.4), field-goal percentage (.515; 619-1203), 3-point field-goal percentage (.420; 136-324). OSU is No. 2 with a .770 (275-357) mark from the charity stripe.

Individually, Brandie Hoskins is ranked No. 4 in the Big Ten with a .592 (109-184) field-goal percentage, followed by Jessica Davenport, who is shooting .585 (151-258) and ranked No. 5 in the Big Ten, and Caity Matter, who averages 52.3 percent (103-197) and is No. 7 among league leaders.

In Big Ten games, Hoskins is No. 1 with a .610 (47-77) mark from the field and Davenport is ranked third with a 57.4 average (62-of-108).

MATTER SHOOTING BIG IN BIG TEN GAMES
Caity Matter is shooting 51.4 percent from 3-point land in Big Ten games this year. She has made 18-of-35 treys attempted and is 33-of-67 from the field for a .493 shooting average in conference contests.

MATTER SETS SINGLE GAME RECORD … AGAIN
Senior shooting guard Caity Matter sank eight 3-pointers at Michigan Jan. 11. The eight treys tied the Ohio State single-game record she set Dec. 1, 2003 vs. IUPUI. Matter was 8-of-11 from 3-point land, 10-of-13 from the floor and tied her career-high mark of 28 points vs. the Wolverines.

SCORING FROM THE SIDELINES
The Buckeyes’ bench is getting utilized this year and the help is proving its worth. Ohio State players coming off the bench are averaging 21.6 points per game (476 total) vs. opponents’ 11.8 points per contest (260 total) from the reserves.

Purdue, Notre Dame and Rutgers are the only three schools to outscore the Buckeye bench this season. The Fighting Irish, who beat the Buckeyes 66-62 Nov. 20, had eight points vs. Ohio State’s seven points from non-starters. Purdue’s bench tallied 25 points vs. Ohio State’s 10 scores in a 63-50 Buckeye victory Jan. 2. On Jan. 16, Rutgers’ reserves scored 25 points vs. OSU’s 13 scores.

DAVENPORT SWATS TO THIRD PLACE
Jessica Davenport had four blocked shots vs. Michigan State Jan. 6 and moved into third place on Ohio State’s career leaders list. Davenport, who replaced Francine Lewis’ 124 swatted shots, currently has 142 blocked shots. Davenport needs 24 to take over No. 2 and 100 to become the school’s career leader for swatted shots in Buckeye history. Mary Sivak tallied 241 blocks during her tenure at Ohio State from 1979-82.

Davenport is leading the Big Ten with 2.8 blocked shots per outing. Of note, Davenport added eight blocked shots to her first double-double of the season (16 points, 13 rebounds) at Dayton Dec. 4. Eight blocks is a career-best mark for the sophomore center from Columbus.

BUCKEYE DEFENSE DOING WELL
Ohio State – the Big Ten’s best shooting squad – is doing its part on defense as well. The squad is No. 1 and No. 4 in scoring defense (51.5 ppg) and field-goal percentage defense (.370; 423-1142), respectively.

While the Buckeyes have shot better than .500 13 times and greater than .600 twice this season, only one Ohio State opponent has shot better than .500 from the field. Then-No. 21/T22 Iowa sank 50 percent of its shots from the floor Jan. 13 in Value City Arena.

ALL THAT MATTERS AT THE STRIPE
Ohio State is No. 2 in the Big Ten with a .770 (275-357) mark from the free-throw line.

The Buckeyes are led by Caity Matter, who is No. 1 in the league with an .897 (52-58) mark. Jessica Davenport, who has made 95-of-119 free throws this season and is No. 11 in the conference with an .798 average.

Last season, the Buckeyes shot .654 from the charity stripe on the season and were ranked last in the league.

SCORING BURDEN SHARED
Jessica Davenport, Caity Matter and Brandie Hoskins are leading the team with 18.1, 13.8 and 12.5 points per game, respectively. Davenport has scored double figures in 21-of-22 games this season, Matter has scored double digits in 16-of-22 games and Hoskins has tallied double digits in 16-of-21 games played.

Davenport’s 18.1 points is No. 3 in the league, while Matter and Hoskins come in at No. 16 and No. 22 in the Big Ten, respectively.

In conference games, Davenport is averaging 19.8 scores per outing and is No. 2 among league leaders.

BLANTON’S NEW ROLE
As a rookie, sophomore Stephanie Blanton made only four treys last season. She is now 13-for-35 (.371) on the year.

DAVENPORT BIG ON THE BOARDS
Jessica Davenport is leading her team and ranked No. 4 in the Big Ten with 8.1 rebounds per outing. In conference games, the sophomore center is averaging 8.9 rebounds per game and No. 3 among league leaders.

MUñOZ SEEING DOUBLE
Michelle Muñoz has scored double digits in three of the last five games. She tallied 11 vs. Northwestern Jan. 23 and matched her season-best scoring effort with 12 points at Indiana Jan. 20. She also scored 12 points vs. Iowa Jan. 13.

MAKE IT ANOTHER FOR DAVENPORT
Sophomore center Jessica Davenport recorded her fifth double-double of the season at Indiana Jan. 20 with 12 points and 10 rebounds. It marked the ninth career double-double for Davenport.

Her 24 points and 12 rebounds against Purdue Jan. 2 was double-double No. 4 of the season. Davenport scored 20 points and collected 12 boards for her third double-double vs. then-No. 20/23 UCLA Dec. 21. Davenport had 12 points and 11 rebounds for her second double-double of the season in the victory at Oregon Dec. 18. Davenport’s first double-double of the season was a 16-point and 13-rebound performance at Dayton Dec. 4.

NO. 3 TOPS FOR A BUCKEYE TEAM
The Ohio State women’s basketball team has been ranked No. 3 in the last two Associated Press polls. The Buckeyes are on a nine-game win streak, are 7-1 vs. Top 25 teams and have won the last six outings vs. ranked opponents.

A No. 3 ranking in the AP poll ties the best ranking for any Buckeye squad. The 1992-93 Ohio State team was ranked No. 3 twice in March of 1993 before OSU went to the Final Four that season and fell to Texas Tech, 84-82.

DAVENPORT NAMED PLAYER OF WEEK FOR SECOND TIME
Ohio State women’s basketball player Jessica Davenport was named Big Ten Co-Player of the Week, the Big Ten Conference announced Jan. 17. Davenport averaged 20 points and 7.3 rebounds in the Buckeyes’ victories over Michigan Jan. 11, then-No. 21/T22 Iowa Jan. 13 and then-No. 4/7 Rutgers Jan. 16.

Davenport, who is sharing the honor with Penn State’s Tanisha Wright, has now won conference player of the week accolades twice this season. She was first honored Jan. 3.

Davenport scored 19 at Michigan and vs. Iowa and netted a game-best 22 points vs. Rutgers. For the week, Davenport was a combined 24-of-41 from the field for a .585 average and shot 92 percent from free-throw line, including a 7-of-8 performance vs. Rutgers.

The sophomore center from Columbus averaged 7.3 boards and tallied four assists, five blocked shots and one steal in the three contests. Davenport hit her first-career 3-pointer in the first half of the Rutgers game and played 31.3 minutes per outing.

KNOCKING OFF NO. 4 – SECOND-HIGHEST OPPONENT IN VCA
Ranked No. 4 at the time, Rutgers was the second-highest opponent to play in Value City Arena when the Scarlet Knights and the Buckeyes played Jan. 16. Ohio State won 52-50 vs. Rutgers. Second-ranked Purdue is the highest team to ever play in VCA and the Boilermakers knocked off Ohio State 64-56 on Jan. 26, 1999. Purdue went on to win the national championship that year.

HIGHEST-RANKED WIN FOR FOSTER’S BUCKEYES
Ohio State beat then-No. 4/7 Rutgers 52-50 Jan. 16 in Value City Arena. The Scarlet Knights were the highest-ranked opponent the Buckeyes have beaten under head coach Jim Foster. Earlier this season, Ohio State beat then-No. 6/6 Michigan State 68-54 Jan. 6, which at the time was the highest-ranked win for the Buckeyes under Foster.

During the 2002-03 season, Ohio State defeated No. 10/11 Purdue 56-51 in Value City Arena. Last year, the Buckeyes defeated No. 10/10 Minnesota 75-57 at home.

FIRST “W” WHEN TRAILING AFTER 20
Ohio State trailed 21-16 at halftime vs. Rutgers Jan. 16 and went on to win, 52-50. It was the first victory for a Buckeye team when the team trailed after the first 20 minutes.

The only other game the Buckeyes have trailed at half was vs. Notre Dame Nov. 20. The Buckeyes were losing 29-25 in South Bend, Ind., and eventually fell 66-62 to the Fighting Irish.

DAVENPORT FROM DOWNTOWN?
Against Rutgers Jan. 16, sophomore Jessica Davenport hit her first-career 3-pointer. Davenport was 1-for-1 from downtown in the Rutgers game and is 1-for-3 on the season. She did not attempt a trey during her rookie campaign.

70 IN THE SECOND
Against Rutgers Jan. 16, Ohio State shot .765 percent (13-of-17) from the field in the second half. The Buckeyes have shot 70 percent or better in the second 20 minutes in three games this season. In the first half vs. the Scarlet Knights, the Buckeyes’ 16 points and .261 (6-of-23) field goal percentage in the first stanza were season-low marks for OSU.

SEASON HIGH SEATS FILLED
There were 8,145 people on hand to watch the Ohio State vs. Rutgers game Jan. 16 in Value City Arena. That is a season-high mark for a Buckeye game – home or away.

TOP 25 OPPONENTS
In the previous 12 games, Ohio State has faced six Top 25 teams and has tallied victories over all six opponents. This season, Ohio State is 7-1 overall vs. Top 25 teams and 6-0 against ranked opponents at home.

Under head coach Jim Foster, Ohio State is 10-3 all-time and 5-0 this season against ranked opponents in Value City Arena, with a 1-0 record this year vs. Top 25 teams in St. John Arena.

The Jan. 16 matchup with then-No. 4/7 Rutgers was the highest-ranked opponent for Ohio State. The Buckeyes won, 52-50. The then-No. 6/6 Michigan State fell to the Buckeyes, 68-54, Jan. 6 in Value City Arena. The Fighting Irish were No. 10/11 when OSU lost 66-62 in South Bend, Ind., Nov. 20.

The Buckeyes also beat then-No. 20/20 Purdue 63-50 Jan. 2 in Value City Arena (VCA), then-No. 20/23 UCLA 83-60 Dec. 21 in VCA, then-No. 24 Oregon 73-58 Dec. 18 in Eugene, Ore., and then-No. 21/24 Arizona 78-45 Nov. 17 in VCA.

The only OSU loss vs. a Top 25 squad this year was a 66-62 loss at then-No. 10/11 Notre Dame in the final game of the 2004 Sportsview.tv Preseason WNIT Nov. 20 in South Bend, Ind.

DAVENPORT’S FIRST PLAYER OF WEEK HONOR
On Jan. 3, Jessica Davenport was named Big Ten Player of the Week for the first time in her career. Davenport’s honor was the first for a Buckeye player since teammate Caity Matter was honored Feb. 16, 2004. Davenport averaged 22 points and 10.5 rebounds vs. Penn State Dec. 30 and then-No. 20/20 Purdue Jan. 2. In the two game combined, Davenport shot .519 (14-of-27) from the field and .800 (16-of-20) from the free-throw line. A sophomore center from Columbus, Ohio, she also notched three assists, two blocked shots and two steals in the two conference contests. The Buckeyes dropped a 69-62 decision at Penn State, but bounced back to beat the Boilermakers, 63-50, in Value City Arena. Davenport’s 24 points and 12 rebounds vs. Purdue was her fourth double-double of the season and her eighth career double-double.

+70 A RECORD
The Buckeyes beat Ohio, 107-37, Dec. 1 in Athens, Ohio. Ohio State’s 70-point win tied the school record for the largest margin of victory. Ohio State beat Akron 105-35 on Feb. 22, 1977. The win was the Bobcats’ worst lost in program history. Ohio’s previous worst lost was 52 points at Iowa in 1991.

The previous biggest margin of victory for a Buckeye team under head coach Jim Foster was a 48-point win. Foster’s Ohio State teams had beaten two squads by 48 points: 96-48 vs. IUPUI Dec. 1, 2003 in Value City Arena and 89-41 vs. Bowling Green Nov. 12 in Value City Arena.

107 THE HIGHEST UNDER FOSTER
Ohio State’s 107 points vs. Ohio Dec. 1 was the highest points total this season and the most for any Buckeye team coached by Jim Foster. The Buckeyes’ previous season-high was 89 points against Bowling Green (Nov. 12) in the season opener. Ohio State’s 46 points in the first 20 minutes of play vs. Ohio Dec. 1 was the most in the first half this year.

The last time a Buckeye team scored at least 100 points, was vs. Wayne State Nov. 26, 2002 in Foster’s second-ever game at the helm of the Buckeyes.

The most points ever scored by a Buckeye team was a 119-point performance vs. Idaho State Dec. 11, 1994. The Buckeyes won, 119-63.

SEVEN REACH DOUBLES
The Buckeyes had seven players reach double figures in scoring vs. Ohio Dec. 1. Tamarah Riley had 18, Caity Matter scored 14 points, Stephanie Blanton, Jessica Davenport, Beth Howe and Michelle Muñoz all netted 12 and Candace Dark tallied 11 scores. Seven players in double digits is the most this season. Ohio State had five players reach double figures against St. Joseph’s (Nov. 14).

ALLEN BACK IN THE STARTING MIX
Ashley Allen has started in 17 consecutive games and is back in the starting mix for head coach Jim Foster. The Buckeye Classic games vs. Yale Nov. 27 and vs. Bradley Nov. 28 marked her first two starts since Feb. 19, 2003 at Illinois when she was injured and forced to miss the rest of the season. Allen played in six games in 2003-04 but did not make a start and in 2002-03, she started in all 25 games she played.

ALLEN SHOOTS HER WAY BACK
Ashley Allen officially returned to the Buckeye lineup against Bowling Green for the first time since Dec. 20, 2003. Allen scored 17 points vs. the Falcons and made a career-high five 3-pointers (of six attempted) against the Falcons.

Allen’s previous record was four 3-pointers drained vs. UNC Wilmington Dec. 25, 2003.

MATTER A CLASS ACT
Ohio State women’s basketball player Caity Matter was named a finalist for the 2004-05 Bayer Advantage Senior CLASS Award by the organizing committee of the award. The Senior CLASS Award is an acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School. The award is given to the outstanding male and female senior NCAA Division I basketball player annually and originated from the award’s honorary chairman, CBS sportscaster Dick Enberg.

A national media committee will select 10 finalists for the award in February of 2005. In March, a nationwide fan ballot will be paired with results from a vote of coaches and media to determine the winners. The winner will be announced by Enberg during the CBS telecast of the 2005 NCAA Men’s Final Four.

Courtney Coleman, a former Ohio State regional Kodak/WBCA All-American honorable mention pick and four-year Buckeye letterwinner, was named a second team Senior CLASS Award winner in 2003.

THE BUCKEYE BASKETBALL SHOW WITH Jim Foster
“The Buckeye Basketball with Jim Foster Show” began its 10-week run Jan. 9. The half-hour show, which is hosted by WBNS’ Ryan Miller, will be aired on WBNS statewide at 11 a.m. Sunday mornings. It will be replayed on Ohio News Network Sunday nights. Please check local listings for the ONN air times.

BUCKEYE CLASSIC NOTES
The Ohio State vs. Bradley game Nov. 28 was the 12th time Ohio State has made it to the title game in 13 years of the Buckeye Classic. In 1983 – during the first year of the Buckeye Classic – Georgia and Clemson met and Georgia won the title, 78-64. The Buckeyes have won the Buckeye Classic seven times, including the previous four events in a row. The last two MVP’s of the Buckeye Classic are underclassmen on the Ohio State team. Sophomore center Jessica Davenport earned the honor this season and classmate Brandie Hoskins was tabbed the Buckeye Classic’s MVP last season when she was a rookie.

BUCKEYE CLASSIC ALL-TOURNEY TEAM MEMBERS
Jessica Davenport and Caity Matter were named to the 2004 Buckeye Classic All-Tournament Team. Davenport, the most valuable player, was 16-of-27 from the field and tallied a total of 37 points, 12 rebounds, six assists, four steals, five blocked shots and only two turnovers. Matter was 7-of-13 form the field, scored 22 points and had seven assists, six rebounds and four steals. Davenport and Matter were also named to the Sportsview.tv 2004 Preseason WNIT All-Tournament Team.

PRESEASON WNIT WRAP-UP
Ohio State beat Bowling Green, 89-41, Nov. 12 and blew by Saint Joseph’s, 76-29, Nov. 14 in rounds one and two of the 2004 Sportsview.tv Preseason WNIT. In the semifinals vs. No. 21/24 Arizona, the Buckeyes won, 78-45, and earned the program’s first trip to the finals of the preseason WNIT. The first three games were in Columbus, Ohio (with round one and the semifinal game being held at Value City Arena and round two taking place in St. John Arena), but the Buckeyes had to travel to South Bend, Ind., to face then-No. 10/11 Notre Dame in the final game Nov. 20.

Notre Dame tallied victories at home over Illinois State (92-73), Nebraska (73-57) and No. 6/6 Duke (76-65) on its path to the final game of the preseason WNIT event, fought for the title in a close game vs. the Buckeyes. In a back-and-forth battle with seven lead changes and nine ties, Ohio State led, 62-54, with 5:18 to play, but Notre Dame went on a 12-0 run to close the final five minutes of the game and earn the championship.

It was the second preseason WNIT run for Ohio State. The Buckeyes were also in the 1995 event and faced Pittsburgh Nov. 15, 1995. The Buckeyes beat Pitt, 85-50. In the second round of that year’s preseason WNIT, the Buckeyes beat Maine in the second round, 93-64, before falling to Arkansas, 86-80. Then-senior Katie Smith, who is currently a student assistant for the Buckeyes, was named to the 1995 Preseason WNIT All-Tournament team.

PRESEASON WNIT ALL-TOURNEY SELECTIONS
Ohio State’s Jessica Davenport and Caity Matter were named to the Sportsview.tv 2004 Preseason WNIT All-Tournament Team. For the tournament, Davenport averaged 17.8 points, 6.3 boards and 2.5 rebounds per game, while shooting .581 from the field (25-of-43) and making all 21 free throws she attempted. Matter averaged 14.3 points, 3.8 assists and shot .467 (21-of-45) from the field and 7-for-7 from the charity stripe in the four games.

BUCKEYES BREAK WNIT TREY RECORDS
The Buckeyes have set two preseason WNIT team records: 3-pointers in a game and 3-pointers in a tournament.

Ohio State made 13 3-pointers (of 20 attempted) vs. Bowling Green Nov. 12. The previous mark was held by Connecticut, who drained 12 treys vs. Fairfield Nov. 9, 2001. Ohio State was .650 from beyond the arc vs. the Falcons, due primarily to Ashley Allen, who was 5-of-6 from downtown, Caity Matter, who hit 2-of-4, and Michelle Muñoz, who hit both 3-pointers attempted.

The Buckeyes’ 27 3-pointers accumulated during the four preseason WNIT contests beat the previous mark of 23 treys in a tournament set by the University of Arkansas in 1995.

FOSTER IN ST. JOHN ARENA
The Buckeyes beat Saint Joseph’s, 76-29, Nov. 14 in St. John Arena. Under Foster, the 47-point differential is the largest Buckeye margin of victory in St. John Arena. The next closest for a Foster-coach squad was a 43-point victory over Wright State, 88-45, Dec. 18, 2003. Foster’s Buckeye squads are 8-1 in St. John Arena, with the lone loss coming in the NCAA tournament last year in second-round action vs. Boston College.

DEFENDING VS. THE HAWKS
Besides impressive offensive performances by the Buckeyes, Ohio State’s defense deserves some credit as well. OSU held Saint Joseph’s to 29 points, which is one more than the lowest output by any Buckeye opponent – 28 points by Purdue Feb., 6, 1976. The Buckeyes beat the Boilermakers, 61-28.

THE EARLY BIRD GETS THE WORM
The Nov. 12 game vs. BGSU was the earliest start in Buckeye history since dates for games were recorded beginning in the 1974-75 season. The next earliest start was a Nov. 15, 1995 game in the preseason WNIT vs. Pittsburgh.

USING THE SUMMER DOWN UNDER
While most of the women’s basketball team spent time lifting weights, conditioning and playing in the summer leagues in Columbus, one player gained experience of another sort. Jessica Davenport was a member of the 2004 Big Ten Basketball Foreign Tour Team and scored double-digits in all four contests abroad. She averaged 15.0 points and 6.8 boards per outing as a member of the undefeated 12-player roster under the direction of Indiana’s Kathi Bennett. Bennett’s team went 4-0 in Australia during the 11-day trip.

PRESEASON KUDOS
The Ohio State women’s basketball team opened the season tied for ninth place in the preseason USA Today/ESPN/WBCA Coaches’ Poll and No. 10 in the Associated Press poll. Both polls were released the week off Nov. 15. In other preseason rankings, the Buckeyes are No. 6 according to Women’s Basketball News Service, No. 8 in Athlon and No. 13 among Lindy’s rankings.

COACHES’ FAVORITE
Ohio State was picked to finish first in the coaches’ Big Ten preseason poll, in front of Michigan State and Minnesota. The media chose Purdue No. 1, the Buckeyes No. 2, and Penn State No. 3. Ohio State was the only squad named in both polls.

ESPN.COM ACCOLADES
Senior Caity Matter was listed as one of the Top 5 off-guards in the country and a “Fresh Face To Watch” by ESPN.com. Sophomore center Jessica Davenport was an honorable mention pick by ESPN.com for Top 5 centers in the country. Davenport has faced two players who were named to the Top 5 centers list in Liberty’s Katie Feenstra and Arizona’s Shawntinice Polk. The Buckeyes beat both Liberty and Arizona. Davenport will play another Top 5 center in Minnesota’s Janel McCarville Feb. 17.

EARLY HONORS FOR DAVENPORT
Buckeye sophomore center Jessica Davenport, the media’s pick for 2004 Big Ten Freshman of the Year, was named a member of both the media and the coaches’ preseason all-conference teams. Davenport averaged 12.5 points, 5.7 rebounds and 2.6 blocked shots per game in her rookie campaign.

SMITH’S SECOND GOLD
Katie Smith, a student assistant in the Ohio State women’s basketball office and a former two-time All-American at OSU, was one of the first seven members named to the 2004 USA Basketball Women’s Senior National Team. Smith represented the U.S. at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens and despite suffering an injury in Athens, aided her team in capturing a gold medal – the second overall for Smith. A Logan, Ohio, native, Smith is also a member of the WNBA’s Minnesota Lynx. She is a four-time All-WNBA player and a four-time WNBA All-Star and plans to return to the WNBA in 2005 once she recovers.