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Feb. 14, 2004

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THE TIP
The Ohio State women’s basketball team (14-8; 6-5 Big Ten) travels to take on the Spartans of No. 15/17 Michigan State (19-4; 9-3 Big Ten) at 1 p.m. EST Sunday in The Breslin Center (14,759). The game will be televised on Fox Sports Chicago with Dave Eanet and Toni Roesch and can be heard on WOSU 820 AM with Marty Bannister and Kristin Watt.

This is the second meeting this season between OSU and MSU. Michigan State, who was ranked No. 23/25 when the teams met Jan. 15 in Columbus, Ohio, beat the Buckeyes, 55-47 and snapped Ohio State’s 24-game home winning streak – which was ranked second in the country at the time behind Texas.

SCOUTING MICHIGAN STATE
No. 15/17 Michigan State is 19-4 overall and 9-3 in league play. The Spartans have won three in a row since dropping a 78-67 game vs. Iowa at home Feb. 1. Like Ohio State, Michigan State has fallen to Penn State and Purdue. The Spartans lost 64-62 at PSU and 77-67 vs. Purdue in East Lansing. The squad’s only other loss was at Oklahoma State, 62-60, Dec. 2.

Two players are averaging double digits for head coach Joanne P. McCallie. Lindsay Bowen and Liz Shimek, who were 2002 Co-Big Ten Freshmen of the Year, score 13.6 and 11.1 points, respectively, while Kristin Haynie adds 9.1 points per game. Shimek, who stands at 6-feet-1-inch, is the squad’s leading rebounder with 8.3 boards per outings and ranks third among league leaders. Michigan State swipes the second-most steals in the Big Ten with 9.9 per game and is led by Haynie, who averages a Big Ten-best 2.96 steals per game. Defensively, the Spartans are ranked No. 1 in scoring defense (54.0) and defensive field-goal percentage (.367). MICHIGAN STATE’S JOANNE P. McCALLIE
Joanne P. McCallie enters her fourth season at the helm of the Michigan State women’s basketball program. McCallie is the fourth coach in Spartan history and took over the reigns of the program when Karen Langeland retired after 24 years as the Spartan leader. Entering the 2003-04 season, McCallie had an overall career record of 213-116 (.647) and was 46-43 (.517) at Michigan State.

Prior to joining the ranks of Michigan State, McCallie spent eight years at the University of Maine, where she recorded a 167-73 overall record with the Black Bears. She guided Maine to six consecutive NCAA tournament appearances, two North Atlantic Conference Championships, two America East Conference championships and five regular-season conference titles.

LAST TIME OUT VS. NO. 10/10 MINNESOTA
The Ohio State women’s basketball team (14-8; 6-5 Big Ten) upset No. 10/10 Minnesota (18-4; 7-4 Big Ten), 75-57, Thursday night at Value City Arena in Columbus, Ohio. Junior Caity Matter led all scorers with a career-high 28 points, including a 24-point first-half effort. Freshman Jessica Davenport and senior LaToya Turner scored 13 and 12 points, respectively. Turner grabbed a team-best nine rebounds and sophomore point guard Kim Wilburn tallied four steals, five assists and no turnovers.

Minnesota’s Lindsay Whalen hit a shot from downtown with 13:03 to play in the first and tied the ball game at nine. Matter slid in the path of All-American Whalen on a fast-break bucket at 12:35, which sparked Ohio State’s 34-9 run to close the first half. Matter assisted Davenport on the go-ahead bucket at 12:05 and scored seven consecutive points during the next 1:10. Matter capped the run when she stripped the ball from a Minnesota player with 15 seconds left and subsequently drained her fourth 3-pointer of the half with three ticks left.

Two Davenport free throws at 15:23 in the second half gave Ohio State its largest lead, 51-23. The Golden Gophers would only come as close as 17 points when Shannon Schonrock sank a 3-pointer with 6:50 remaining.

Freshman Brandie Hoskins and Wilburn each scored nine points and Stephanie Blanton and Beth Howe added two points apiece. The trio of Matter, Davenport and Wilburn each pulled down seven boards, and Davenport and Blanton finished with four and two blocked shots, respectively.

McCarville, who had 16 points, nine rebounds and a career-high nine assists, led Minnesota. Kadidja Andersson scored 11 points and Schonrock tallied nine points. Whalen suffered a right hand injury in the final minutes of the first half and did not return to the game.

TAKING DOWN NO. 10
Unranked Ohio State upset No. 10/10 Minnesota Thursday night in Columbus, 75-57. The Buckeyes moved to 2-4 vs. the Top 25. The last win vs. a ranked opponent was a 73-59 victory at then-No. 21/23 UC Santa Barbara Dec. 28. Ohio State fell vs. then-No. 23/25 Michigan State, then-No. 7/8 Purdue, then-No. 7/8 Penn State and again vs. then-No. 5/6 before tallying the 18-point victory over the Golden Gophers.

LIKE BUTTA
Ohio State’s Caity Matter exploded in the first-half vs. No. 10/10 Minnesota. The junior shooting guard was on a roll when she outscored Minnesota’s 18-point first-half effort herself with 24 of her career-best 28 points coming in the first half. Matter gave momentum to the Buckeyes when the game was tied at nine when she slid in the path of All-American Lindsay Whalen on a fast-break bucket and took the charge, which sparked Ohio State’s 34-9 run to close the first half. Matter assisted rookie Jessica Davenport on the go-ahead bucket at 12:05 and scored seven consecutive points during the next 1:10. Matter capped the run when she stripped the ball from a Minnesota player with 15 seconds left and subsequently drained her fourth 3-pointer of the half with three ticks left until halftime.

The most points she had scored in a half this season was a 19-point effort at Northwestern. Matter outscored the entire Ohio University team last year in the first half when she scored 17 points compared to the Bobcats’ 11 Dec. 13 in Athens, Ohio.

Additionally, after not scoring a 3-pointer at then-No. 5/6 Purdue last Sunday, Matter drained all four of her six total attempts in the first half vs. Minnesota.

LEADER OF THE PACK
Caity Matter has been the leading scorer for Ohio State in 10 games this year – including the last three in a row – and is averaging a team-best 14.7 points per outing. Matter has also been the scoring leader for both squads in six games – most recently vs. No. 10/10 Minnesota Thursday (28 points).

IN NEED OF ONE
Junior Caity Matter needs one trey to move to move to tied for third on the all-time 3-pointers made list. Matter has accumulated 180 total treys in 71 games as a Buckeye and stands alone at No. 4 on the list. Jamie Lewis holds the third spot among Buckeye leaders with 181 3-pointers in 117 total games.

ON FIRE
The country’s top-shooting squad lived up to its reputation when the Buckeyes drained 59.1 percent (26-of-44) of its shots vs. Minnesota Thursday. Leading the way was Caity Matter, who was 11-of-15 (.733) from the field and 4-of-6 (.667) from downtown.

The Buckeyes’ .510 stroke overall is credited in part to freshman Jessica Davenport, who is playing 25.7 minutes a game and has started in 13 games as a Buckeye – including the last eight, three of which were 40-minute outings – is scoring 12.5 points per game and is leading the Big Ten in all games with a .640 stroke from the field. Her average would be ranked No. 3 in the country, but the minimum requirement is 5.0 made field goals per game and Davenport is averaging 4.7 makes per outing. Veteran LaToya Turner is ranked No. 3 in the Big Ten with a .562 average.

The Buckeyes have shot .500 or better in 12-of-21 games this year, including two of the last three outings. Ohio State is 10-2 this season when it shoots .500 or more and 4-6 when it shoots less than .500.

WILBURN SOLID ACROSS THE BOARD
Kim Wilburn played a team-high 36 minutes vs. Minnesota Thursday and produced solid numbers across the board. Wilburn was 3-of-5 from the field and 3-of-4 from the charity stripe. She finished with nine points, seven rebounds, five assists, zero turnovers and four steals.

THE STRIPE SAYS IT
The Michigan State matchup will be interesting when it comes to free-throw shooting. While the Spartans shoot .755 from the line – a mark that is No. 2 in the league – the Buckeyes have struggled with the freebies and average a conference-low .643. However, the Buckeyes redeemed themselves with a .857 stroke (18-of-21) vs. Minnesota Thursday night.

RELYING ON THE BENCH
Ohio State is relying on the bench this season in a big way. Four out of the five players on the bench available to head coach Jim Foster are averaging at least 11 minutes per game and the Buckeyes have outscored opponents 392-221 with bench points.

JUMPING UP THE LADDER
Entering the Minnesota contest, senior LaToya Turner was ranked No. 19 on the Ohio State rebounding list. She collected nine boards vs. Minnesota and upped her career total to 535 caroms, which jumped her two spots to the No. 17 spot on the all-time OSU leader board. Turner needs 22 boards to move to No. 16.

Prior to the Golden Gopher contest, Turner had 1,019 career points. Her 12-point effort Thursday night moved her to No. 21 and just three points shy of No. 20.

FIVE SWATS FOR THE FROSH RECORD
Rookie Jessica Davenport is on pace to break Mary Sivak’s record of 51 blocked shots as a freshman. Currently, she has racked up 46 rejections as a Buckeye, has blocked at least one shot in 19-of-22 games and averages 2.1 swatted shots an outing – a mark that is ranked No. 3 in the conference.

BIG TEN BANDIT
Buckeyes and Spartans, beware this Sunday. OSU sophomore Kim Wilburn is leading the conference in Big Ten games with 3.27 steal per game, while Michigan State’s Kristin Haynie averages a Big Ten-best 2.96 swipes in all games. The next closest players behind Wilburn for Big Ten games are Haynie and Indiana’s Jenny DeMuth, who both tally 2.75 swipes per outing in Big Ten contests.

A DEFENSIVE BATTLE
Michigan State and Ohio State hold the top two spots in the league, respectively, for scoring defense. The Spartans hold teams to 54.0 points per game and the Buckeyes hold opponents to 56.2 points per outings. Additionally, teams only shoot .367 (No. 1 in Big Ten) vs. MSU and .378 (No. 2 in Big Ten) vs. OSU.

CLOCKING THE TIME
Sophomore Kim Wilburn and freshman Jessica Davenport clocked 40 minutes at then-No. 5/6 Purdue Feb. 8. It was Wilburn’s fourth 40-minute outing of the season – the first was at Nebraska, the second was at Illinois and the third was at Michigan – and the ninth of her career. Wilburn, who is averaging a Buckeye-best 32.3 minutes an outing, led the team last season as a freshman with 34.8 minutes per game, including five 40-minute contests, three of which came in the final four games of the year. Davenport played 40 minutes in the two opening games of the Big Ten season vs. then-No. 23/25 Michigan State and vs. then-7/8 Purdue and also clocked a full game at then-No. 5/6 Purdue.

TURNER’S 10TH
Senior center LaToya Turner earned her third season and 10th career double-double at Purdue last Sunday with 13 points and 10 rebounds in Mackey Arena. Turner is averaging 12.3 points and a team-high 6.4 rebounds per game. Turner is ranked No. 17 on Ohio State’s rebounding list and No. 22 on the points list.

BLOCKS GALORE
Ohio State is leading the Big Ten in conference contests with 5.36 swats an outing. The team set a season-high mark with nine blocked shots at Purdue last Sunday. Kim Wilburn led the way with a career-best three rejections, while freshman Jessica Davenport, junior Caity Matter and senior LaToya Turner swatted two shots apiece vs. the Boilermakers. For the year, the Buckeyes have 91 blocked shots compared to opponents’ 33.

Ohio State is led by Turner and rookie Davenport, who stand at 6-feet-3-inches and 6-feet-5-inches, respectively. Among league leaders for all games, Davenport holds the No. 3 spot with 2.1 swatted shots per game and during Big Ten battles, Turner is No. 4 with 2.1 blocks per outing. Turner is notching 1.8 in all games. The pair has combined for 79 of Ohio State’s 91 blocked shots. Veteran Turner is ranked second among OSU career block leaders. The Buckeyes have held six teams to zero blocks this season.

Both Turner and Davenport have had a five-block game this season and with those marks, both student-athletes tied the Value City Arena record for an Ohio State player. The record is held by none other than Turner, who swatted five attempts vs. Wisconsin-Green Bay Dec. 10, 2000.

LUCKY SEVEN
Sophomore point guard Kim Wilburn forced seven steals, including two in the final 1:25 of the game to bring the Buckeyes back to within two points of then-No. 5/6 Purdue last Sunday after trailing by 13 earlier in the game. Seven swipes ties Wilburn’s career high mark, which she set at Indiana and vs. Iowa last season.

TURNER IN THE CLUB
No. 32 senior center LaToya Turner added to the historic Buckeye win at Iowa Feb. 5 when she hit a layup with 2:34 left in the first half and became the 22nd member of Ohio State’s 1,000-point club. Turner has racked up a total of 1,031 career points to date.

GUARDS PULLING THROUGH
Senior LaToya Turner and freshman Jessica Davenport are averaging 6.4 and 5.4 rebounds per game, respectively, for the Buckeyes this season. Besides the two forwards, the guards are contributing to the rebound count in a big way. Kim Wilburn is averaging 4.0, Caity Matter is grabbing 3.8 and Brandie Hoskins is pulling down 3.0 boards per outing.

THREE MORE IN A ROW
The then-No. 5/6 Purdue game Feb. 8 began the Buckeyes’ second three-game swing against three consecutive Top 25 opponents this season. Ohio State played host to No. 10/10 Minnesota at home Thursday and will cap the swing against the Spartans of No. 15/17 Michigan State Sunday.

The first three-game Top 25 swing began Jan. 15 vs. then-No. 23/25 Michigan State in Value City Arena. MSU beat the Buckeyes, 55-47. The Spartan win snapped Ohio State’s 24-game consecutive home winning streak, which ranked second in the country at the time. One week after the contest vs. MSU, then-No. 7/8 Purdue came to VCA and beat the Buckeyes, 74-68. Ohio State faced then-No. 7/8 Penn State Jan. 25 and fell 70-64.

Ohio State beat then-No. 21/23 UC Santa Barbara, 73-59, Dec. 28 at The Thunderdome in Santa Barbara, Calif. After a 57-54 loss at then-No. 5/6 Purdue last Sunday and an upset win vs. No 10/10 Thursday, Ohio State is now 2-4 vs. the Top 25.

COUNT ON TURNER
Senior LaToya Turner has been consistent this season and has scored in double figures every game she has played in except two – 13 vs. IUPUI, 16 vs. Nebraska, 10 vs. Wright State, 10 vs. Penn, 16 vs. UCSB, 14 vs. Wisconsin, 15 vs. Rutgers, 12 at Illinois, 13 at Northwestern, 11 vs. Purdue, 15 vs. Penn State, 10 at Michigan, 19 vs. Indiana, 11 at Iowa, 13 at Purdue, 12 vs. Minnesota.

Turner returned to the lineup against IUPUI Dec. 1 after missing the first three games of the year because of an injury suffered in preseason and missed the game vs. then-No. 23/25 Michigan State Jan. 15 because of a concussion suffered in practice. The 2000 Big Ten Freshman of the Year, Turner is averaging 12.3 points, 6.4 rebounds and 1.8 blocked shots per outing.

THREE DOUBLES THIS YEAR
LaToya Turner has three double-doubles to her name this season and 10 for her career. Her third double-double was a 13-point, 10-rebound effort at then-No. 5/6 Purdue Feb. 8. Turner earned her second season double-double vs. UCSB with 16 points and 11 boards and her first double-double of the season was against Penn Dec. 21 with 10 points and 10 rebounds.

ALMOST 19 YEARS TO THE DAY
It was almost 19 years to the day that the current Buckeye basketball team made history and beat the Hawkeyes at Iowa, 93-82, Feb. 5. No Ohio State team – not even the 1993 Final Four squad – had left Iowa City with a win since a 56-47 victory Feb. 3, 1985. It took 16 tries, but the Buckeyes broke the pattern Thursday and were victorious in Carver-Hawkeye Arena – only the fourth such win of its kind in Buckeye program history.

MULTIPLE SCORERS THE KEY
It is no secret Ohio State has been relying on a myriad of players to score this season. And for the Buckeyes, that seems to be the best formula. In games when four or more players score in double digits, Ohio State is 6-0. When three players score in double digits, OSU is 6-4 and if two or fewer Buckeyes score 10 or more points, Jim Foster’s group is 2-4.

For the first time this season, six Ohio State players scored double digits in the squad’s 93-82 victory at Iowa Thursday. Junior Caity Matter led the OSU scoring effort with 24 points, followed by Kim Wilburn, rookie Brandie Hoskins, sophomore Michelle Muoz, LaToya Turner and freshman Jessica Davenport who scored 16, 15, 12, 11 and 10 points, respectively.

During the championship game of the Buckeye Classic vs. Penn Dec. 21, five Ohio State players scored in double digits for the first time this season. Hoskins netted 22, Davenport swished 20, Matter scored 12 and Turner and Wilburn each sank 10.

Five times this season two or fewer players scored in double digits for the Buckeyes – against Illinois (L), Rutgers (L), UNC Wilmington (W), St. John’s (W), UCLA (L) and Michigan State (L).

FIRST WIN WHEN DOWN AT HALF
Entering the Iowa game, the Buckeyes had dropped all seven games when they were trailing at halftime. Despite a 40-36 advantage in favor of the host Hawkeyes, Ohio State was able to use an 11-0 run and consistent shooting from the free-throw line to earn the first victory of the season when down at half. After a 57-54 loss at Purdue, in which the Boilermakers led 26-24 at half, the Buckeyes are now 1-8 when trailing at the midway mark.

RELYING ON THE POSTS
Since LaToya Turner returned to the lineup after missing the Jan. 15 Michigan State game in Columbus due to a concussion suffered earlier that week in practice, she and rookie Jessica Davenport have made quite an impact offensively for the Buckeyes. The previous seven games, Davenport and Turner have combined for 197 of the squad’s 475 total points and the pair is a combined 79-for-142 (.556) from the field.

FRESH FEBRUARY
Ohio State ended a three-game losing streak with a 51-49 win at Michigan Jan. 29 and capped a 2-5 record for the month. Last season, the opposite was true for Jim Foster’s squad, as the team posted a 6-2 mark in January and went on to tally an even 4-4 record in February. Ohio State is 3-1 for the month.

10 STEALS FROM NO. 17
Six-foot-3-inch senior center LaToya Turner is not limited to rebounds and points. She tallied two steals vs. Indiana (Feb. 1) and now is ranked No. 18 on the all-time steals list with 120. Turner needs 10 swipes to take over the No. 17 spot among OSU record holders.

ANOTHER FIVE-BLOCK GAME
Jessica Davenport blocked five shots vs. Indiana (Feb. 1) and has now blocked at least one shot in 19-of-22 games this season. Five rejections ties her career-high mark, which she set vs. Michigan State Jan. 15, and once again ties the Value City Arena record for an Ohio State player, which was set by senior LaToya Turner vs. UW-Green Bay Dec. 10, 2000. Turner tied her own mark in her first game back this season with five blocked shots vs. IUPUI Dec. 1.

MATTER’S FIRST DOUBLE-DOUBLE
After a few games when she was held below her scoring average, the Buckeyes’ leading scorer Caity Matter rebounded in a big way at Michigan Jan. 29. Matter pulled down a personal-best 10 boards and scored 15 points in a 51-49 victory over the Wolverines, not to mention being credited with the assist on LaToya Turner’s final bucket to cap the Buckeye victory in Ann Arbor.

REVERSING THE TRENDS
Not only was the 51-49 Michigan win a big step for the Buckeyes, who hade struggled on the road with a 3-4 mark outside of Columbus up until that game, but the victory over the Wolverines was the first win of the season when the margin is less than five points. Jim Foster’s squad had dropped four games (at Nebraska, 60-55, at Rutgers, 56-53, at Illinois, 52-51 and at Purdue, 57-54) that were all decided by five or fewer points earlier in the season. Additionally, the Buckeyes’ road win in Ann Arbor was the first win in six games this season when scoring 59 points or less.

CRASHING A KEY
Crashing the boards is key for the Ohio State Buckeyes, who are averaging 33.6 rebounds per game compared to opponents’ 32.5 caroms a contest. When the Buckeyes outrebound teams, Ohio State is 10-1 and when opponents edge the Buckeyes, Jim Foster’s squad drops to 4-7.

SHARING THE ROCK
As a team, the Buckeyes are leading the conference and are ranked No. 11 in the country with an 18.1 assists-per-outing mark. Ohio State is led by sophomore point guard Kim Wilburn, who is No. 3 with 5.41 dishes per game and freshman Brandie Hoskins, who is No. 8 with 3.55 assists per Big Ten outing.

AND TAKING CARE OF THE ROCK
Not only are Buckeyes willing to hit an open player with a No. 1 ranking in the Big Ten (18.1 assists per game), but the team is taking care of the ball as well. Ohio State is ranked second in the Big Ten with a 1.13 assist-to-turnover ratio. That figures is thanks primarily to sophomore Kim Wilburn, whose 1.8 assist-to-turnover ratio is ranked fourth among league leaders, and freshman Brandie Hoskins, who aids the effort with a No. 5 1.7 ratio in the conference.

DAVENPORT MATCHING COLEMAN
Each time Jessica Davenport has tallied a double-double this year, she has moved her name into the Value City Arena record books for Ohio State individual high marks. In her first double-double vs. Florida A&M Nov. 23 (23 points, 12 boards), Davenport’s 14 free throw attempts vs. Florida A&M tied an Ohio State VCA record set by former Buckeye Courtney Coleman vs. Indiana Jan. 31, 2002. (She upped the mark with 16 free-throw attempts vs. Indiana Feb. 1.)

In her second and third double-doubles vs. then-No. 23/25 Michigan State Jan. 15 (16 points; 15 rebounds) and vs. then-No. 7/8 Purdue Jan. 22 (27 points, 15 rebounds), Davenport gathered 15 rebounds each game and tied the Value City Arena record for a Buckeye best, which also is held by Coleman, who collected 15 caroms twice during her career in VCA.

SEEING DOUBLE
Rookie Jessica Davenport tallied her second consecutive double-double (third career) with a career-high 27 points and 15 rebounds, which ties her personal-best mark, vs. then-No. 7/8 Purdue Jan. 22. Her second double-double of the season came against then-No. 23/25 Michigan State when she tallied 16 points, 12 of which were scored in the second half, and 15 rebounds Jan.15 in Value City Arena. Her first double-double as a Buckeye was vs. Florida A&M when she scored 23 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and blocked four shots off a 7-of-11 day from the field and an 9-of-14 stroke from the charity stripe.

TOUGH BIG TEN
The Big Ten conference is no joke – competition will be tight and every win counts. The conference is ranked No. 1 in the latest RPI poll and four Big Ten teams are ranked in the Top 25, including three in the Top 10.

THREES IN 42-OF-45
Junior shooting guard Caity Matter has made a 3-pointer in 42-of-45 games, dating back to Dec. 20, 2002 vs. Youngstown State. The only games she has not hit a trey was at Illinois Jan. 8, vs. then-No. 7/8 Penn State Jan. 25 and at then-No. 5/6 Purdue Feb. 8. Until the game in Champaign, Ill., she had hit a trey in 36 consecutive games. Matter’s 2.55 treys per game average is No. 2 in the Big Ten.

COLUMBUS STREAK COMES TO A HALT
Ohio State was ranked second in the country with 24 games for the longest home winning streak in the country behind Texas’ 27 wins in Austin prior to facing then-No. 23/25 Michigan State Jan. 15 in Value City Arena. The Spartans won 55-47 and snapped the Buckeyes’ streak. The 24-game Buckeye win streak dated back to the final two games of the 2001-02 season and ranks second in Ohio State women’s basketball history. The longest home winning streak is 26 games, which began in January of the 1987 season and lasted until December of 1988. Under Jim Foster, Ohio State is 24-3 in Columbus dating back to the beginning of the 2002-03 season.

SCORING BIG BETTERS BUCKEYES
Scoring and scoring big has helped the Buckeyes this season. When Ohio State scores 60 or more points, Jim Foster’s team is 13-2, however when they are held to 59 points or fewer, they are 1-6. In five of the team’s losses, OSU scored between 51 and 56 points (51 at Illinois; 53 vs. Rutgers; 55 vs. Nebraska; 56 vs. UCLA; 54 at Purdue) and vs. then-No. 23/25 Michigan State the Buckeyes were held to 47. Ohio State has scored 80 or more points five times this season – 96 vs. IUPUI, 95 points vs. Penn, 93 at Iowa, 88 vs. Wright State and 83 vs. Ohio.

ALLEN OUT AGAIN
Ohio State women’s basketball player Ashley Allen suffered a knee injury in the Dec. 20 game vs. St. John’s and will not return for the remainder of the season. Allen, who missed the opening game vs. Ohio and returned to the court vs. Florida A&M after suffering a similar injury last January at Illinois, was averaging 5.5 points, 1.7 rebounds and was shooting .417 from the field and .500 from 3-point land.

UCSB WINNING STREAK ENDED
Ohio State’s 73-59 victory at then-No. 21/23 UCSB Dec. 28 snapped the Gauchos’ 27 consecutive game winning streak at home, a mark that ranked second in the country behind Connecticut’s 63 wins in Storrs, Conn. as of Dec. 28.

Additionally, the Buckeyes shot .529 for the game, including a .654 stroke in the second half. Prior to the contest, UCSB had held the last 111 opponents to less than .500 shooting dating back to the final game of the 1999-00 season.

MVP’S ALL AROUND
While freshman Brandie Hoskins was named the MVP of The 2003 Wonder/Hostess Buckeye Classic, look no further than the current Ohio State bench for the last MVP of the event. Student assistant and two-time Ohio State All-American Katie Smith was named the most valuable player of the 1994 Buckeye Classic.

BULLS EYE FOR DAVENPORT
Freshman Jessica Davenport has already placed herself among the Top 10 twice for single-game shooting accuracy (minimum 10 attempts). She was 11-for-13 from the field vs. Wright State and her .846 percentage (11-of-13) from the field is tied for 10th all-time for a single-game mark from the field for a Buckeye. Two games later, Davenport scored 20 points off a 9-of-10 night from the field. Her 9-of-10 accuracy is tied for third place among Buckeye single-game leaders. Additionally, her 8-for-10 stroke vs. then-No. 7/8 Penn State is tied for 16th on the all-time list.

BUCKEYES SET STROKE RECORD
The Buckeyes’ .720 effort (36-of-50) from the field vs. Wright State is an all-time high percentage for an Ohio State team in a single game. The next closest mark was a .689 stroke (42-of-61) vs. Central Michigan Dec. 21, 1985. For the season, Ohio State’s next closest shooting prior to the record-setting performance vs. the Raiders was a .632 stroke vs. Penn Dec. 21.

MATTER SETS OSU SINGLE-GAME TREY RECORD VS. IUPUI
Junior shooting guard Caity Matter earned a single-game record with eight 3-pointers made vs. IUPUI Dec. 1. The previous record of seven was set by former two-time All-American and current student assistant Katie Smith vs. Northwestern Jan. 15, 1995. Matter tied the mark with seven makes from downtown Jan. 16, 2003 at Wisconsin.

RECORDS VANISHING AT THE VCA
Ohio State’s 14 3-pointers drained as a team against IUPUI Dec. 1 is a Buckeye Value City Arena record for makes from 3-point land. Foster’s squad rewrote the previous record of 10 during the game vs. UNC Wilmington Nov. 25 with 12 3-pointers nailed as a team.

After opening with .385 and .375 mark from behind the arc vs. Ohio and Florida A&M, respectively, Ohio State shot a season-best .667 (12-of-18) from 3-point land vs. UNCW Nov. 25. That mark gave Ohio State a Buckeye record for 3-point percentage in Value City Arena. The previous record was earned when the Buckeyes shot .615 from behind the arc vs. Pittsburgh Dec. 2, 1998. That 3-point percentage mark has stood since the first year the VCA was used as the home of Ohio State women’s basketball. Ohio State continued the hot shooting from downtown with a .609 (14-for-23) stroke against IUPUI Dec. 1. As a team the Buckeyes are shooting a league-best .529 from the 3-point line.

Freshman Jessica Davenport tied a Value City Arena record (set by Courtney Coleman Jan. 31, 2002) with 14 trips to the free-throw line vs. Florida A&M (Nov. 23). Against Indiana Feb. 1, Davenport had career highs with 10 free throws made and 16 free throws attempted – both marks are Value City Arena records for an OSU player.

FOSTER AND MATTER HONORED BY USA BASKETBALL
Jim Foster, head coach of the 2003 USA Basketball World Championship For Young Women Team last summer, was named the 2003 USA Basketball Developmental Coach of the Year by the USA Basketball Executive Committee. Junior shooting guard Caity Matter, who was selected to the Young Women Team from the USA Basketball Women’s National Team Trials last spring, earned a spot as part of the 2003 USA Basketball Team of the Year, which also was selected by the USA Basketball Executive Committee. Both Foster and Matter (as part of the team) have been nominated by USA Basketball for the U.S. Olympic Committee’s Developmental Coach of the Year and Team of the Year awards, respectively, which will be announced by the USOC at a later date.

Foster’s squad finished with a 7-1 record and collected the inaugural FIBA World Championship For Young Women gold medal in Sibenik, Croatia, last summer.

NEW FACES ON STAFF
WNBA Minnesota Lynx forward Tamika Williams and Erin Wright were named assistant coach and director of basketball operations, respectively, for the Ohio State women’s basketball program over the summer. A student assistant for the Buckeyes last season, Williams’ primary duties will include on-the-floor coaching and recruiting responsibilities and Wright, who served as the director of basketball operations for two seasons at Vanderbilt under Foster, will be managing the day-to-day operations of Buckeye basketball, including travel, camp and schedule coordination.

SMITH NAMED TO 2004 USA BASKETBALL SENIOR NATIONAL TEAM
Katie Smith, a student assistant in the Ohio State women’s basketball office and a former two-time All-American at OSU, is one of the first seven members named to the 2004 USA Basketball Women’s Senior National Team. Smith will be part of the team that is expected to represent the U.S. at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens. 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.

THE VOICES OF THE BUCKEYES
Tune to WOSU 820 AM for complete coverage of all Buckeye basketball games this season. Marty Bannister will replace Herb Howenstine, who moved to Texas last summer, as the play-by-play announcer. Color commentary duties will be shared by a trio of former Ohio State players in Alysiah Bond (1992-95), Toni Roesch (1983-86) and Kristin Watt (1982-85).

MEET THE FRESHMEN
Freshmen Stephanie Blanton, Jessica Davenport and Brandie Hoskins will be sporting Scarlet and Gray this year. Stephanie Blanton, the 2003 Dispatch/Agonis Club Co-Player of the Year, averaged 23.5 points, 11.5 rebounds, 3.8 assists, 2.0 steals and 1.5 blocks at Lancaster (Ohio) High School. Davenport, a 2003 McDonald’s All-American, averaged 17.1 points, 11.0 rebounds, 5.1 blocks, 2.3 assists and shot 64 percent from the field last year at Independence (Columbus) High School. Hoskins, the 2003 Division II All-Ohio Player of the Year, tallied an average of 15.9 points and 6.0 rebounds at Chaminade-Julienne.

WAITING IN THE WINGS
Tia Battle, a junior transfer from Vanderbilt University, also will join the Ohio State women’s basketball team this season. A six-foot guard/forward from Plymouth, Minn., she spent two seasons with the Commodores and started in 16-of-30 games, averaging 5.5 points, 2.3 rebounds and 18.5 minutes per game last year. A 2001 Minnesota Gatorade Player of the Year and 2000 NIKE All-American, Battle also was a three-time Street & Smith Honorable Mention All-America selection. Battle will sit out the 2003-04 campaign per NCAA transfer requirements, but will have two years of eligibility remaining when she begins competing with the Buckeyes next season.

HISTORIC ST. JOHN ARENA
Ohio State and St. John Arena will play host to the 2004 NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship First and Second Round Games March 20 and 22. Tickets for all women’s basketball games and for all other Ohio State athletics events can be purchased at www.hangonsloopy.com or by calling 1-800-GOBUCKS.

Two times during the 2002-03 regular season the Buckeyes hosted games in historic St. John Arena and the tradition will continue this season. The Dec. 18 contest against Wright State, which the Buckeyes won 88-45, was in St. John Arena and the Feb. 19 Northwestern game will also be held in the former long-time home of Buckeye hoops.

Last season, Ohio State faced then-No. 17/18 Texas Jan. 5 and Big Ten foe Michigan Feb. 27 in St. John. Ohio State beat the Longhorns, 70-66, and wrapped up the regular-season portion of their schedule with a 70-55 victory over the Wolverines.