Flames Seek Season Sweep of Valparaiso Monday
Feb. 9, 2014
VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS: Green Bay 81, UIC 54 (Feb. 8)
A LOOK AT VALPARAISO
UIC GAME NOTES
FLAMES SEEK SEASON SWEEP OF VALPARAISO
The fifth-place UIC women's basketball team (17-6, 6-4 HL) seeks a season sweep of Valparaiso (3-18, 1-7 HL) Monday night (Feb. 10). Tip-off with the Crusaders is set for 7:05 p.m. CT inside the ARC. UIC’s 17-6 overall record is the program’s best mark through 23 games in program history.
LAST TIME OUT
UIC dropped a Horizon League contest at home Saturday (Feb. 8) with an 81-54 loss to Green Bay (14-7, 7-2 HL). Green Bay was 11-of-18 from beyond the arc and held the Flames to 29 percent shooting (17-of-58). The Phoenix used a 28-4 run early in the second half to pull away from the Flames.
UIC was out-rebounded (40-32) for only the fourth time this season. Green Bay racked up 20 second-chance points and received 35 points from its bench. Nine different players scored for Green Bay, who shot 55 percent from the field (26-of-47).
Valparaiso rounded out the preseason poll in ninth place. The Crusaders top the Horizon League with a .784 free throw percentage, which ranks fourth in the nation. Valpo is led by senior guard Charae Richardson, who averages 10.8 points and 3.4 assists per contest. Junior forward Sharon Karungi contributes 9.1 points and 6.8 rebounds per game.
UIC defeated Valparaiso at home last month (Jan. 21) by a final score of 69-51. The Flames out-scored the Crusaders 35-15 in the second half and finished the contest on a 19-1 run. Katie Hannemann scored a game-high 18 points to lead three Flames in double-figures. Ruvanna Campbell (15) and Terri Bender (12) also scored in double-figures for the Flames.
NATION’S SECOND LARGEST TURNAROUND
Through 23 games, UIC has collected eight more wins (17-6) than the entire 2012-13 campaign (9-21). Based on overall wins, UIC’s turnaround is the second largest in the nation. St. Bonaventure, Oregon and Jacksonville State have improved by nine wins from last season.
UIC IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS
Per the Feb. 6 NCAA report, UIC ranks in the top 100 nationally in many statistical categories. The Flames are 23rd in rebounding margin (+7.4), 35th in win-lost percentage (.739), 70th in steals per game (9.3 spg), 72nd in scoring offense (72.2 ppg), 81st in field-goal percentage (.418) and 84th in scoring margin (+5.4).
Individually, Ruvanna Campbell ranks 13th in double-doubles (15), 14th in rebounding (11.4 rpg) and 53rd in field-goal percentage (.526). Terri Bender ranks 16th in steals (2.9 spg) and Rachel Story is 65th in scoring (18.1 ppg).
UIC IN NCAA'S RPI RANKINGS
UIC's 11-game win streak (Nov. 15-Jan. 3) helped the Flames to their highest RPI ranking of the season (64). UIC currently sits No. 120 in the rankings behind Wright State (90) and Green Bay (109) amongst Horizon League programs.
The Flames collected a victory over a top 100 program in Wisconsin, who ranks No. 83. UIC also picked up a win over a top 150 program in Butler (121).
NEAR THE TOP OF THE LAND OF LINCOLN
Past the halfway mark of conference play, UIC is second amongst all Division I Illinois programs with 17 victories. DePaul is first with 18 wins while Northwestern is third with 14 victories. Western Illinois picked up its 12th win Thursday.
The rest of the state programs include Eastern Illinois (10), Illinois (9), Loyola Chicago (9), Northern Illinois (8), SIUE (7), Illinois State (6), Bradley (5), Southern Illinois (4) and Chicago State (3).
FLAMES DOMINATING THE PAINT
The strong play of Ruvanna Campbell and Katie Hannemann has allowed UIC to dominate opponents inside the paint. UIC ranks first in the Horizon League in rebounding margin (+7.4) and offensive rebounds (16.7 per game). The Flames are 17-2 when out-rebounding their opponent.
The Flames also rank second in scoring defense (66.7 ppg) and third in blocked shots (3.0 bpg). UIC's strong inside play has helped the Flames score an average of 72.2 points per contest, good for third in the Horizon League. Last season, the Flames averaged 62.9 points through 23 games (7-16 record).
CHARITY STRIPE VISITS
One of UIC's biggest improvements since last season has been taking advantage of the free throw line. UIC leads the Horizon League by making an average of 17.4 free throws on 26.2 attempts per game. Through 23 games of the 2012-13 campaign, the Flames made an average of 10.9 free throws on 16.7 attempts per contest.
UIC has made 20-plus free throws seven times this season while the 2012-13 squad had two 20-plus efforts overall. UIC is 13-2 when attempting more free throws than its opponent.
WINNING THE TURNOVER BATTLE
Over the last nine games, UIC has won the turnover battle six times and posted a stellar +3.7 turnover margin. The Flames are forcing opponents to commit 17.9 turnovers over that span and are averaging a League-high 11.1 steals per game.
UIC is 10-3 when winning the turnover battle. The Flames rank second in the Horizon League in steals (9.3 spg) and are one of five conference programs with a positive turnover margin (+1.3).
CAMPBELL AMONGST THE NATION’S BEST
Redshirt sophomore Ruvanna Campbell is one of only six players nationally averaging at least 16 points, 11 rebounds and shooting over 50 percent from the field. Add in at least one steal and one block per game and the group is narrowed down to three players. The players in that elite group are Campbell, Stanford’s consensus All-American Chiney Ogwumike and Wake Forest’s Dearica Hamby.
CAMPBELL A DOUBLE-DOUBLE MACHINE
Ruvanna Campbell picked up her fifth straight double-double and 20-point performance against Green Bay with 22 points and 13 rebounds. Over the last five contests, Campbell is averaging 22.8 points, 14.2 rebounds and shooting 58.0 percent from the floor (47-of-81).
Campbell owns nine 20-point performances and five 15-plus rebound efforts. She has been in double-figures in all but one contest (8 points at Wisconsin). Campbell’s career high of 21 rebounds at Oakland (Jan. 18) are the sixth highest nationally in a single game this season and the fourth best in program history.
Campbell leads the Horizon League in double-doubles (15), rebounds (11.4 rpg) and offensive rebounds (4.6 per game). Campbell also ranks second in field-goal percentage (.526), third in blocks (1.3 bpg), eighth in scoring (16.5 ppg), eighth in steals (1.8 spg) and eighth in minutes played (33.3 per game). She was named the Horizon League's "Player of the Week" on Jan. 6.
The last UIC player to average over 11 rebounds a contest was Tracy Manuel (11.3 rpg) in 1983-84. There have been six seasons in program history in which a player has averaged a double-double. The last UIC player to average a double-double was Dejeanette Flournoy in 2003-04 (11.8 ppg, 10.3 rpg).
STORY IN DOUBLE-FIGURES
Senior Rachel Story picked up her 19th double-figure performance of the season against Oakland (Feb. 4) with 15 points. Story owns nine 20-point performances this season. Her career high of 34 points against Cleveland State (Jan. 25) is the fifth highest in program history and third highest in the Horizon League.
Story is averaging 18.1 points and shooting 33.0 percent from downtown (36-of-109). She ranks fourth in the Horizon League in scoring, second in minutes played (36.7 per game), ninth in free-throw percentage (.772) and tenth in three-pointers made (1.7 per game). Story also contributes 1.6 steals per contest.
Story has been named the Horizon League's "Player of the Week" twice this season (Nov. 25 and Dec. 23). Story (849 career points) entered the program's Top 20 scorers against Green Bay. She is on pace to finish her career with over 950 points.
HANNEMANN CLEANS UP THE GLASS
Redshirt senior Katie Hannemann has helped UIC lead the conference in rebounding as she ranks sixth in the Horizon League with 7.7 caroms per contest. Additionally, she ranks fourth in the conference in offensive rebounds (3.2 per game).
Hannemann scored 16 points against Oakland (Feb. 4) for her 17th double-digit effort. She has posted five double-doubles, including 15 points and 14 rebounds at Oakland (Jan. 18).
Hannemann scores 12.7 points per contest and ranks fifth in the Horizon League in field-goal percentage (.484). Over the last six games, Hannemann has converted 54.5 percent of her field-goal attempts (30-of-55).
Hannemann passed Jo Ellen Swanson (1982-87) into 19th place in program history with 879 career points. She is on pace to finish her career with over 950 points.
BENDER’S STRONG DEFENSE
Sophomore Terri Bender is playing the best defense of her career. She collected four more steals against Green Bay and has averaged 3.3 steals over the last nine contests.
Overall, Bender leads the Horizon League with 2.9 steals per game. Offensively, Bender picked up her first career double-double (20 points, 11 assists) at Detroit (Jan. 16) and tied her career-high with 22 points at Milwaukee (Jan. 29).
Bender is scoring 9.0 points per contest after 6.3 per game last season. Her 3.9 assists per game rank seventh in the Horizon League. Bender is also pulling down 4.4 rebounds per game after averaging 2.5 caroms during her freshman season.
KOBEL MOVES UP THE RECORD BOOK
Senior Emily Kobel finished 3-of-8 from three-point land against Green Bay and is tied with Sara Petersen (1994-98) for sixth place in program history with 128 career made three-pointers. Kobel is on pace to finish her career in sixth place with over 135 made three-pointers.
Kobel was a perfect 5-of-5 from three-point land at Detroit (Jan. 16) and tied her career high of 17 points. The performance is the Horizon League’s most efficient from beyond the arc.
Kobel is knocking down 31.7 percent of her three-point attempts (39-of-123) and 79.2 percent of her free throws (19-of-24). She ranks 12th in the conference in made three-pointers (1.7 per contest).
Kobel has also pulled down a career-high 4.7 rebounds per game. Kobel had averaged 2.1 rebounds per contest in her career entering this season.
11-GAME WIN STREAK FACTS
UIC had its 11-game win streak snapped in a 66-50 loss at Green Bay on Jan. 8. The streak tied the longest win streak in program history, which occurred from Jan. 11-Feb. 24, 2007. The win streak also ranked as the sixth longest in the nation.
Seven of the 11 wins were at road or neutral sites. Additionally, four of the 11 victories were over 2012-13 WNIT participants (Idaho State, Miami Ohio, Texas Southern and Butler).
The win streak was Regina Miller's longest as a head coach. Miller had two 10-game win streaks at UNLV (2001-02 and 2003-04 seasons). The 2001-02 Lady Rebels (23-8) earned a trip to the NCAA Tournament while the 2003-04 squad (26-8) advanced to the WNIT Championship game.
COLLEGEINSIDER.COM MID-MAJOR TOP 25 POLL
After weeks of being in the "Others Receiving Votes" section, UIC cracked the Top 25 of the Jan. 7 edition of CollegeInsider.com's Mid-Major Poll. The Flames debuted at No. 22 after receiving 119 votes in the ninth edition of this season's poll. UIC spent four weeks in the poll before dropping out this past week (Feb. 4).
Wright State (No. 13) and Green Bay (No. 21) currently represent the Horizon League in the poll. The most renowned mid-major head coaches in the country make up the voting panel for the poll, which is in its fourth year of existence. Gonzaga (20-3) is ranked No. 1 in the poll and No. 20 in the AP Top 25.
THE WIN AT WISCONSIN
The 58-56 victory at Wisconsin on Dec. 21 was the sixth win over the Badgers in program history and the first in 34 seasons (1979-80 season). It snapped a 13-game win streak by the Badgers in the series.
UIC has collected 25 Big Ten victories in program history and nine since the Flames became a Division I program in 1980-81. The win is UIC's third Big Ten road victory in the Division I era. The Flames have also defeated Northwestern twice away from the UIC Pavilion (2002-03 and 2004-05).
THE WIN AT BUTLER
UIC's 62-57 victory at Butler on Dec. 7 marked the program's third road win over a Big East opponent and first in 31 years. The last time the Flames defeated a Big East opponent away from the UIC Pavilion was on Nov. 23, 1982, when UIC pulled out a 76-61 decision at Marquette. UIC's first Big East road victory came at Marquette (66-63) on Feb. 12, 1981.
The win at Butler was also the first victory over a Big East opponent in 12 seasons. UIC's most recent Big East victory came at home against St. John's (65-52) on Nov. 18, 2001. UIC has collected 13 Big East victories in program history and six of those wins came prior to the Division I era.
HANNEMANN AND STORY EARN PRESEASON HONORS; UIC PICKED FORTH
Katie Hannemann and Rachel Story were voted Preseason First Team All-Horizon League. Additionally, UIC received three first-place votes in the poll and was picked to finish fourth in the Horizon League's preseason poll by the League's head coaches, SIDs and media members.
Both Hannemann and Story had stellar years in 2012-13. Hannemann was voted Second Team All-League while Story was selected to the All-Newcomer squad. The duo combined to average nearly 30 points per game and led the Flames in scoring in 24 of their 29 regular season contests.
TWO NEW ASSISTANT COACHES
UIC head coach Regina Miller added two new assistant coaches to the program over the summer. Eric Simpson, who served as the head coach at Loyola the past four seasons, and Tiffany Sardin, a Chicago native and three-year captain for the University of Virginia, joined the coaching staff in July 2013.
Simpson guided Loyola to their first-ever Horizon League Championship game this past March. The Chicago native and graduate of Northwestern (1994) spent the last seven years at Loyola, including the final four seasons as head coach, where he compiled a record of 57-66 (.463).
Sardin spent last season on the Mt. Olive College coaching staff. As an assistant coach at Mt. Olive, Sardin helped the Trojans compile an 18-12 record and an appearance in the NCAA Division II Championship, marking their second-ever postseason berth.