January 3, 1998
Women's Hoops Looks to Rebound at Indiana
Cats and Hoosiers Battle on Sunday Afternoon
Northwestern Wildcats (4-8, 0-1 Big Ten)
Indiana Hoosiers (10-4, 2-0 Big Ten)
Sunday January 4th, 1998 - 1 p.m. CST
The Wildcats hit the road for the first of four-straight
contests away from Welsh-Ryan Arena, beginning with Sunday's
matchup at Indiana. Northwestern is coming off a 77-69 loss
Friday at home to Michigan. The 'Cats and Wolverines battled
tough early, with NU holding a 25-23 lead with 7:21 left in the
first half. However, a 19-0 Michigan run over the next 5:26
gave UM a 42-25 lead. Freshman Dana Leonard made two
three-pointers in the final 1:55 to close the gap to 15 points
at intermission. NU battled throughout the second half, but
never got within five points as Michigan earned the victory.
Leonard's 15 points off the bench led the Wildcats, followed by
14 apiece for Megan Chawansky and Kristina Divjak. Divjak also
added a career-high five steals along with three assists and
three blocks in the game. Amber DeWall led NU with a
career-high 11 rebounds.
Record vs. Indiana
This will mark the 40th all-time meeting between Northwestern
and Indiana, with the Wildcats holding a 23-16 advantage. The
Wildcats swept the series last season, winning 81-78 in
Evanston and 88-75 in Bloomington.
Head Coach Don Perrelli
Don Perrelli (Southern Connecticut State, 1961) is in his 14th season at the helm of the Wildcats and 22nd
as a collegiate head coach. He has compiled a 407-224 overall mark and a 232-153 record with the Wildcats.
NU has advanced to postseason six times during Perrelli's tenure.
Divjak Leads the Big Ten in Scoring
All-America candidate Kristina Divjak currently leads the Big
Ten Conference and ranks 11th in the NCAA in scoring, averaging
22.1 points per game. She also entered the week atop the Big
Ten in three pointers made and three-point percentage. Not to
be forgotten, as well, is the fact Divjak also ranks among the
Big Ten leaders in blocked shots.
Divjak led the 'Cats in scoring the first 11 games of the
season, including a season-high 30 points against Clemson. She
has topped the 20-point mark in seven contests.
Megan Chawansky - The Total Package
Preseason All-American guard Megan Chawansky may not be flashy,
but she definitely has one of the most well-rounded games in
the Big Ten.
Last year, Chawansky was one of only two players in the Big Ten
to average 15.9 points, 6.3 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 1.7
steals per game (Illinois' Ashley Berggren).
This season, despite a slow start, Megan continues to display
an all-around game with 14.6 points, 6.4 rebounds, 3.8 assists
and 1.2 steals per game. Here's her game-by-game stats from
the last five games:
Opponent Pts. Reb. Asst. Stl.
Eastern Illinois 15 7 6 1
St. Bonaventure 14 11 4 0
@ SW Texas State 15 8 2 2
@ Texas 23 8 5 2
Michigan 14 6 2 0
DeWall Leads the Big Ten in Assists
Senior point guard Amber DeWall entered the weekend leading the
Big Ten in assists, averaging 6.2 per contest. Last year, she
was second in the conference and 11th nationally with 6.6 apg.
DeWall has improved her overall play since last season,
currently leading the team with 6.7 rebounds per game and third
on the team with 10.4 points per game. Her 15 points in the
win over Southern Illinois was a career-best. She also ranks
third in the Big Ten in assist-to-turnover ratio at 1.58-to-1
DeWall currently owns 408 career assists, good for fifth place
on the all-time NU assist chart. Connie Erickson is in fourth
place at 448.
Where They Rank
Here's where NU ranks statistically (Big Ten as of Jan. 2, NCAA as of Dec. 15):
Kristina Divjak (1st Big Ten, 11th NCAA) 22.8 ppg
Megan Chawansky (13th Big Ten) 14.6 ppg
Kristina Divjak (1st Big Ten) .392
Kristina Divjak (1st Big Ten) 2.82 tpg
Amber DeWall (1st Big Ten) 6.2 apg
Amber DeWall (3rd Big Ten) 1.58-to-1 TO ratio
Megan Chawansky (4th Big Ten) 1.54-to-1 TO ratio
Kristina Divjak (t10th Big Ten) 0.6 bpg
Team Asst/TO Ratio 1st Big Ten 1.01-to-1
3pt/game 2nd Big Ten 5.27 tpg
3pt % 4th Big Ten .345
Assists 5th Big Ten 16.00 apg
Scoring Offense 6th Big Ten 73.8 ppg
FT Pct. 6th Big Ten .664
Divjak Named to NIT All-Tournament Team
Forward Kristina Divjak was named to the all-tournament team at
the Preseason NIT. In NU's four contests, Divjak averaged 22.0
points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game. In addition,
she averaged 2.5 three pointers made per game. Divjak led all
players in scoring during the tournament with 88 points. UConn
All-American Nykesha Sales had 86 points, followed by
Nebraska's Anna DeForge with 80 points.
All-Time NU Record Book Watch
Career Points Career Assists
t10. Cole/Wiesen (1,206) 3. Laura Wiesen (474)
12. Kristina Divjak (1,139) 4. Connie Erickson (448)
Megan Chawansky (985) 5. Amber DeWall (408)
Career Three-Pointers Made Career Three-Point Attempts
2. Moira Kennelly (173) 2. Moira Kennelly (454)
3. Kristina Divjak (163) 3. Kristina Divjak (390)
5. Megan Chawansky (80) 5. Megan Chawansky (229)
The Wildcats earned the 14th-highest grade point average last
year among all NCAA Division I women's basketball teams. NU
was the only Big Ten school ranked among the top 25
academically, with a team GPA of 3.267. The 'Cats were one of
six teams from last year's NCAA tournament to make the WBCA
Honor Roll. The others were Oregon (fourth), Toledo (fifth),
Maine (seventh), Kansas State (eighth) and Harvard (15th).
Fri., Jan. 16 vs. Wisconsin - Pack the Place Night
7 p.m. tipoff - A new attendance record could be set when the
'Cats take on the Badgers. All seats for this game (reserved
and general admission) are just $1.
Fri., Feb. 6 vs. Ohio State - Take a Girl to the Game Day 7:30
p.m. tipoff - All kids will be admitted free for this game as,
for the third-straight year, Northwestern takes part in
National Take a Girl to the Game Day. Last year, 75 college
campuses and more than 250,000 people took part nationwide.
Here's the preseason accolades garnered by the Wildcats:
Women's Basketball News Service
Megan Chawansky - Second-team All-American
Kristina Divjak - Third-team All-American
Street and Smith's
Kristina Divjak - Honorable mention All-American
National Ranking - "Best of the Rest"
The Sporting News
Kristina Divjak - "Best Shooter in the Big Ten"
WNUR Radio- The Official Carrier of NU Women's Hoops
21 games are scheduled to be broadcast this season by WNUR 89.3
FM, the Northwestern student station. The remaining schedule
is as follows: Jan. 7 (at Loyola-Chicago), Jan. 11 (at Ohio
State), Jan. 13 (Purdue), Jan. 16 (Wisconsin), Jan. 18
(Minnesota), Jan. 23 (at Illinois), Jan. 30 (Penn State), Feb.
1 (at Wisconsin), Feb. 6 (Ohio State), Feb. 8 (Iowa), Feb. 10
(DePaul), Feb. 13 (Indiana), Feb. 15 (at Michigan), Feb. 20 (at
Purdue), Feb. 27-March 2 (at Big Ten Tournament).