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    And-1 With Amy

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM Junior Amy Jaeschke and the Wildcats face Michigan on Dec. 28 in Ann Arbor.
    Junior Amy Jaeschke and the Wildcats face Michigan on Dec. 28 in Ann Arbor.

    Dec. 22, 2009

    Hi Wildcat fans,

    Since last I blogged, we have won two more games, bringing our record to 9-2. We beat Arkansas (67-55) and Chicago State (85-64). The most notable thing that occurred in these two games was Beth Marshall's performance against Arkansas. She single-handedly guided us to victory, hitting 8-of-10 from three-point range and ending up with 24 points. Not only did she record a career-high in points, but she also set an NU record for the most three-pointers made in a game. It is always great to play with someone who just cannot seem to miss. Once Beth was 6-of-6, it almost became funny when she put up her seventh and eighth three pointers and they went in. Everyone joked after the game asking her questions like why she had to miss her ninth and 10th three point shots because it was just unacceptable.

    On another note, Coach McKeown always breaks down each season into three separate, smaller sections. Season one includes all nonconference games, season two consists of conference games, and season three is postseason play. So far being 9-2 in season one, I think it is fair to say we have been pretty successful. We have only one more game against Loyola (today) to complete the first season before heading into our second season of all Big Ten play. Now that we have beaten both DePaul and Chicago State, we just have to beat Loyola to really claim the Chicagoland area bragging rights. Our next game against Michigan will be our second Big Ten contest, and should be a very good game. The Wolverine's most notable win was a one-point triumph over No. 8 Xavier. This team is going to be a big defensive challenge for every Northwestern player because four out of their five starters average double figures.

    With no class, our team has used the extra time to do some fun activities. Each class (seniors, juniors, sophomores and freshmen) have been assigned to host a night where they have the whole team over and are in charge of entertainment. The juniors--my class--recently hosted our night by facilitating a competitive 'game night.' We played both Charades and Pictionary. Monday night, the seniors and freshmen combined their activity. The seniors had us all make gingerbread houses and decorate Christmas cookies while the freshmen made dinner and had a gift exchange. For the gift exchange, everyone was assigned a teammate and had to find a toy that represented their personality. After we saw what present represented each of us, we donated the gifts to Toys for Tots. It has been fun having everyone get together and interact without basketball being in the picture. The next activity will be hosted by the sophomores after our break, so we will see what they have planned since they have kept it a secret up to this point. The suspense is killing me!



    Now and throughout some of my future blogs, you will hear me talk a lot about the challenges of being a student-athlete. One very difficult thing, mainly for those who live so far away, is not having enough time off to make it home. We have three days off this Christmas. Most girls from out of town have not been home since they packed everything for school back in September. I know that they, and the local girls, are really looking forward to these few days off where we can be at home and enjoy some much-deserved time with family. We have our game against Loyola on the 22nd at 1 p.m. Assuming our game ends at 3 p.m., we will have 97 hours before our next practice at 4 p.m. on the 26th. For my out-of-town teammates this often feels like mere seconds. Being away from home for such long stretches of time is a difficult thing to deal with but we all knew what we signed up for when we committed to play college basketball. I hope everyone is enjoying this holiday season!

    Until next time...

    Happy Holidays and Go 'Cats!

    Amy J.