NORTHWESTERN WILDCATS

Official Store

    Wildcats Set to Tip Off Conference Season

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM Junior A.J. Glasauer and NU play Minnesota in the Big Ten opener on Thursday.
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    Junior A.J. Glasauer and NU play Minnesota in the Big Ten opener on Thursday.
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM

    Dec. 27, 2005

    Minnesota Game Notes
    Download Free Acrobat Reader

    CHICAGO, Ill. -- After a brief break for the holidays, the Wildcats (4-6) embark on the 24th season of Big Ten Conference women's basketball, opening the season against No. 15/15 Minnesota (7-2) at 6 p.m. on Thursday. The game will be played at Loyola University's Gentile Center as part of a Chicagoland double header. Loyola-Chicago will open Horizon League play against UW-Green Bay immediately following the first game. Tickets for the double session are $4 and parking is $5.

    "We are looking forward to the start of the Big Ten season," head coach Beth Combs said. "I like the way our team is starting to gell and I am looking forward to taking that next step as we kick off with Minnesota."

    Last Time Out...
    Thursday's game will be the second-consecutive tilt against a ranked opponent, as NU played No. 14/14 DePaul a week ago at Welsh-Ryan Arena. Three Wildcats tallied double-figures but Northwestern fell to the Blue Demons, 78-58, Thursday night at Welsh-Ryan Arena. Senior Ifeoma Okonkwo led NU with 15 points, 6-of-9 from the field, and eight rebounds.

    "We came out tonight and left it all on the floor," head coach Beth Combs said. "We don't have the Khara Smith's, but we did play hard for forty minutes. We could have folded many times tonight, and we didn't. I'm very proud of our effort."

    Junior A.J. Glasauer (Freiburg, Germany/Theodor Heuss-Gymnasium) had 12 points and four assists, while sophomore Sara Stutz added 10 points and four rebounds.

    DePaul jumped out to a 24-9 lead, and held steady throughout the first half to enter the break with a 39-26 advantage. The Blue Demons maintained the upper hand going on an 11-0 run early in the second half to secure the lead.

    The Wildcat defense forced 23 DePaul miscues.

    Scouting the Golden Gophers
    The Gophers have played a tough schedule so far, highlighted by an 84-77 victory over No. 11/9 Stanford on Nov. 20 for the title of the Subway Classic. Minnesota also won the Paradise Jam in the Virgin Islands, defeating Nevada and Virginia. The Gophers are led by preseason All-Big Ten selection Jamie Broback, who is leading the squad in scoring (13.1 ppg) and rebounding (7.6 rpg). The senior-laced team is run by April Calhoun, who has 38 assists through nine games (4.4 apg).

    The Series
    Thursday's game is the 50th time these two teams have met. Northwestern leads the all-time series, 29-20, but Minnesota has won the last 10 contests. This is the conference-opener for both squads. These two teams also opened and concluded the 2004-05 season against each other and will follow suit this year.

    Among the Nation's Leaders...
    Both schools are among the NCAA leaders as of Dec. 12. The Wildcats are tied for 19th in assists per game, averaging 17.7, while Minnesota is 13th in the country in field goal percentage with .474.

    Getting to Thursday's game...
    Thursday's match up is scheduled for 6 p.m. at Loyola University's Gentile Center, even though Northwestern will be the home team. NU's game is the first of a Chicagoland double-header, which will be followed by Loyola-Chicago taking on UW-Green Bay at approximately 8 p.m. Here's how to get to the Gentile Center:

    From the North
    Follow Sheridan Road south to Devon Avenue. Turn left (east) on Devon Avenue and proceed to Kenmore Avenue. Turn left (north) on Kenmore and proceed to the Loyola Parking Structure.

    From the North Suburbs/Wisconsin
    Take I-294 or I-94 to Touhy Avenue. Take Touhy Avenue east exit. Go east on Touhy to Sheridan Road. Go right (south) on Sheridan. Turn left (east) at the intersection where Sheridan and Devon Avenue merge and proceed to Kenmore Avenue. Turn left (north) on Kenmore and proceed to the Loyola Parking Structure.

    From Rockford, O'Hare Airport and the Northwest
    From Manheim Road, take Devon Avenue east to Kenmore Avenue. Turn left (north) on Kenmore and proceed to the Loyola Parking Structure.

    From Aurora and the West
    Take the East-West Tollway (I-88) east until it merges in to the Eisenhower Expressway (I-290). Follow I-290 into the Loop, following the signs for Lake Shore Drive North. Take LSD until it ends (at Hollywood Road). Stay in the right-hand lane and turn right (north) onto Sheridan Road. As Sheridan bends to the west, you will see the campus on the right-hand side of the street. Turn right (north) on Kenmore and proceed to the Loyola Parking Structure.

    From Joliet and the Southwest
    Take the Stevenson Expressway (I-55) north to Lake Shore Drive until it ends at Hollywood. Stay in the right hand lane and turn right (north) on to Sheridan Road. As Sheridan bends to the west, you will see the campus on the right-hand side of the street. Turn right (north) on Kenmore and proceed to the Loyola Parking Structure.

    From the South and Southwest
    Follow Lake Shore Drive until it ends at Hollywood. Stay in the right-hand lane and turn right (north) onto Sheridan Road. As Sheridan bends to the west, you will see the campus on the right-hand side of the street. Turn right (north) on Kenmore and proceed to the Loyola Parking Structure.