Women's Basketball Closes Two-Game Homestand Thursday

Jan. 30, 2013

Please note: Some of the pre-printed tickets mistakenly have FedExForum as the location for Thursday night's game. The game will be played at the Elma Roane Fieldhouse on the University of Memphis campus. To find the Elma Roane Fieldhouse, click here.

The University of Memphis women's basketball team (12-8, 3-3 C-USA) rounds out its two-game homestand with a Conference USA match-up against Rice University (9-10, 1-5 C-USA), Thursday, in the Elma Roane Fieldhouse, at 7 p.m.

Tigers vs. Rice
This is the 11th meeting between Memphis and Rice and the Tigers lead the overall series 6-4, including back-to-back wins against the Owls in the past two seasons.

Last year, the Tigers won in Houston at Rice, 65-60, in the regular season finale, as then-junior Nicole Dickson went past the 1,000 point mark for her Memphis career. Just one year later, Dickson enters the match-up with 1,463 career points.

Rice actually won the last meeting in the Elma Roane Fieldhouse, 71-58, in 2011. Memphis then returned the favor by upending the Owls in the Conference USA tournament in the quarterfinals, 63-52, when the tournament was played at UTEP.

About Rice
In a league dominated by great guard play, Rice is guided by the league's premier post player as C-USA preseason player of the year Jessica Kuster guides the Owls. The junior post is just shy of averaging a double-double of 16.5 points and 9.9 rebounds a night and leads Rice with 29 blocks on the season. Kuster will also shoot it from three-point range, having connected on 5-of-18 attempts from beyond the arc already this season and isn't afraid to give the ball up, leading Rice with 43 assists on the season. She also has help up front, as freshman forward Megan Palmer is taking advantage of sharing the front court with Kuster, and is averaging 11.1 points and 6.6 rebounds a night.



The Owls are tough on the glass, with Germantown High School graduate Christal Porter adding 7.8 rebounds a night to go with her 6.7 ppg in her sophomore season. As a team, Rice out-rebounds its opponents by five rebounds a game (45.1 a night), a tough challenge for a Memphis team that was out-rebounded by UCF in the loss on Sunday.

The backcourt for Rice is filled with senior Jessica Goswitz, a graduate of Webb School in Knoxville. Goswitz has 42 assists on the season against 48 turnovers and chips in 4.3 points a night.

Memphis vs. Rice-- 

The Series

11/27/99 W 62-61 Home
12/2/00 L 70-58 Away
2/26/06 L 72-56


2/24/07 L 79-46 Away
2/3/08 W 62-56 Home
1/16/09 W 72-69


1/23/10 W 59-58 (OT) Home/FEF
2/13/11 L 71-58


3/10/11 W 63-52 Neutral
3/1/12 W 65-60 Away

Long Time Between Home Games
Following the game against Rice, the Tigers will not see the friendly confines of the Elma Roane Fieldhouse again until Valentine's Day when they host UAB. Memphis will play at Marshall (in Huntington, West Virginia), on Saturday, then will have their bye date on Thursday, Feb. 7th, before flying to Orlando for a rematch with UCF on Feb. 10th.

Success in the Classroom
Six members of the women's basketball team were recognized at halftime of the men's basketball game against East Carolina as members of the Fall 2012 Tiger 3.0 Club. Bilqis Abdul-Qaadir, Asianna Fuqua-Bey, Krishunda Harvey, Pa'Sonna Hope, Courtney Powell and Mooriah Rowser all had a GPA of 3.0 or higher to earn the recognition. Abdul-Qaadir, Fuqua-Bey, Powell and Rowser were also named to the Dean's List for having a GPA of at least 3.5.

Work on Glass Costs Tigers Against UCF
UCF out-rebounded Memphis 46-34 in the Tigers' loss on Sunday. The 12 point rebounding deficit was the worst of the season for Memphis, who had out-rebounded UAB by eight in the win in Birmingham. In games where Memphis is out-rebounded, the Tigers are 3-3. In games where rebounds are even, Memphis is 0-2 and in games where Memphis out-rebounds its opponents by five or more boards, the Tigers are 5-2.

Keep it Down
The Tigers' goals are quite obvious. Since league play began, Memphis is 0-3 when giving up 70 or more points and is 3-0 when holding their conference foes in the 50s. Memphis has scored between 60-66 points in five of six league games, so it's not the Tigers totals that is changing as much as it is the points being given up on the other end.

Shooting Percentages Slowing Down
As always happens when the team gets into league play, more thorough scouting reports often mean more contested shots. In the non-conference schedule, Memphis shot over 43 percent in 10 of 14 games. Since league play has begun, Memphis has hit over 43 percent in just one of six games (the win over Southern Miss).

Driving at the Rim
Memphis has faced a lot of zone lately (see shooting percentage note above). Settling for jumpers is not a huge part of the Tigers' game, but getting to the paint is. In games where Memphis has attempted 20 or more free-throws, the Tigers are 7-2. In games where they are held under 20 attempts, they are 4-5. The reverse side of that graphic is when Memphis gives its opponents 20 or more attempts at the free-throw line, the Tigers are 6-7, including 2-3 against league opponents.

Taking Care of the Ball
In the last five games, Memphis has just 52 assists against 80 turnovers (0.65 assist-to-turnover ratio). The 16.0 turnovers per game average is turning into opponent points on the other end in transition.

Tigers Assists-Turnovers in Last Five Games
Nicole Dickson 10-10
Ariel Hearn 13-17
Bilqis Abdul-Qaadir 13-11
Asianna Fuqua-Bey 3-9
Pa'Sonna Hope 1-5
Lauren McGraw 3-11
Jaymie Jackson 5-6
Ann Jones 0-5
Jamila Ajanaku 3-5
Devin Mack 1-1

Double-Double For Dickson
Nicole Dickson set a school record last year with seven consecutive double-doubles. With the graduation of Jasmine Lee, she's drawn a little more attention on the glass and hasn't had quite the number of double-digit rebounding games she did last year, but she did finish with 20 points and 10 rebounds in the loss to UCF, Sunday, for her third double-double this season. She now has 13 for her career, tying her with Melissa Abraham and former Tiger and WNBA player LaTonya Johnson in the Memphis record book. That was the sixth double-double posted by a Tiger this season.

Memphis double-doubles
Nicole Dickson, 30 pts, 13 reb. at UT Arlington, 11/21/12
Nicole Dickson, 10 pts, 10 reb. UALR, 12/7/12
Nicole Dickson, 20 pts, 10 reb. UCF, 1/27/13
Asianna Fuqua-Bey, 14 pts, 11 reb., Southern Miss, 1/13/13
Ariel Hearn, 23 pts, 10 reb., Tennessee Tech, 12/31/12
Pa'Sonna Hope, 13 pts, 12 reb., at East Tennessee State, 11/30/12

Abdul-Qaadir Shooting out of Slump?

After shooting under 30 percent in back-to-back games, redshirt junior Bilqis Abdul-Qaadir may have shot her way out of a slump. She was 5-for-11 from the field in the loss to UCF (45.5 percent). The 13 points was her first double-digit scoring outing in three games. Over the last four games, she has knocked down 11 straight attempts at the free-throw line. She is just 15 assists shy of the 200-assist mark for her Tiger career heading into her 81st career game.

Dickson Looking for 1,500th Point; Passes Brittany Carter's Scoring Mark
Nicole Dickson scored her 1,000th career point against Rice last season in a Tigers' road win in Houston. She is knocking on the door of another benchmark in scoring, heading into Thursday night's game with 1,463 career points, 37 shy of the 1,500 point mark. Last year, Dickson was held to just six points in that game at Rice. The 1,463 points places Dickson 13th in the Tiger scoring charts, one ahead of former teammate Brittany Carter (2009-12) and just 10 behind Vera Webb's (1976-81) mark of 1,473 that currently is 12th all-time. Since that Rice game, Memphis has played 24 games, meaning Dickson has averaged 19.3 ppg since that six-point outing at Rice last season.

Dickson to the Top 10 in Rebounds
Everyone knows Dickson's reputation in the scoring column, where the senior is looking to break into the top 10 in school history in scoring. But she is already in the career top 10 in one category at Memphis -- rebounding. Her 696 rebounds ranks ninth in program history and she is 17 shy of tying Ashley Thornton's (2006-09) mark of 713 for eighth place.

Hearn Back on the Double-Digit Track

Just one game after having her 11-game double-digit scoring streak snapped with a tough shooting day in the loss at Tulane where she was 2-for-12 and finished with just seven points, freshman guard Ariel Hearn may have started her next streak with a 13 point outing in the win at UAB. She was 5-for-15 from the field. In the last two games, she has averaged 2.5 free throw attempts a game, For the season, she averages 5.4 attempts a game. Hearn has battled foul trouble in the first half of C-USA road games prior to the UAB game. She played just eight minutes in the first half of the loss at Tulane, and played just seven minutes in the first half of the loss at Houston to start the C-USA slate. Keeping the freshman on the floor is key to the Tigers' success, as she is the team's second-leading scorer with 14.6 ppg and leads the team with 77 assists.

30 is the New 20

Nicole Dickson scored 31 points in the loss at Tulane. She was 12-for-24 from the field in that game, and accounted for exactly half of Memphis' points (the Tigers lost 72-62). The 31-point game was the fifth game of the season that Dickson has gone over the 30 point mark. Dickson is one of three players in NCAA DI women's basketball that has scored 30 or more points in five or more games this season. She is currently tied with Georgetown senior Sugar Rodgers with five and trails only FIU junior Jerica Coley who has done so in seven games and who leads the country in scoring with 24.4 ppg. Dickson seems to have no problem finding points the road. Four of her five 30-point efforts have come on road trips.

Dickson's 30-Point Club
at Illinois State -- 36 points

at UT Arlington -- 30 points

at East Tennessee State -- 30 points

Wright State -- 34 points

at Tulane -- 31 points

Jones Ties Rebounding Mark

Sophomore center Ann Jones tied her season high with seven rebounds in the win at UAB. She had five offensive boards, to help the Tigers out-rebound UAB 42-34. The work on the glass resulted in more minutes for Jones, as she played 13 minutes, her first double-digit minute outing in six games.

Opponent Check-Up

Grambling State (4-17, 2-7 SWAC): Edged by Mississippi Valley State, 50-48; plays at Southern, Saturday.

Middle Tennessee (15-5, 10-1 Sun Belt): Got a career-high 28 points from Kortni Jones in a 79-57 win over Western Kentucky; plays at FIU, Thursday.

Illinois State (13-6, 5-2 Missouri Valley): Held on for a 66-65 win over Illinois State; plays at Missouri State, Sunday.   

Texas-Arlington (3-16, 1-8 WAC): Committed 30 turnovers in a 78-70 loss to San Jose State; hosts Louisiana Tech, Saturday.

Prairie View A&M (8-11, 5-4 SWAC): Defeated Alabama A&M, 68-59; plays at Texas Southern, Sunday. 

East Tennessee State (5-11, 3-6 A-Sun): Snapped a losing streak with a 74-57 win over Jacksonville; hosts Lipscomb, Saturday.

UALR (13-7, 6-6 Sun Belt): Won at North Texas, 52-48; hosts Louisiana Tech in a non-conference game, Wednesday.

Illinois (11-8, 4-3 Big 10): Picked up fourth Big 10 road win, 91-86, at Minnesota; hosts No. 24/25 Iowa, Thursday.

Alabama A&M (6-13, 5-4 SWAC): Lost at Prairie View A&M, 68-59; hosts Mississippi Valley State, Saturday.

Saint Louis (8-12, 2-3 Atlantic 10): Lost to visiting Charlotte, 71-54; plays at Xavier, Thursday.

Seton Hall (8-12, 3-4 BIG EAST): Held off Rutgers for a 45-42 victory; plays at Syracuse, Wednesday.

Missouri (13-8, 2-5 SEC): Lost at Texas Tech, 77-58; hosts Florida, Thursday.

Tennessee Tech (11-10, 5-3 Ohio Valley): Lost to visiting Murray State, 68-52; plays at Belmont, Saturday.

Wright State (9-10, 3-3 Horizon League): Lost to visiting Green Bay, 70-48; hosts Valparaiso, Thursday.

Houston (9-9, 3-2 C-USA): Lost to visiting UTEP, 65-54; plays at league-leading SMU, Thursday.

Southern Miss (11-8, 3-3 C-USA): Downed Rice, 76-57; plays at UAB, Thursday.

East Carolina (14-5, 4-2 C-USA): Won on the road at Tulane, 55-52; hosts Marshall, Thursday.

Tulane (14-4, 3-2 C-USA): Lost to visiting East Carolina, 55-52; plays at UCF, Thursday.

UAB (13-5, 4-1 C-USA): Won at Marshall, 61-45; hosts Southern Miss, Thursday.

UCF (7-12, 1-4 C-USA): Picked up first C-USA win of the season at Memphis, 70-65; hosts Tulane, Thursday.

Rice (9-10, 1-5 C-USA): Lost at Southern Miss, 76-57; plays at Memphis, Thursday.

Marshall (6-12, 0-5 C-USA): Lost to visiting UAB, 61-45; plays at East Carolina, Thursday.

SMU (14-4, 5-0 C-USA): Won sixth straight to remain atop C-USA with a 71-46 win at Tulsa; hosts Houston, Thursday.

UTEP (16-2, 4-1 C-USA): Won at Rice, 65-54; hosts Tulsa, Thursday.

Tulsa (7-12, 2-4 C-USA): Lost to league leader, SMU, 71-46; plays at UTEP, Thursday.

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