DePaul Travels to St. John's
DePaul (14-7, 4-4) at St. John's (6-12, 2-5)
Game Notes: DePaul | Opponent Information: St. John's
QUEENS, N.Y. - Tuesday night sees DePaul at St. John’s for the first of two BIG EAST road games this week. The road swing finishes on Saturday afternoon at Louisville. The two games are the second and third road contests in a four-game stretch. DePaul started the foursome with an 88-76 loss at #7/5 Connecticut on Jan. 24 before defeating Providence, 81-47, on Saturday at McGrath Arena. DePaul has won three of the last four with victories at Villanova and against Georgetown preceding the loss in Storrs to the Huskies.
The Blue Demons enter Tuesday’s game with a 14-7 overall record and 4-4 mark in BIG EAST play. DePaul dropped out of the AP top 25 two weeks ago ending a run of 47 straight appearances in the AP rankings. A fall from the ESPN/USA Today poll that same week also ended a run of 64 straight appearances in the coaches top 25. St. John’s is 6-12 overall, 2-5 in league action and not ranked in either top 25.
The series between the Blue Demons and Red Storm stands at 1-0 in favor of DePaul. The Blue Demons won the series opener in Chicago last year by a 70-67 margin.
Injury Report: Entering Saturday’s action, injuries have claimed a combined 79 games from DePaul’s current 12-player roster. Ciara Johnson has missed all 21 games with a knee injury. A knee injury also claimed 18 games for Rachael Carney. Carney saw her first action of the season against Georgetown, but played just 45 seconds before leaving the game with an arm injury. The senior dislocated her left elbow and has missed the last two contests.
Foot stress fractures have claimed playing time for Erin Carney, Erin Cattell and Felicia Chester. Chester has been unavailable for a total of 16 games this season. Cattell has missed the last nine games and Erin Carney was absent from a total of 13 contests. Erin Carney returned to the floor on Jan. 27 against Providence. The 79 missed games represent just over 31 percent of games played this season. In the seven-game stretch from Dec. 30-Jan. 24 with both Erin Carney and Erin Cattell missing, the Blue Demons were outrebounded by an average of 9.7 rebounds per game. With Carney’s return against Providence, DePaul grabbed 55 boards compared to just 30 for the Friars.
Noting the Blue Demons: Doug Bruno has used seven different starting lineups this season... only Jenna Rubino, Allie Quigley and Caprice Smith have started every game... in the 10 of the 14 wins, opponents have scored less than 70 points... since the start of the 2003-04 season (115 games), the Blue Demons have held 67 percent of their opponents to less than 70 points (77-of-115)... in that span, DePaul is 70-7 (.909) when holding opponents to less than 70 points... in 2006-07, the Blue Demons are 4-6 when allowing more than 70 points and 10-1 when holding the opposition to less than 70... at least four players have scored in double-figures in 10 games this season... in two games, at least three players have grabbed at least 10 rebounds (at UW-Green Bay and at Illinois-Chicago)... Allie Quigley (23 pts./10 reb.), Jenna Rubino (11 pts./15 reb.) and Caprice Smith (16 pts./11 reb.) each recorded a double-double on Dec. 17 at Illinois-Chicago... DePaul has knocked down at least 10 three-pointers in a game on four occasions... the 2005-06 squad combined for at least 10 three’s in three games... in the last two-plus seasons, the Blue Demons are 67-19 (.779)... in the last 34 home games against conference opponents, DePaul has posted 31 victories (.912 winning pct.)... DePaul is one of 19 programs that have reached postseason play in at least 15 of the last 18 seasons... they are also one of 14 teams to reach at least the second round in each of the last three NCAA Championships... joining the Blue Demons on the list of 14 second-round regulars are Baylor, Boston College, Connecticut, Duke, Georgia, LSU, Maryland, Michigan State, Ohio State, Purdue, Stanford, Tennessee and Vanderbilt... the 2005-06 season was the first year that DePaul didn’t score 100 points in a game since the 1999-00 season... over the last six-plus seasons (209 games), DePaul has scored at least 80 points in 74 games... the Blue Demons hold a 71-3 (.960) record in those games... in the 33rd season of play at DePaul, the women’s basketball program is 585-345.
Opponent 21 - St. John’s Red Storm: St. John’s enters Tuesday’s game at 6-12 overall and 2-5 in BIG EAST play. The Red Storm knocked off Villanova, 59-49, on Saturday to snap a two-game losing streak. Monique McLean leads three players in double-figures with 16.6 points and 6.2 rebounds per game. She is followed by Kia Wright with 13.2 points per contest and Tiina Sten with a 12.7 scoring average. Head coach Kim Barnes Arico is in her fourth season at St. John’s and holds a 66-68 record with the Red Storm.
The Series - DePaul leads 1-0: Tuesday’s game is just the second all-time meeting between the two programs. A year ago, DePaul held off the Red Storm for a 70-67 decision in Chicago. Caprice Smith led four players in double-figures with 17 points as the Blue Demons built a 12-point lead before St. John’s came back and took a two-point lead with three minutes left.
It Could Happen: Caprice Smith and Jenna Rubino need five rebounds each for 500 career... Erin Carney needs four points for 400 career and four rebounds for 450 in her career... a win would give the program its 24th season with at least 15 victories... a loss would give DePaul its first losing January since a 3-5 mark in January 2001... a loss would also mark the most defeats in a season since a 22-10 record in 2002-03.
All Alone: Closing in on the final chapter of her career, Jenna Rubino could potentially put her own mark on the DePaul record book. The senior guard enters the Providence game with 1,175 points, 495 rebounds, 290 assists and 158 career three-pointers. With 25 more points, 10 more assists and another five rebounds, Rubino becomes the first player in DePaul history with 1,200 points, 500 rebounds, 300 assists and 150 three-pointers.
Streaking: Dating back to last season and in some cases, the last couple of seasons, the Blue Demons have put together various streaks. Listed below are some current active streaks heading into Tuesday’s game at St. John’s:
Demon Doings: Notes following the 81-47 win against Providence on Saturday night:
Home Cookin’: In six-plus seasons, the DePaul Athletic Center, now named McGrath Arena, has proven itself as one of the toughest venues in the nation. The Blue Demons have posted an 81-11 record in the arena’s first 92 games. Now in the 33rd season, the Blue Demons have an all-time home court record of 345-95 (.784). Over 26 seasons at Alumni Hall, the women’s basketball program won over 75 percent of their games with a 242-80 all-time record. At the Allstate Arena, the women’s program has posted an all-time record of 22-4.
In 30-plus seasons of women’s basketball at DePaul University there have been 14 streaks of at least 10 straight home victories. The longest streak was the 33-game run that started on Dec. 19, 2003 with a 99-63 win over Alabama State and ended on Jan. 28, 2006 with an 84-75 defeat to No. 5/4 Connecticut. The victory over Houston on Feb. 11, 2005, broke the former record of 20 games from Feb. 4, 1978-Feb. 19, 1979.
Over the last four-plus years, the team is 64-4 at home with the two of the four losses to teams ranked in the top five. DePaul lost in overtime to No. 2 Tennessee on Dec. 17, 2003, before the Connecticut loss last season. Maybe more impressive is that the Blue Demons average margin of victory during that span is 23.1 points per game.
The Blue Demons have also posted 60 victories in the last 61 games over unranked opponents. West Virginia ended DePaul’s 58-game streak over unranked opponents with a 74-63 decision on Jan. 9. During the 58-game streak, there were 54 victories at McGrath Arena and four wins at the Allstate Arena. Prior to the West Virginia loss, Tulane handed DePaul their last home loss to an unranked team on Mar. 2, 2002, with a 88-83 decision in the quarterfinals of the C-USA Tournament.
New Name, Same Gym: In July, the DePaul Athletic Center was renamed the Sullivan Athletic Center while the gymnasium was christened McGrath Arena. The Sullivan Athletic Center was named after former DePaul athletics director Gene Sullivan. McGrath Arena takes its name from Frank McGrath, legendary DePaul assistant men’s basketball coach and administrator.
Bruno Picks Up USA Basketball Honor: Head coach Doug Bruno, along with Washington’s head men’s basketball coach Lorenzo Romar, were named co-recipients of the 2006 USA Basketball Developmental Coach of the Year award. The selections were made by the USA Basketball Executive Committee. USA Basketball will submit Bruno and Romar to the U.S. Olympic Committee as nominees for the 2006 USOC Developmental Coach of the Year award.
USA Basketball’s Development Coach of the Year award was established in 1996 to recognize a USA Basketball head coach who, during the year of the award, made significant impact on the success of individual athlete and team performance at the developmental level.
Bruno and Romar added their names to a list of award recipients that includes Kathy Delaney-Smith (2005) of Harvard University (Mass.); Jay Wright (2005) of Villanova University (Pa.); Kelvin Sampson (2004) currently at Indiana University; Jim Foster (2003) of The Ohio State University; Marsha Sharp (2002) formerly of Texas Tech University; Debbie Ryan (2001) of the University of Virginia; Geno Auriemma (2000) of the University of Connecticut; Oliver Purnell (1999) currently at Clemson University (S.C.); Jim Boeheim (1998) of Syracuse University (N.Y.); Rene Portland (1997) of Penn State University and Mike Montgomery (1996) formerly of Stanford University (Calif.).
Bruno guided the USA Basketball Women’s U18 National Team to a 4-0 record and the gold medal at the 2006 FIBA Americas U18 Championship for Women in Colorado Springs, Colo. The USA dominated the competition by an average margin of 40.2 ppg., and the team’s first-place finish qualified the USA for the 2007 FIBA U19 World Championship that will be held in Bratislava, Slovakia.
Quigley Named Player of the Week: Following a career-high 37 points against Rutgers, DePaul junior Allie Quigley was named the BIG EAST Player of the Week. The guard totaled 37 points with a career-high seven three-pointers to lead the Blue Demons to an 87-73 victory over No. 19/21 Rutgers. She went 11-of-20 from the field, 7-of-11 from behind the arc and 8-of-10 from the free throw line while adding five rebounds and two assists in 34 minutes played. The 37 points were just six shy of setting the school’s single-game record, was one of the top 13 single-game scoring performances in school history and the most points scored since Dec. 4, 2001 when Lenae Williams’ notched 39 points against Illinois. The seven three’s put Quigley in a tie for third on the single-game chart – just one shy of tying the school record.
Naismith Award Announces Preseason Top 50: Fifty of the country’s top collegiate women’s basketball players were named as pre-season candidates for the Naismith Trophy presented by Cingular Wireless, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced. DePaul’s Allie Quigley is second player in program history - joining Khara Smith - to be named to the Naismith Award list. She is also one of nine BIG EAST student-athletes on the preseason list. The Top 50 list was compiled by the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Board of Selectors, comprised of leading basketball journalists, coaches and administrators from around the country. The board based its pre-season criteria on player performances from last season and expectations for the 2006-07 season. In January, the Board of Selectors will narrow its pre-season list to the Top 30 players in the nation. Those players, and others who distinguish themselves throughout the season, will be eligible for the final ballot in March.
BIG EAST Preseason Picks: The league’s 16 coaches slated the Blue Demons at No. 3 in the BIG EAST preseason poll. DePaul was picked to finish fourth prior to the start of last season and took the No. 3 seed in the BIG EAST Championship with an 11-5 league record. Connecticut was selected as the favorite in 2006-07 with 11 first-place votes followed by Rutgers and DePaul. Junior guard Allie Quigley was one of 11 players named to the All-BIG EAST preseason team. USF’s Jessica Dickson was named the Preseason Player of the Year.
Sister Act: The DePaul roster features two sets of sisters in 2006-07. Sam Quigley joins the program this season for the roster’s second Quigley. Senior Rachael Carney and junior Erin Carney are in their second season together while Sam and junior Allie Quigley are playing together at the collegiate level for the first time. The two duos on the DePaul roster are two of 21 sets of sisters playing on a NCAA Division I team this season. DePaul is the only team in the country with two sets of sisters on the roster.
Against the State: DePaul has seen recent success against opponents from the state of Illinois. Over the last 38 games against Chicago State, Illinois, Illinois-Chicago, Illinois State, Loyola-Chicago, Northern Illinois, Northwestern and Southern Illinois, the Blue Demons have posted 37 victories. The Cougars represented the sixth and final in-state opponents this season. DePaul knocked off Illinois State to win the DePaul Invitational, topped Northern Illinois on Nov. 25, UIC on Dec. 17, Loyola-Chicago on Dec. 20 in Puerto Rico and Chicago State on Dec. 30.
DePaul has won 44 of the last 46 games against state opponents and currently holds a 23-game winning streak against Illinois schools. The last loss to a state program was on Dec. 4, 2002, as Illinois defeated the Blue Demons in Champaign by a 71-67 score.
Two Streaks Snapped: The 74-73 loss to TCU on Dec. 21 in the San Juan Shootout halted a pair of streaks for the DePaul women’s basketball program. It ended a winning streak of 10 games and also ended the Blue Demons’ run of seven consecutive regular-season tournament titles.
The 10-game winning streak is just one of six streaks in school history with at least 10 wins and the longest since a 14-game winning streak from Jan. 14-Mar. 4, 2005. A 17-game run from Jan. 11-Mar. 3, 1988 is the longest winning streak in program history.
Prior to the San Juan Shootout, DePaul totaled seven straight regular-season tournament titles starting with the 2002 Moran Realty Classic. A year ago, the Blue Demons claimed the DePaul Invitational and Hawaiian Airlines Rainbow Wahine Classic. DePaul also claimed the Moran Realty Classic (hosted by DePaul) in 2003 and 2004 and also earned championship hardware at Dartmouth’s Blue Sky Restaurant Classic in 2004. The most recent tourney championship was the 2006 DePaul Invitational with wins over Yale and Illinois State at McGrath Arena before TCU ended the tourney title run.
Sweet in the Classroom and on the Court: In addition to making the program’s first NCAA Sweet Sixteen appearance in 2005-06, the Blue Demons also accumulated the nation’s 11th-highest team grade-point average. DePaul’s team GPA of 3.361 placed them 11th in the country and was tops among the BIG EAST’s 16 women’s basketball programs. The No. 11 slot was the highest in program history, surpassing a No. 13 ranking for the 2000-01 season and No. 20 spot following the 1998-99 campaign. DePaul was the lone Sweet Sixteen program both on and off the court.
Four Going on Five: DePaul is looking to make the program’s fifth straight NCAA Championship appearance and fifth consecutive season with at least 20 victories. Last season saw the Blue Demons reach the NCAA Regional Semifinals for the first time in school history. In the 33rd season in school history, DePaul has totaled 11 NCAA Championship appearances and 15 campaigns of at least 20 wins. A 20-win season in 2006-07 will match the program’s longest streak of five consecutive years of 20 victories set from 1985-90.
San Juan Shootout Review: DePaul split a pair of games in San Juan by defeating Loyola-Chicago and falling to TCU. The Blue Demons jumped out to a 45-26 lead at halftime before finishing with a 97-70 win over the Ramblers. A night later, the TCU Horned Frogs ended DePaul’s 10-game win streak and run of seven straight regular-season tournament titles with a 74-73 decision over the Blue Demons. Jenna Rubino drilled a three-pointer with nine seconds left to give DePaul a one-point lead before Adrianne Ross hit two free throws with three seconds on the clock for the 74-73 final.
DePaul Invitational Recap: The Blue Demons knocked off Yale and Illinois State to claim the 2006 DePaul Invitational. On Friday night, DePaul opened up a 35-34 halftime lead with a 51-point second half against Yale. China Threatt came off the bench for a game-high 18 points to lead four players in double-figures as the Blue Demons defeated the Bulldogs, 86-60. The Blue Demons claimed the championship on the following evening with a 90-64 win over Illinois State. Allie Quigley dropped in 26 points along with eight assists as DePaul combined to shoot .529 from the field. Quigley was named the tourney MVP and was joined on the All-Tournament team by Caprice Smith and Threatt.
Taking Advantage From Beyond the Arc: Since the start of the 2003-04 season, the club has knocked down 829 trifectas compared to just 500 for the opposition. Over the last seven years, the team has totaled at least 200 three-pointers in each season. With a 0-for-8 showing against Houston on Feb. 11, 2005, DePaul’s streak of games with a three-pointer ended at 259 games. At the time, it was the nation’s seventh-longest active streak.
In 21 games this season, the Blue Demons have outscored their opponents by 144 points from three-point range (6.9 ppg). DePaul is 167-482 (.346) from behind the arc while opponents are a combined 119-390 (.305). The squad averages 8.0 three’s per game while the opposition makes 5.7 treys per contest. The trio of Missy Mitidiero, Allie Quigley and Jenna Rubino have combined for 116 three’s this season - just three shy of the 119 for all of DePaul’s opponents combined.
At Oklahoma in the State Farm Tip-Off Classic, the Blue Demons used the experimental three-point distance of 20’6”. DePaul went 8-for-28 (.286) as a team. The Blue Demons have played in two events in the last two seasons where the experimental distance was used. At the 2005 Rainbow Wahine Classic in Honolulu, the team posted a combined .306 percentage from behind the extended arc on 15-of-49 shooting in the three games.
1K Club: Allie Quigley and Jenna Rubino have become the newest members of DePaul’s 1,000-point club. Quigley passed the mark against Northern Illinois on Nov. 25 while Rubino eclipsed 1,000 points at Detroit on Dec. 15. Quigley enters the St. John’s game with 1,273 points for 13th all-time. Jenna Rubino stands at No. 18 with 1,175 points in 116 career games. The duo also ranks among the top five fastest players in DePaul history to reach 100 career three-pointers. Quigley hit her 100th career three-pointer in her 44th career game to rank third while Rubino knocked down her 100th three in the 80th game to rank as the fifth-fastest player to 100 trifectas. Following Quigley and Rubino, the next Blue Demon on the 1,000-point horizon is junior Caprice Smith with 828 career points.
TV Time: The BIG EAST Conference totals 82 combined appearances this season with every game of the league tournament televised for the first time. DePaul is scheduled to make eight regular-season television appearances starting at Oklahoma on ESPN2. The Blue Demons will also be seen on ESPNU, CSTV, the BIG EAST TV Network and The mtn. All games on CSTV and the BIG EAST TV Network will be streamed live at www.bigeast.tv. The online schedule includes DePaul games at Villanova and Louisville and the regular-season finale at McGrath Arena against Notre Dame.
Season-Opening Notes: Beginning the 33rd season of women’s basketball at DePaul University, the Blue Demons are 24-9 all-time in the first game. Prior to this year’s loss at Oklahoma, the Blue Demons won five straight season-openers from 2001-05. A year ago, the Blue Demons posted a 97-52 win over Harvard in the first round of the DePaul Invitational. The 45-point margin of victory was the second-highest season-opening advantage in school history. In DePaul’s first game in 1974, the Blue Demons posted a 62-17 win over Mundelein. Head coach Doug Bruno is 15-6 in the season’s first game at DePaul.
Looking Forward: The DePaul basketball program signed Taylor Pikes to a National Letter of Intent in the early signing period. Pikes joins the Blue Demons next season and is set to play her senior season at Martin Luther King High School in Chicago. Pikes, at 6’1”, can play both the guard and forward positions. She averaged 20 points, 12 rebounds and two assists as a junior at King while earning second team All-State honors. Pikes also picked up All-City recognition and was named by the Chicago Sun-Times as one of the city’s top six juniors last season. She was also recognized as one of Chicagoland’s top 50 players by the Chicago Tribune. Along with Pikes, the Blue Demons also have transfers Deirdre Naughton and Natasha Williams eligible next season. Both players are sitting out the 2006-07 campaign under NCAA transfer rules. Naughton was on the ACC All-Freshmen team after averaging 15.0 points and 5.5 rebounds per game at Wake Forest last season. Williams played her first two collegiate seasons at Minnesota and averaged 8.2 points and 3.8 boards per contest as a sophomore in 2005-06.