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Women's Basketballs Hosts Villanova on Saturday



CHICAGO - The DePaul women's basketball team returns to McGrath Arena this Saturday and welcomes BIG EAST Conference rival Villanova to Lincoln Park.  Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. while DePaul will provide live audio and video on www.DePaulBlueDemons.com.  Bryan Dolgan will call the action live from courtside with his pregame show beginning at 6:45 p.m.

DePaul and Villanova meet for the sixth time and hold a 4-1 series advantage.  DePaul's lone series loss came at Villanova last season on Valentine's Day while the Blue Demons are 3-0 over the Wildcats in Lincoln Park.

DePaul (15-8, 4-5 BIG EAST) has won two of its last three games, but dropped a disappointing 70-66 game at Providence on Wednesday.  The Blue Demons are led by Sam Quigley's 14.3 points per game, while Katherine Harry ranks third in BIG EAST games with 9.9 rebounds. 

Villanova (11-10, 0-8 BIG EAST) has lost eight of its last nine games, with its lone win coming to George Washington in a nonconference tilt on Jan. 21. The Wildcats are led by Laura Sweeny's 11.5 points and 6.0 rebounds per game.

Saturday's game is also DePaul's annual Pink Zone Game in conjunction with the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA).  Pink Zone is a global initiative and unified effort from the nation of coaches to assist in raising breast cancer awareness on the court, across campuses, in communities and beyond. 

During the game the Blue Demons will help raise money for the  Kay Yow/WBCA Cancer Fund by selling raffle tickets throughout the game.  The raffle prizes include officially licensed Pink Zone gear, official team gear, and a chance to meet Coach Bruno and get an autographed game-used DePaul basketball, amongst many other "pink" prizes. 

DePaul has reached out to several local breast cancer support groups and have invited survivors and their families to attend Saturday's game against Villanova.  Support group members from Chicago's Sisters Network, Imerman's Angels and Gilda's Club all plan to attend the event.

Following Saturday's game, the Blue Demons welcome No. 1 Connecticut on Feb. 10. DePaul's game with UConn is the first of four consecutive TV games for the Blue Demons; the Connecticut game can be seen locally on Lakeshore Public Televisions while the Valentine's Day meeting at Notre Dame will air on ESPN2.  DePaul game at Marquette (Feb. 20) will be featured on BIG EAST TV while it home game with Pittsburgh (Feb. 23) can be seen on CBSC.

Noting the Blue Demons: DePaul is 648-381 (.630) all-time... the 2009-10 campaign is the 36th season of women's basketball at DePaul University... DePaul has made at least 200 3-pointers in a season the last 10 seasons... since the start of the 2003-04 season (214 games), the Blue Demons have held 65.0 percent of their opponents to less than 70 points (139-of-214)... in that span, DePaul is 118-21 (.849) when holding opponents to less than 70 points... DePaul has held 17 of its 23 opponents to less than 70 points this season... in the last five-plus seasons (178 games), the Blue Demons are 123-55 (.691)... in the last 57 home games against conference opponents, DePaul has posted 47 victories... over the last nine-plus seasons (306 games), DePaul has scored at least 80 points in 106 games... the Blue Demons hold a 101-5 (.953) record in those games... in the same span, DePaul is 42-1, including 40 straight wins, when scoring at least 90 points.

It could happen: The game is No. 1029 in DePaul women's basketball history... Quigley could start her 60th consecutive game, the longest active streak on the team... with one assist, Quigley has dished out an assist in her last 53 games... Felicia Chester needs nine rebounds to reach 450 career boards... Keisha Hampton needs six rebounds to reach the 300 career mark... Chester needs two blocks to tie for 11th in DePaul's single-season block record... four players had 36 in a single season.

Recapping Providence:  DPU trailed 36-30 at halftime but opened the second half on a 7-0 run... After  several ties and lead changes, DePaul held its last lead 45-44 with 13:15 remaining... The Friars led by as many as eight down the stretch... DePaul came within two at 68-66, but PC put the game out of reach on two free throws with five seconds remaining... DePaul held a 48-41 rebound advantage... outrebounded Providence 16-9 on the offensive end...DePaul shot a season-low .571 (12-for-21) from the free throw line... previous low was .583 (7-for-12) in its loss to St. John's on Jan. 16... DePaul forced just 10 Providence turnovers... the fewest by an opponent this season... Katherine Harry had 12 rebounds... the third consecutive game the freshman reached double-digit rebounds... Harry has had double-digits rebounds in eight of her last 13 games... Felicia Chester scored a season-high 17 points... previous season-high was 16 points at Northern Illinois... Sam Quigley started her 59th consecutive game...Quigley has registered an assist in her last 52 games... led DePaul with four assists... Quigley played all 40 minutes... fifth consecutive game Quigley played all available minutes... 10th time this season and 13th career game that Quigley has played every available minute... Quigley paced DePaul with 17 points... led DePaul in scoring for the 11th time this season... reached double-figures in 11 of her last 12 games...Providence snapped a three-game losing streak... improves to 9-2 on its home floor... Chelsea Marandola led Providence with 22 points... was 4-for-8 from behind the arc... Providence shot a season-low .444 (4-for-9) from the free throw line... Providence won its first BIG EAST regular season meeting with DePaul... snapped DePaul's five-game series winning streak... first series win for Providence since the 1989 season when the team met at the Lady Cardinal Classic in Stanford... DePaul is now leads the all-time series 5-3.

Looking Ahead: Blue Demons host No. 1 Connecticut on Feb. 10... DePaul's game with UConn is the first of four consecutive TV games for the Blue Demons... Connecticut (LPTV), at Notre Dame (ESPN2), at Marquette (BIG EAST TV) and vs. Pittsburgh (CBSC) will all be brodcast either regionally or Nationally.

Against Ranked Opponents this season:  DePaul has faced four nationally ranked opponents this season... 1-3 against ranked opponents this season...  all four of those contests have been on the road or on a neutral court... played road games at then-No. 2 Stanford (Dec. 13), then-No. 22/17 West Virginia (Jan. 9) and at then-No. 19/18 Georgetown (Jan. 23)... won against then-No. 10/6 Florida State (Dec. 20) at the Duel in the Desert Tournament in Las Vegas... seven of DePaul's opponents are ranked in the top-25 this season.

Charity Stripe Success: DePaul is ranked the 19th country and is second in the BIG EAST with a .752 (282-for-375) free throw percentage... Sam Quigley ranks 73rd in the nation and leads the Blue Demons with a .824 (89-for-108) free throw percentage... Quigley's free throw percentage ranks sixth in the BIG EAST... DePaul started the season with a 17-for-18 (.944) effort against Central Michigan... against Rutgers was 9-for-10 with Keisha Hampton hitting 8-of-8 for a season-best... shot under .750 in just nine games this season... nine Blue Demons have recorded a 1.000 free throw percentage (min. 2 attempts) 32 times this season... Quigley has seven perfect efforts while Felicia Chester and Hampton each have six perfect games.

Nice Pass:  Sam Quigley ranks No. 105 in the country in assist to turnover ratio... the junior leads the Blue Demons with 113 assists while she has turned over the ball just 78 times for a 1.45 assist to turnover ratio... Quigley has led the Blue Demons in assists 17 times... has a career-best seven assists four times this season... Quigley ranks 43rd in the country with 4.9 assists per game...  ranks second in league behind West Virginia's Sarah Miles (6.8 apg)... Quigley has had at least one assist in her last 52 games.

All the Minutes:  Sam Quigley leads the BIG EAST by averaging 38.0 minutes per game... Quigley has played 10 complete games this season and 13 in her career... the junior averages a league best 40.3 minutes in BIG EAST games this season... in her last 10 games, Quigley has sat just seven minutes and played all available minutes at Rutgers, West Virginia, Seton Hall, Georgetown, Cincinnati, Marquette and at Providence... played five consecutive 40 minute games.

Martin Moments:  Martin has started the last 18 games for the Blue Demons... third on the team with 10.5 points per game... second the team with 30, 3-pointers... reached double-digits in eight of her last 12 games and in 13 of her last 19... career-high 19 points at Green Bay... grabbed a team-best rebounds at Northern Illinois... entered the starting lineup against Northern Illinois after Deirdre Naughton suffered a season-ending knee injury.

Hanging on the freshman Harry:  Freshman forward Katherine Harry entered the starting lineup against Arkansas on Dec. 19... named to the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll on Feb. 2... career-high with 18 boards in DePaul's wins over UNLV (Dec. 21), Cornell (Nov. 20) and Cincinnati (Jan. 27)... has nine double-figure rebound, seven double-digit scoring performances and five double-doubles this season... recorded double-figure rebounds in her last three games... ranks third in BIG EAST only games (behind Monique Reid -Louisville and Jessica Lawson - USF both average 10.0 rpg ) with 9.9 rebounds per game... second on the team with 26 blocks

Block Party:  DePaul averages 4.1 blocks per game and has swatted 94 shots this season... ranks second in the BIG EAST with 5.0 blocks in league games...  only team in the BIG EAST to have three players ranked in the top 15 for blocks per game... Felicia Chester leads the trio with 34 blocks (1.5 bpg), followed by Katherine Harry with 26 (1.1 bpg) and Keisha Hampton (1.0 bpg)... DePaul had a season-high eight blocks against Marquette on Jan. 31... had six or more blocks against five times this season.

Coach Doug Bruno Court: Beginning in the 2010-11 season, the Blue Demons will play their home games at McGrath Arena on Coach Doug Bruno Court.  DePaul's Director of Athletics, Jean Lenti Ponsetto made the announcement on Nov. 16.  The 2010-11 season will also mark Coach Bruno's 25th season at DePaul while he is also on track to record his 500th career win that season. 

Injury Report - Naughton, Threatt & Pierson:  Deirdre Naughton will miss the remainder of the 2009-10 season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in her right knee.  Naughton, who entered the Northwestern game averaging 17.5 points per game this season, injured her knee in the first half of No. 15/21 DePaul's 59-55 loss to the Wildcats on Nov. 24. "Deirdre Naughton has been the heart and soul of this basketball team," Blue Demons head coach Doug Bruno said. "To lose her for the season is a devastating blow to this team. Every team in the nation at one time or another has been forced to deal with the adversity of injuries. Losing Deirdre Naughton will test the metal of this year's ballclub and we do expect every member of our team to step up in her absence." Naughton, was named to the preseason Wade Watch and was a Naismith Trophy and John R. Wooden candidate prior to the 2009-10 season. A second team All-BIG EAST Conference selection and Associated Press All-American honorable mention as a junior, Naughton has scored 1,470 points in her career. She played her freshman season at Wake Forest in 2005-06 before transferring to DePaul.

China Threatt - last season's BIG EAST Sixth Man of the Year - and Rachel Pierson have been sidelined by injuries.  Threatt suffered a career-ending knee injury while Pierson is out with a back injury.

LPTV: DePaul has partnered with LPTV and will play four games on that station.  LPTV is one of Chicago's Public television stations and broadcasted DePaul's win over San Diego and UIC.  The Blue Demons games with BIG EAST Conference foes, Connecticut and West Virginia will also be carried on LPTV.  DePaul is 2-1 when playing on LPTV. 

Taking Advantage from Beyond the Arc: Since the start of the 2005-06 season (153 games), the club has knocked down 1035 trifectas compared to just 770 for the opposition... with three 3-pointers against San Diego State at the NCAA Championship in San Diego, the team clinched the 10th straight year with at least 200 three-pointers... a 0-for-8 showing against Houston on Feb. 11, 2005, ended DePaul's streak with a three-pointer at 259 games... at the time, it was the nation's seventh-longest active streak... more recently, the Blue Demons 0-14 showing at Northern Illinois ended a 144 game streak with a 3-pointer, while they were 0-11 against Arkansas... including the Houston, Northern Illinois and Arkansas games, the Blue Demons have tallied a three-pointer in 419 of the last 422 games.

Home Cookin': Through nine-plus seasons, McGrath Arena - formerly known as the DePaul Athletic Center - has proven itself as one of the toughest venues in the nation. The Blue Demons have posted a 115-20 (.852) record in the arena's 135 games. DePaul's .848 winning percentage entering the 2009-10 season ranks ninth among all active arenas and 11th all-time.

Beginning its 36th season of women's basketball at DePaul University, the Blue Demons have an all-time home court record of 379-104 (.785). Over 26 seasons at Alumni Hall, the women's basketball program won over 75 percent of its 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.

There have been 15 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 #5/4 Connecticut. The Blue Demons' 11-game winning streak dating back to the 2006-07 season ended on Jan. 2, 2008 with the 102-68 loss to #3/3 Tennessee.

Over the last seven-plus years at McGrath Arena, the team is 94-13 at home with four losses to teams ranked in the top five. DePaul lost in overtime to #2/2 Tennessee on Dec. 17, 2003, before the Connecticut loss in Jan. 2006. Tennessee, ranked third in both polls, served DePaul its fifth defeat before the 77-76 loss to #1/1 Connecticut on Mar. 1, 2008. Maybe more impressive is that the Blue Demons' average margin of victory during that span that 20.7 points per game.

The Blue Demons have also posted 92 victories in the last 95 games over unranked opponents. West Virginia ended DePaul's 58-game streak over unranked opponents with a 74-63 decision on Jan. 9, 2007 before Pittsburgh and Louisville handed the Blue Demons defeats in 2007-08. During the 58-game streak, there were 54 victories at McGrath Arena and four wins at the Allstate Arena.

Regular Season Tournament History: DePaul is 71-26 all-time in regular season tournaments dating back to 1980-81 season... DePaul has played in 44 regular season tournaments and won 24...  finished in second eight times... earlier this season won the Maggie Dixon Classic.

Duel in the Desert Recap: DePaul won its second tournament of the 2009-10 season with wins over Arkansas, No. 10/6 Florida State and host UNLV...  Sam Quigley was named the tournament's MVP while Anna Martin earned all-tournament honors... the Blue Demons opened the tournament with a slim 46-45 victory over Arkansas... Maureen Mulchrone came off the bench to lead the Blue Demons with 11 points while Katherine Harry had 10 rebounds...  DePaul defeated No. 10/6 Florida State 75-60 to reach the Championship game... DePaul trailed for just the 4:32 before taking the lead for good... led 37-29 at the half and led by as many at 19... overpowered UNLV 82-48 for the Championship... Harry led the floor with 18 rebounds and Martin had 18 points.

Maggie Dixon Recap: DePaul won the inaugural Maggie Dixon Classic in the Midwest with wins over Cornell and San Diego.  Formally known as the DePaul Invitational, the Maggie Dixon Classic honors former Blue Demon assistant coach Maggie Dixon, who died on April 6, 2006 of an arrhythmia. Dixon's tragic death came three weeks after her first season as the head coach at Army which saw the Black Knights win the Patriot League Championship and make the program's first trip to the NCAA Championship.  The Classic is the third tournament to be named after the former Blue Demon assistant and Army head coach.  Jamie Dixon, the head coach at Pittsburgh hosts a tournament at Madison Square Garden, while San Diego, Dixon's alma mater also hosts a tournament in Dixon's name.

The Blue Demons defeated Cornell, 89-50 while the biggest story of the night was freshman Katherine Harry's 18 rebounds.  Harry's 18 boards were the most by a Blue Demon player since Erin Carney grabbed 19 at Oklahoma.  Deirdre Naughton scored 24 as the Blue Demons claimed the Championship with an 84-64 win over San Diego.  Naughton earned MVP honors while Felicia Chester and Keisha Hampton were named to the All-Tournament team.

Marching Along: DePaul made its seventh consecutive and the program's 14th NCAA Championship appearance in 2009...  Blue Demons were one of seven BIG EAST programs in the field of 64... the conference led all leagues along with the Big 12 with teams earning bids... the program is 7-14 (.333) all-time in NCAA Championship play... DePaul is one of 14 teams to appear in each of the last seven tournaments... joining the Blue Demons on the list of 14 teams with seven straight NCAA's are Connecticut, Duke, Georgia, LSU, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Purdue, Rutgers, Stanford, Tennessee and Vanderbilt... the seven straight appearances are a program record for consecutive NCAA's... DePaul earned four consecutive NCAA berths from 1990-93 followed by a three-year run from 1995-97... the program is 4-8 entering in its last seven tournament appearances, including a 2006 NCAA Regional Semifinal appearance in San Antonio, Texas.

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 the 2009-10 season:
- 56 straight victories over unranked non-conference opponents at home
- 10 seasons in-a-row with at least 200 three-pointers
- Seven consecutive NCAA Championship appearances