Blue Demons Host Northwestern on Sunday
CHICAGO - DePaul returns to McGrath Arena for the first of two home games in the span of five days. The Blue Demons take on the Northwestern Wildcats in a Sunday afternoon game in Lincoln Park. Northern Illinois visits McGrath Arena on Thursday, Dec. 18 to complete the brief two-game homestand.
A stretch of six games with five opponents from the state of Illinois started Dec. 5 with an 85-42 win over Southern Illinois. DePaul enters the Northwestern game with a 33-game winning streak against state schools. The Blue Demons also face Northern Illinois (Dec. 18) and UIC (Dec. 22) with the lone non-Illinois game at Missouri State. The Blue Demons topped the Lady Bears, 72-57, in Springfield on Wednesday night.
Following Sunday’s action, DePaul hosts Northern Illinois on Thursday before traveling to UIC on Monday, Dec. 22.
Noting the Blue Demons: DePaul is 617-366 (.628) all-time... the 2008-09 campaign is the 35th season of women’s basketball at DePaul University... the Blue Demons have put together at least one 10-game winning streak in four of the last five campaigns... with a record-setting 252 three-pointers in 2007-08, DePaul has made at least 200 three’s in a season in nine straight years... since the start of the 2003-04 season (169 games), the Blue Demons have held 63.3 percent of their opponents to less than 70 points (107-of-169)... in that span, DePaul is 93-14 (.869) when holding opponents to less than 70 points... DePaul has held eight of its 10 opponents to less than 70 this season... in the last three-plus seasons, the Blue Demons are 74-34 (.685)... in the last 45 home games against conference opponents, DePaul has posted 37 victories... over the last eight-plus seasons (262 games), DePaul has scored at least 80 points in 97 games... the Blue Demons hold a 92-5 (.948) record in those games... in the same span, DePaul is 41-1, including 39 straight wins, when scoring at least 90 points... with two games in each of its three BIG EAST Tournaments, DePaul is just one of three teams to play in multiple conference tourney games... Connecticut and Pittsburgh have also played at least two games in each of the last three BIG EAST Championships... the Blue Demons are one of 17 programs nationally with six straight NCAA Championship appearances.
Opponent 11 - Northwestern Wildcats: Northwestern stands at 2-6 following a 78-75 overtime loss at Clemson on Dec. 4... Sunday’s game isthe first for the Wildcats following a break for exams... Northwestern has dropped three straight after a 71-54 win over Western Illinois on Nov. 29... Amy Jaeschke leads the team with 17.8 points and 11.4 rebounds per game... she is followed by Kristin Cartwright with 11.8 points per game and Meshia Reed’s 10.6 scoring average... head coach Joe McKeown is in his first season at Northwestern.
The Series - Northwestern leads 13-12: Sunday is the 26th meeting between the two programs... the Wildcats hold a 13-12 advantage, but DePaul has won the last nine meetings... a year ago, DePaul posted a 102-64 win in Evanston... Deirdre Naughton scored 17 points while Natasha Williams added 12 and China Threatt scored 10... during the nine-game winning streak, the Blue Demons average margin of victory is 28.1 points per game.
Career Statistics vs. Northwestern
Against the Big Ten Conference: DePaul is 34-49 (.410) all-time against the current line-up of Big Ten programs... the Blue Demons have claimed wins in nine of the last 10 games against Big Ten foes.
Against the State: DePaul has seen recent success against opponents from the state of Illinois. Over the last 48 games against Chicago State, Illinois, Illinois-Chicago, Illinois State, Loyola-Chicago, Northern Illinois, Northwestern and Southern Illinois, the Blue Demons have posted 47 victories. The 2007-08 schedule saw DePaul knock off Southern Illinois, Illinois State, Illinois-Chicago, Loyola-Chicago, Chicago State, Northern Illinois and Northwestern. The 2008-09 campaign has collected wins over Illinois State, Southern Illinois and Loyola-Chicago.
DePaul has won 54 of the last 56 games against state opponents and currently holds a 33-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. During the 56-game stretch, both defeats have occurred at Illinois with the last home loss to an Illinois program on Nov. 20, 1998, against Northwestern. The Wildcats defeated the Blue Demons at Alumni Hall by a score of 62-61.
It Could Happen: A win would even the series with Northwestern at 13-13... a loss would snap a nine-game winning streak against Northwestern and end DePaul’s 33-game winning streak against opponents from Illinois.
Demon Doings: Notes following the 72-57 win at Missouri State on Dec. 10:
BIG EAST Beast: Through nearly five weeks of play, the 16 teams in the BIG EAST Conference hold an impressive .792 (103-27) winning percentage in non-conference play. This week’s ESPN/USA Today Coaches’ poll features five BIG EAST schools in the top 20 and the AP top 25 has five teams from league schools among the top 16. Led by No. 1/1 Connecticut, Notre Dame stands No. 8 in the AP poll and in the No. 8 position in the ESPN/USA Today poll. Louisville sits at No. 12 in the AP rankings and at No. 13 in ESPN/USA Today, while Rutgers is No. 14 in the AP poll and No. 13 in the ESPN/USA Today poll. Pittsburgh jumped into the AP poll last week and is at No. 16 in the AP poll and No. 20 in coaches’ poll.
Home Cookin’: Through eight-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 97-17 (.851) record in the arena’s 114 games. DePaul’s .846 winning percentage to enter the season ranked ninth among all active arenas and 11th all-time.
Now in the 35th season of women’s basketball at DePaul University, the Blue Demons have an all-time home court record of 361-101 (.781). 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.
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 with the 102-68 loss to #3/3 Tennessee.
Over the last six-plus years, the team is 80-10 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 last season on Jan. 2 before the 77-76 loss to #1/1 Connecticut on Mar. 1. 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 75 victories in the last 78 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 last season. During the 58-game streak, there were 54 victories at McGrath Arena and four wins at the Allstate Arena.
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 Sunday’s game against Northwestern:
Taking Advantage from Beyond the Arc: Since the start of the 2005-06 season, the club has knocked down 774 trifectas compared to just 534 for the opposition. With 10 three-pointers at Rutgers on Feb. 27 last season, the team clinched the ninth straight year with at least 200 three-pointers. An 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. Including the Houston game, the Blue Demons have tallied a three-pointer in 375 of the last 376 games. DePaul enters Sunday’s game against Northwestern with a streak of 116 consecutive games with a three-pointer.
Through 10 games in the 2008-09 campaign, the Blue Demons have totaled 50 three’s while the opposition has also combined for 50 three-pointers. DePaul’s 5.0 three’s per game is below the 7.9 three-point field goal average last season when the Blue Demons tallied a school-record 252 three’s in 32 games.
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