Feb. 23, 2014
THE OPENING TIP - QUICK NOTES
The University of Minnesota women's basketball team travels to East Lansing, Mich., Monday to take on No. 24 Michigan State at 6:00 p.m. CT.
The contest will be broadcast live on BTN with Eric Collins and Debbie Antonelli on the call, while fans can listen to the Gopher radio team of Corbu Stathes and Lynnette Sjoquist live on KBEM Jazz 88.5 FM.
Live stats can be found on Gophersports.com and live updates will be available on twitter at @GophersWBB.
Minnesota enters Monday's contest with a 17-10 overall record and a 6-7 Big Ten record following its 63-42 loss to No. 21/21 Purdue on Feb. 20. Its 6-7 record ranks seventh in league standings.
The Spartans are in a tie for second in conference standings with a 10-3 Big Ten record and a 18-8 record on the season. They enter the game with a four-game winning streak.
Minnesota is set to play two of its last three regular-season contests in the friendly confines of Williams Arena, where the team is 11-4 this season and outscoring its opponents by an average of 9.9 points per game.
The Gopher rank in at No. 30 in the latest RPI report, which was released by the NCAA on Feb. 17, a jump of 11 spots from the previous week when they ranked No. 41.
Rachel Banham looks to become the first Gopher since Carol Ann Shudlick in 1993 to lead the Big Ten in scoring in league only contests, carrying an average of 22.7 points per game into Monday's game. It would be the highest season average since Penn State's Kelly Mazzante averaged 25.1 points per game in 2002.
Banham leads the Big Ten this season with 16 games of 20 or more points and four games of 30 or more points.
With 70 three-pointers this sesason, Banham needs just five three-point field goals to break the single-season record of 74 set by Katie Ohm during the 2008-09 season.
Banham remains on watch lists for all three national player of the year awards, as she has been named to the Wooden Award Midseason Top 20, the Naismith Trophy Midseason Top 30 and the Wade Award Watch List.
Amanda Zahui B. was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Week for a league-best sixth time this season on Feb. 17 after averaging 16.5 points and 13.5 rebounds per game against Wisconsin and Northwestern.
Zahui B. leads the league with 12 double-doubles this season, while her five in league play tie for fourth.
Minnesota ranks in the top-55 nationally in seven catergories heading into Monday's game, paced by a No. 4 ranking in three-point field goal percentage (.399). It trails only Duke, Notre Dame and Vanderbilt.
Senior Sari Noga scored a team-high 15 points in Minnesota's last outing against the Boilermakers.
Head coach Pam Borton secured her 300th career victory in the Gophers' win at Northwestern on Feb. 15.
Freshmen Take on Bigger Role as February Captains
The youngest Golden Gophers have embraced leadership expectations during conference play.
Gophers Fall 85-69 at Michigan State
Minnesota outrebounded the Spartans but could not overcome the home team's hot shooting in Thursday night's game.
Game Preview: Michigan State
The Golden Gophers and Spartans tip off at 6 p.m. CT in East Lansing on Thursday night.