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Arizona Women Host No. 20/22 Maryland Saturday
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 01/29/2005
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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COMING UP: The Arizona women’s basketball team (15-5) plays a 4 p.m. game against No. 20/22 Maryland (13-5) this Saturday, Jan. 29. The game will be broadcast live on FSN to a national audience. It can also be heard live on KJLL 1330 AM in Tucson. Live audio and stats of this and every home game are available at www.arizonaathletics.com. Video of the game will be available on the website on a delayed basis.

ArizonaAthletics.com Coverage: Subscribers to All-Access, Arizona's premium audio/video service, can listen to the radio broadcast live and watch a delayed video webcast of the McKale Center production with Paul Johnson callling the action after 8 p.m. on Saturday. Free, real-time statistics are also available.

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A QUICK LOOK AT THE WILDCATS: In front of 4,710 fans, the Wildcats defeated instate rival Arizona State 56-49 Wednesday night. Arizona, which overcame a four-point halftime deficit, shot 38 percent from the field, 25 percent from beyond the arc and 74 percent from the field on the game. Meanwhile, Arizona State connected on 30 percent from the field, 28 percent from downtown and 86 percent from the charity stripe. The Wildcats out-rebounded the Sun Devils 37 to 34 and forced 24 ASU turnovers. Freshman Jessica Arnold led all players with 14 points, while senior Dee-Dee Wheeler and junior Shawntinice Polk added 11 apiece. Wheeler also added five assists and four steals, while Polk pulled down six rebounds and blocked four shots. Senior Danielle Adefeso was just shy of a double-double as she finished with nine points and a game-high 10 rebounds.

On the season, the Wildcats are led by Wheeler, who averages 18.2 points, 5.0 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 2.9 steals per game. Polk adds 13.2 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game. As a team, Arizona is out-shooting its opponents 45 percent to 37 percent and out-rebounding them 38.0 to 36.2.

SCOUTING THE OPPOSITION: Maryland nearly upset No. 1/4 Duke, falling 60-57 Thursday night on the road. Neither team made a three-pointer, ending a streak of 241-consecutive games for the Blue Devils and 68 for the Terps. Maryland shot 40 percent from the field, compared to the 38 percent of Duke, but was out-rebounded 39 to 34. Shay Doron led the Terps with 16 points, followed by Crystal Langhorne with 14 and Jade Perry with 10. Langhorne also pulled down a team-high nine boards. Anesia Smith dished out seven assists in the loss.

On the season, the Terrapins have four players that average 10 or more points, led by Doron, who averages 13.5 points, 3.9 assists and 2.6 steals per game. Langhorne adds 16.0 points and 9.1 rebounds per game, while Kalika France averages 11.3 points per game. Smith dishes out a team-high 6.8 assists per game. As a team, Maryland is shooting 46 percent from the field, compared to the 39 percent of its opponents. The Terrapins are outscoring their opponents 74.8 to 62.7 and are out-rebounding them 44.1 to 34.3.

SERIES SHORTS: This is the first-ever meeting between Arizona and the Terrapins.

UPCOMING PROMOTIONS: State Farm is sponsoring UA Mentoring Day for Saturday’s game against Maryland. Arizona assistant coach Shimmy Gray and players will host a pre-game mentoring session for aspiring female youth. In addition, the first 600 UA students will receive free pizza served by Head Coach Joan Bonvicini and the Arizona cheerleaders. Pizza will be served at 3 p.m. by the north basket. Arizona students also receive free admission to the game with a valid CatCard.

RANKING IN THE PAC-10: As a team, Arizona leads the Pac-10 in blocks (3.9), ranks second in field goal percentage (.448) and field goal percentage defense (.373), third in scoring (71.2), scoring margin (8.3) and three-point field goal percentage defense (.296), fourth in scoring defense (62.9), rebounding margin (1.8), assists (15.0), defensive rebounds (23.8) and assist/turnover ratio (0.8), and fifth in rebounding defense (36.2).

Individually, Dee-Dee Wheeler ranks second in scoring (18.2) and assist/turnover ratio (1.9), third in assists (4.9) and steals (2.9), fifth in minutes played (33.0), sixth in three-point field goals made (1.6), and 17th in rebounding (5.0). Shawntinice Polk leads the league in blocked shots (2.1), ranks third in field goal percentage (.601), rebounding (8.2) and defensive rebounds (5.9), and ninth in scoring (13.2) and offensive rebounds (2.3). Natalie Jones ranks sixth in free throw percentage (.786) and 16th in rebounding (5.1). Jessica Arnold ranks sixth in three-point field goal percentage (.396).

In Pac-10 games only, Wheeler leads the league in scoring (19.1), ranks third in assists (4.8), three-point field goals made (1.9) and minutes played (34.2), tied for third in steals (2.7), fourth in assist/turnover ratio (1.5), sixth in three-point field goal percentage (.404), and 19th in rebounding (5.1). Polk ranks third in field goal percentage (.579), rebounding (7.6) and defensive rebounds (5.4), fifth in blocks (1.3) and 10th in scoring (12.5). Jones is ninth in free throw percentage (.763) and 17th in rebounding (5.2), while Danielle Adefeso is seventh in field goal percentage (.519.

RANKING NATIONALLY: As a team, Arizona ranks 28th nationally in field goal percentage, 29th in scoring, 40th in won-lost percentage 59th in scoring margin and 67th in assists.

Individually, senior Dee-Dee Wheeler ranks 34th in points per game and 44th in steals per game. Junior Shawntinice Polk ranks 12th in field goal percentage.

TEACHER VS. STUDENT: When the two teams tip off Saturday afternoon, it will be a match-up of former player against former coach. Maryland Head Coach Brenda Frese returns to her alma mater for the first time as a head coach. Frese played at Arizona from 1989-92. In her final season, she played for the then first-year coach at Arizona, Joan Bonvicini.

THE GLASS IS THE ANSWER: It seems the most telling statistic for the Arizona women’s basketball team this season is rebounding. The Wildcats are 12-0 when out-rebounding their opponents. Arizona is just 2-4 when being out-rebounded and 1-1 when pulling down the same number of boards as its opponents this season.

POLK MOVES INTO FOURTH IN CAREER SCORING: With her first basket at the 18:54 mark of the game Wednesday against Arizona State, junior center Shawntinice Polk moved into fourth-place all-time in scoring at Arizona. She now has 1,325 career points.

ADEFESO DOMINATING THE BOARDS: In Wednesday’s win over Arizona State, Danielle Adefeso pulled down a game-high 10 rebounds. It was just the second time in her career that the senior has grabbed double-digit boards. The other time she had 10 rebounds was Dec. 6, 2003, against American.

ARNOLD MAKES STARTS COUNT: Since returning to the starting lineup on Jan. 20, freshman guard Jessica Arnold is averaging 15.0 points per game. Wearing a shoulder brace the makes shooting awkward, Arnold scored 10 points on 4-of-6 shooting against Oregon last Thursday. She followed that up with her best game ever as a Wildcat against Oregon State last Saturday, when was 5-of-7 from the field, 3-of-4 from downtown and a career-high 8-of-8 from the charity stripe for a career-high 21 points. In Wednesday’s win over Arizona State, Arnold led the team with 14 points. The Tucson native suffered a shoulder injury on Dec. 27 at Washington.

WILDCATS BOAST PAC’S ACTIVE SCORING LEADERS: Arizona boasts the Pac-10’s top two active career scoring leaders in All-America candidates Dee-Dee Wheeler and Shawntinice Polk. The point guard Wheeler currently has 1,765 career points, while Polk has scored 1,325 points in her three seasons at Arizona. The duo rank second and fourth all-time at Arizona in career points.

80 IS THE MAGIC NUMBER: In the program’s 33-year history, the Wildcats are almost guaranteed a win when they reach 80 points. Arizona is 171-20 (90 percent) all-time when reaching the 80-point plateau. With Joan Bonvicini at the helm, the Wildcats are 123-13 (90 percent) when scoring 80 points or more. This year alone, Arizona is 7-0 in games where it has reached 80 points in the scoring column.

WHEELER BECOMES ARIZONA’S STEAL LEADER: Senior guard Dee-Dee Wheeler tied the school record for career steals at the 10:41 mark in the first half of the game at Southern California on Jan. 14 and took sole possession of the record with 11:08 left in the game. She now has 272 steals on her career.

BONVICINI WINS 250TH GAME AT ARIZONA: Joan Bonvicini notched her 250th win as the head coach at Arizona when the Wildcats defeated then-No. 19 UCLA on the road last Sunday. In 14 years at the helm, she boasts a 252-153 (.622) record and is the winningest coach in Arizona women’s basketball history.

DOUBLE-DOUBLE TROUBLE: During her career, junior Shawntinice Polk has recorded 42 double-doubles (21 as a freshman, 16 as a sophomore and five as a junior). The longest streak came at the start of her career, when she opened the 2002-03 season with eight consecutive double-doubles. During her three seasons, the Wildcats are 32-10 when Polk notches a double-double.

ALL GOOD THINGS MUST COME TO AN END: Point guard Dee-Dee Wheeler’s streak of 48 consecutive games with 10 or more points came to an end at USC as the senior finished with just five points. The last time she failed to reach double-digit scoring was March 23, 2003, when she had seven points in a loss to Notre Dame. Wheeler has scored 10 or more points in 99 of her 112 career games.

CATS’ NATION-LEADING HOME WIN STREAK ENDS: Arizona’s 34-game winning streak, the longest in the nation, came to an end Jan. 9 when the Wildcats fell 78-66 to Stanford. The Cats have won 37 of their last 38 games at McKale, dating back to the start of the 2002-03 season.

WHEELER STARTS 100TH GAME: When she took the court against Arizona State on Jan. 3, senior Dee-Dee Wheeler was making the 100th start of her career. In doing so, she became just the sixth Wildcat ever to start 100 or more games.

CURRENT CATS ON UA CAREER LISTS: Senior guard Dee-Dee Wheeler is first in steals (272), second in scoring (1,765), field goals made (688), field goals attempted (1,496) and minutes played average (32.3), third in total minutes played (3,620), fourth in scoring average (15.8), three-point field goals made (166), three-point field goals attempted (463), three-point field goal percentage (.359) and games started (107), and seventh in assists (430).

Junior Shawntinice Polk is first in double-doubles (42), blocks (197), rebounding average (10.0) and field goal percentage (.592), second in total rebounds (821), third in scoring average (16.2), fourth in scoring (1,325) and field goals made (549), sixth in free throws attempted (405), seventh in minutes played average (28.7) and 10th in free throws made (227).

WILDCATS RANK NATIONALLY IN ATTENDANCE: In the attendance figures compiled before Arizona’s game against Arizona State on Wednesday, the Wildcats ranked 49th nationally in attendance with an average attendance of 2,190. Connecticut is the leader with a 14,066 average, while Pac-10 opponents Oregon, Stanford, Washington and Arizona State rank 25th, 27th 33rd and 35th, respectively, at 3,701, 3,688, 3,072 and 2,633.

WILDCATS ON THE RADIO: All of Arizona’s games this season are broadcast on Tucson’s Jolt, KJLL 1330 AM, the radio home of Arizona women’s basketball. With Paul Johnson in his 10th year as the Wildcats’ play-by-play announcer, the Jolt will broadcast every game, home and away.

WILDCATS ON TELEVISION: The Wildcats have two more games this season that will be broadcast on FSN:

Saturday, Jan. 29 - 4 p.m. vs. Maryland

Saturday, Feb. 19 - 2 p.m. at Oregon

In addition, the Wildcats’ home games against Southern California (Feb. 12) and Washington (Feb. 26) are "wild card" games that could get picked up in the Pac-10 television package with FSN.

JOAN BONVICINI COACH’S SHOW: Hosted by Wildcat radio announcer Paul Johnson, the Joan Bonvicini Coach’s Show is broadcast live from 6-7 p.m. every Monday on KJLL 1330 AM and is held at the Varsity Clubs of America, located at Speedway and Alvernon. The show features Bonvicini with several special guests, ranging from players to staff members. Fans are invited to join the audience of the show at the Varsity Clubs each week during Pac-10 play.

UP NEXT: Arizona travels to the Bay Area for a 7 p.m. game at No. 2 Stanford next Thursday, Feb. 3.

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