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    Irish Look To Extend Nation's Longest Current Winning Streak

    FIGHTING IRISH Danielle Green and Notre Dame look for the season sweep of St. John's when the Red Storm visit the Joyce Center Saturday.
    FIGHTING IRISH
    Danielle Green and Notre Dame look for the season sweep of St. John's when the Red Storm visit the Joyce Center Saturday.
    FIGHTING IRISH

    Feb. 11, 2000

    NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The Notre Dame women's basketball team looks to extend the nation's current longest winning streak to 17 games as the Irish (20-2, 11-0) host St. John's (8-13, 3-8) in the second meeting of the season between the two teams. Tonight's game is the final of a three-game homestand for the Irish. Notre Dame does not play at home again until Tuesday, February 22 when it hosts Miami in the regular season home finale.

    Coach Muffet McGraw's squad won its school-record 16th straight game on Wednesday night with its 81-74 victory over Pittsburgh. The 74 points given up by Notre Dame in the game marked the first time in 16 games (since losing to Purdue 71-61) that the Irish had given up more than 70 points.

    The win over the Panthers gave Notre Dame its seventh consecutive 20-win season and marked the second straight year that the Irish have reached it in the 22nd game. It is, however, the earliest a Notre Dame has reached the 20-win mark in the program's history. A year ago, McGraw's team earned its 20th win of the season at Villanova on February 10, 1999.

    Notre Dame also looks to build on its school-record 19-game home winning streak. The Irish have not lost at the Joyce Center since dropping a 106-81 decision on December 8, 1998 to Connecticut.

    Tonight's game is the second meeting of the season between the Red Storm and Irish. Notre Dame has won all eight games played between the two teams, including its 69-49 victory on January 26. This will be St. John's fourth visit to the Joyce Center.

    For the third consecutive week, the Irish are fifth in the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today rankings, which marks all-time highs in both polls during the regular season.

    In its last eight outings, Notre Dame has given up just 57.6 points per game and have held opponents to 60 points and under in all seven of those contests.

    Notre Dame has been ranked in the top 10 of the AP poll 27 of the past 30 weeks, including a school-record 19 consecutive weeks from November 16, 1998 thru November 29, 1999. The Irish have been in the top 10 of the ESPN/USA Today poll for 30 straight weeks

    St. John's (8-13, 3-8) at
    No. 5/5 Notre Dame (20-2, 11-0)

    Date: Saturday, February 12, 2000
    Place: Joyce Center (11,418)
    Time: 7:00 p.m. (EST)
    Radio: All Notre Dame games are broadcast on WHLY-AM (1620 in South Bend). Jeremy Gray provides play-by-play for games.

    Notre Dame Probable Starting Lineup

    No.NameHometownPos.Ht.Cl.PPGRPG
    32Julie Henderson***Ann Arbor, MIF/C6-3Sr.4.54.0
    00Ruth Riley**Macy, IN C6-5Jr.15.26.8
    12Danielle Green***Chicago, ILG5-8Sr.12.33.7
    22Alicia RatayLake Zurich, ILG5-11Fr.14.54.8
    33Niele Ivey** St. Louis, MO G5-8Sr.10.83.7

    Off The Bench

    No.NameHometownPos.Ht.Cl.PPGRPG
    3Ericka HaneyToledo, OHG/F6-1So.6.53.8
    11Karen SwansonWestlake, OHG5-7Fr.0.70.4
    23Monique HernandezRio Rancho, NMG5-9Fr.2.51.0
    31Amanda BarksdaleFriendswood, TXF6-3Fr.1.21.3
    41Imani Dunbar**San Angelo, TXG5-7Jr.1.11.6
    44Meaghan Leahy*Wilbraham, MAF6-4So.2.82.7
    50Kelley Siemon**Edina, MNF6-2Jr.7.35.0

    * - Indicates monograms won

    Series Record
    Notre Dame leads 8-0
    Home: 3-0
    Away: 4-0
    Neutral: 1-0

    DateSiteScore
    1-4-96Jamaica, NYW74-58
    1-24-96Notre Dame, INW66-53
    2-2-97Jamaica, NYW75-47
    1-10-98Jamaica, NYW77-57
    2-12-98Notre Dame, INW76-44
    2-28-98Piscataway, NJ*W94-57
    1-23-99Pittsburgh, PAW99-60
    1-26-00Jamaica, NYW69-49

    * BIG EAST Tournament

    Series ScoringTotalAverage
    Notre Dame63078.8
    St. John's42553.1

    Current Win Streak: Notre Dame, 8 games
    McGraw vs. St. John's: 8-0
    ND Biggest Win: 39 (99-60 on 1-23-99)
    SJU Biggest Win: -
    ND Longest Win Streak: 8 (from 1996-00)
    SJU Longest Win Streak: -

    PITTSBURGH REVIEW - Despite an inconsistent performance, Notre Dame was able to hold off the Panthers 81-74 to run its winning streak to a school-record 16 consecutive games. Alicia Ratay scored 20-plus points for the fourth time this season as she had a game-high 20 points. Ratay, who led the Irish with 14 in the first half, was five-of-eight from three-point range. Ruth Riley chipped in 19 points, while Niele Ivey and Kelley Siemon added 12 and 11, respectively. Notre Dame shot 54.5 percent from the field, while the Panthers connected on 46.6 percent accuracy. The 46.6 percent accuracy from the field marked the second highest field goal percentage by an opponent and only the second time this season an opponent has shot better than 46 percent. The Irish committed 27 turnovers in the game and outrebounded Pittsburgh 36-25.

    NOTRE DAME - ST. JOHN'S (Part 1) - Notre Dame held an opponent to under 50 points for the first time this season with a 69-49 victory over the Red Storm. St. John's shot just 23.9 percent from the field, the lowest shooting percentage by an Irish opponent this season, while Notre Dame hits 49.0 percent of its shots. Ruth Riley and Danielle Green were the only two players in double figures as they scored 16 points each. Notre Dame owned a 46-40 advantage on the boards, while Kelley Siemon led the Irish with a then season-high nine rebounds in the game.

    NOTRE DAME EARNS SEVENTH STRAIGHT 20-WIN SEASON - Notre Dame's 81-74 victory over Pittsburgh gave Notre Dame its 20th win of the season and marked the seventh straight campaign in which the Irish have reached that mark. McGraw's squad has reached that mark in 11 of the 13 seasons she has been with the program. Notre Dame's 20 wins in the 22nd game of the season equals the fastest the Irish squad has reached that mark, but the earliest in terms of date. Notre Dame has won 20 or more games in 15 of its 23 seasons.

    SIEMON, RATAY CLAIM BIG EAST WEEKLY HONORS - Junior forward Kelley Siemon was named the co-BIG EAST Player of the Week and freshman guard Alicia Ratay was named the co-Rookie of the Week for their performances against Providence and Boston College. Siemon earns the honor for the first time in her career after averaging 17.0 points and 10.5 rebounds last week. Against Providence, Siemon scored a career-high 23 points and grabbed seven rebounds. In the Boston College game, she recorded her first double-double of the season and second of her career as she scored 11 points and grabbed a personal-high 14 rebounds. She shot 15-of-20 from the field (.750) in the two games and also played a career-high 36 minutes against the Eagles.

    Ratay was recognized with rookie-of-the-week honors for the fourth time this season. She averaged 14.0 points and 4.5 rebounds as she scored 16 points and grabbed three rebounds against the Friars, and then followed that with a 12-point and six-rebound performance versus Boston College.

    TOUGH TO SCORE ON - Notre Dame's defense currently is yielding just 60.7 points per game to its opponents in 22 games overall, and in its 11 BIG EAST wins, has given up just 57.0 ppg. In its last 15 games, only one opponent (Pittsburgh on Wednesday night) has scored more than 63 points. The Irish held St. John's to 49 points, the fewest yielded by an opponent this season. In the last 15 games, Notre Dame is giving up just 57.8 points per outing.

    RILEY HAS HIGH SCHOOL NUMBER RETIRED - Notre Dame junior Ruth Riley had her high school number ?25? retired at North Miami High School (Indiana) on Thursday night (January 6). The Macy, Ind., native was a standout in three sports - basketball, volleyball and track. She is the first such athlete from her high school to have her number retired.

    IVEY NAMED FINALIST FOR ST. LOUIS COLLEGE SPORTSWOMAN OF THE YEAR - Niele Ivey, a native of St. Louis, Mo., and product of Cor Jesu High School, was named a finalist for the College Sportswoman of the Year award which is being presented by the St. Louis Association for Girls and Women in Sport. Nominees for the award were those from the St. Louis area who had distinguished themselves in the community and the athletic arena.

    FOLLOW RUTH ON THE WEB - A website highlighting the season accomplishments of Irish junior center Ruth Riley has been created on the official Notre Dame athletic department website (www.und.com). Information (season and career statistics and audio updates) can be found at www.und.com/ruthriley.

    RADIO SCHEDULING UPDATE - With the women's basketball and hockey games being played at the same time (7:00 p.m.) tonight, this evening's broadcast of the women's basketball game is being heard on WHLY (1620 AM) instead of on WJVA (1580 AM).

    IRISH TOUGH AT HOME AGAINST BIG EAST FOES - Notre Dame has compiled a 40-3 (.930) record against BIG EAST opponents at the Joyce Center since joining the league in 1995-96. All three of those losses have been to Connecticut. Notre Dame was a perfect 9-0 at the Joyce Center in league action during the 1996-97 campaign.

    19 AND COUNTING - Notre Dame won its 16th consecutive home game (a school record) with its 71-56 victory over Syracuse on January 15. The current win-streak stands at 19 with the 81-74 victory over Pittsburgh on Wednesday night. The former mark of 15 was set on two previous occasions before the current win streak. The 19-game Joyce Center streak began on December 10, 1998 when the Irish defeated Villanova 63-62. That win followed a 106-81 setback to Connecticut on December 8, 1998 which snapped a 15-game win streak.

    HELPING PUT THE BIG IN THE BIG EAST - During its four-plus seasons as a member of the BIG EAST Conference, Notre Dame has proven to be one of the league's most dominant teams. The Irish have a 70-13 record (84.3percent) in regular season games and an 8-4 mark (66.7 percent) in BIG EAST tournament action for an overall record of 78-17 (82.1 percent) against league opponents. Of Notre Dame's 17 league losses, 10 have come against Connecticut. The Irish have lost to four other teams in the BIG EAST - Rutgers (three times), Boston College (twice), Villanova and Miami. All of the losses to those teams have come on the road.

    SIEMON PROVIDES A SPARK OFF THE BENCH - Kelley Siemon has been a real spark for the Irish off the bench scoring in double figures in all three of those contest and averaging 15.5 points and 8.7 rebounds. Siemon record her first double-double of the season (and second of her career) against Boston College last Saturday when she scored 11 points and grabbed a career-high 14 rebounds. That game was preceded by a personal-best 23 points versus Providence which marked the second 20-point performance in her two-plus seasons at Notre Dame. Against the Friars, Siemon hit 10-of-12 shots from the field and nailed three-of-six attempts from the charity stripe. She also grabbed seven rebounds in the contest and dished off three assists in 28 minutes of action. Her only other 20-point outing came during her freshman year at UCLA when she scored 20 points against the Bruins in a double overtime victory on November 30, 1997. Siemon had 11 points and five rebounds in the win over Pittsburgh on Wednesday night.

    GREEN APPROACHING 1,000 POINTS - Danielle Green became the 16th player in Notre Dame women's basketball history to reach the 1,000-point mark. The senior guard now has 1,001 career points and owns a 9.4 career scoring average. Green is the second player this season to reach the milestone, earlier in the season, junior Ruth Riley became Notre Dame's 15th 1,000-point scorer.

    GREEN NETS SEASON-HIGH AGAINST HURRICANES - Danielle Green topped the 20-point mark for the first time this season in scoring a season-high 22 points against Miami. It marked the seventh time in her career that she scored 20 or more points in a game. Last season, Green netted 20-plus points in five contests contests a year ago, which included the first three games of the 1998-99 campaign.

    HENDERSON GETS FIRST CAREER DOUBLE DOUBLE - Senior Julie Henderson had her first career double-double against Miami as she scored a season-high 13 points and grabbed a personal best 11 rebounds. It was the first time this season that Henderson had scored in double digits and marked the first time in her career with 10 or more rebounds.

    A BIG ASSIST - For the second straight year, Niele Ivey has dished off 100-plus assists and has 435 in her career. Ivey reached the 400-assist mark against Pittsburgh on January 18 and is just the fifth Notre Dame player to reach that mark. She ranks 12th nationally with a 6.8 assist-per-game average and has dished off eight or more assists in 10 of Notre Dame's last 16 games. Ivey has dished off 10 or more assists in four games this season.

    RILEY IN DOUBLE FIGURES - Ruth Riley has failed to score in double figures in just three games this season - Toledo (0 points), West Virginia (nine points) and Providence (eight points). After being held scoreless for the first time in her career (64 games) in the season opener against Toledo, Riley came back to score in double figures in 10 consecutive games. She has scored 20-plus points three times and netted a season-high 32 points against Liberty on December 5 which marked the third 30-point performance of her career. Riley had 20 points in a win over Florida International at the Orange Bowl Women's Basketball Fab Four and scored 23 in her squad's recent victory over Boston College. She leads the team in scoring as she is averaging 15.0 ppg. Riley has scored in double figures in 65 of 85 career games.

    RILEY'S DOUBLE-DOUBLES - Ruth Riley, who led Notre Dame and the BIG EAST Conference with 12 double-doubles last season, registered her third double-double of the season against Pittsburgh on January 18 as she scored 12 points and grabbed a season-high 14 rebounds. It marked the third time in four games that she posted a double-double. She had back-to-back double-double performances in in early January against Georgetown and Seton Hall. Riley had 18 points and 13 rebounds versus the Hoyas which marked her first double-double of the season, and then followed that with a 17-point and 13-rebound performance in a win over Seton Hall. She has 24 career double-doubles and has grabbed 10 or more rebounds 25 times in her career

    FRESHMAN FOLLIES - Freshman guard Alicia Ratay is second on the team in scoring (14.5) and third in rebounding (4.8). Ratay, a four-time BIG EAST rookie-of-the-week honoree, has topped the 20-point mark three times this season, including a 32-point performance against North Carolina which marked just the second 30-point performance by an Irish rookie in the 22-year history of the program. Ratay led Notre Dame in scoring for the ninth time this season against Pittsburgh Wednesday night as she scored a game-high 20 points, her fourth 20-point performance of the season. She has reached double figures in 14 contests this season.

    IRISH CAPTURE WACHOVIA WOMEN'S INVITATIONAL - Notre Dame captured the Wachovia Women's Invitational Tournament in Richmond, Va., as the Irish beat North Carolina and Liberty in the seventh annual event. The tournament is recognized as one of the most prestigious in-season events.

    Junior center Ruth Riley was named MVP of the tournament in addition to being selected along with freshman Alicia Ratay to the all-tournament team. Riley scored 32 points (the third 30-point performance of her career) against Liberty in the championship game as she connected on 12-of-14 shots from the field and was a perfect eight-for-eight from the free throw line. In addition, she had seven rebounds and two blocked shots in 29 minutes of action. Against North Carolina, she registered 12 points, seven rebounds and four blocked shots in 28 minutes. For the tournament she averaged 22.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 3.0 blocked shots. Riley also was 17-of-22 (.773) from the field and a perfect 10-for-10 from the charity stripe.

    Ratay had the first 30-point performance of her career, and second-ever by a Notre Dame freshman, when she tossed in 32 points on a 12-for-15 shooting performance against North Carolina. The Irish rookie also hit six-of-eight from three-point range. In the championship tilt, she was the only other Notre Dame player in double figures as she netted 17 points, grabbed four rebounds and dished off five assists playing a season-high 36 minutes. For the tournament, she averaged 24.5 points, 5.0 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 2.5 steals. Ratay shot 18-of-25 (.720) percent from the field and was seven-for-11 (.636) from three-point range.

    POLL WATCHING - For the third straight week, Notre Dame is ranked fifth (an all-time high) in the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today rankings. The Irish have been been ranked in the top 10 of the AP poll 27 of the last 30 weeks over the past two seasons. The Irish slipped out of the top 10 (after a school-record 19 consecutive weeks there) on November 29, 1999, prior to that, Notre Dame had held a spot in the top 10 of every poll dating back to November 16, 1998. Coach Muffet McGraw's squad has now been ranked 30 consecutive weeks in the top 10 of the ESPN/USA Today ranking. Notre Dame has earned a top 25 ranking for a school-record 32 consecutive weeks, breaking the old mark of 24 weeks set from February 5, 1996 thru March 10, 1997.

    HEAD COACH MUFFET McGRAW - Notre Dame head coach Muffet McGraw is in her 13th season with the Irish and 17th as a collegiate coach. She has guided Notre Dame to four straight NCAA tournament appearances and six overall. McGraw led the Irish to the 1997 Final Four as her team claimed the East Regional championship. In 1998, McGraw's squad finished with a 22-10 mark and advanced to the Sweet 16. In 12-plus seasons at Notre Dame, she has a record of 281-112 (.715), and in 17-plus campaigns overall, her teams have registered a 369-153 (.707) ledger. Prior to coming to Notre Dame, she spent five seasons at Lehigh where she compiled an 88-41 record for a .683 winning percentage. Last season, McGraw, after guiding the Irish to their sixth consecutive 20-win season, was named as a finalist for the Naismith Women's Basketball and Associated Press coach-of-the-year awards.

    PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER MAGAZINE TO FOLLOW IRISH ALL SEASON - Annette John-Hall, a feature writer for the Philadelphia Inquirer will be following head coach Muffet McGraw, a native of Pottsville, Pa., and the Irish all season long and feature them in the magazine section of that publication. She will file stories throughout the season on McGraw and her squad. Hall has already written three features thus far with the fourth installment scheduled for sometime in February.

    IRISH GET 200TH WIN AT JOYCE CENTER - Notre Dame earned its 200th win at the Joyce Center against Valparaiso on December 29. Since its inaugural season in 1977-78, the Irish own a 207-65 mark for a .761 winning percentage. Notre Dame set a new school record with its 16th consecutive home victory at the Joyce Center against Syracuse on January 15. The last time the Irish lost at home was on December 8, 1998. The Irish have won a school-record 15 straight on two occasions - January 2, 1995-January 10, 1996 and December 10, 1997-December 2, 1998. Both times Connecticut stopped the Irish home win streaks.

    HOME SWEET HOME - Since its inaugural season in 1977-78, Notre Dame has played all of its games at the Joyce Center. The Irish own a 207-65 mark for a .761 winning percentage since that first season. Currently, the Irish are 11-0 at home and have won 19 straight home games dating back to the 1998-99 campaign. Last season, Notre Dame won a school-record 12 games at home en route to a 12-1 home mark. During the last four-plus seasons, Coach Muffet McGraw's squad is 57-4 (.934) at the Joyce Center.

    SERIES RECORD VERSUS ST. JOHN'S - Notre Dame has won all eight meetings between the two teams. The Irish are 3-0 at the Joyce Center versus the Red Storm. The last time St. John's played at Notre Dame (January 23, 1999) they dropped a 39-point decision (99-60).

    LINEUP SHAKEUP - In the 22 games played this season, Notre Dame has used seven different starting lineups. Below is a listing of the starting lineups and ND's record with that starting five. The lineup of Julie Henderson, Ruth Riley, Danielle Green, Alicia Ratay and Niele Ivey has been what Coach Muffet McGraw has used the last nine games.

    • Haney, Siemon, Riley, Ratay and Ivey - (1-0)
    • Haney, Ratay, Riley, Green and Ivey - (0-1)
    • Henderson, Riley, Ratay, Ivey and Dunbar - (3-1)
    • Haney, Henderson, Riley, Ratay and Ivey - (5-0)
    • Haney, Siemon, Riley, Ratay and Dunbar - (1-0)
    • Riley, Green, Ratay, Ivey and Siemon - (1-0)
    • Henderson, Riley, Green, Ratay and Ivey - (9-0)

    HOT SHOOTING - Notre Dame is hitting 50.1 percent of its shots from the field this season (636-1270), including a season-high 63.3 percent (31-49) against Georgetown on January 29. The Irish shot better than 60 percent in one other game this season - Liberty (62.7 percent). In 11 of its 22 games, Notre Dame has shot better than 50 percent from the field.

    COLD SHOOTING - No opponent has shot better than 50 percent against the Irish this season as Notre Dame has limited its 21 foes to just 35.2 percent from the field. Four of those teams have shot under 30 percent - Butler (.265), West Virginia (.265), St. John's (.239) and Georgetown (.269). Illinois, a team the Irish faced in the second game of the season, shot 47.5 percent (the highest of any opponent). In 18 games, Notre Dame's opponents have shot under 40 percent.

    RILEY REACHES 1,000-POINT - Junior center Ruth Riley became the 15th player in Notre Dame women's basketball history to reach the 1,000-point plateau this season. Riley reached the mark in the first half of Notre Dame's win over Florida International on December 19. The 6-5 Macy, Ind., native has 1,216 career points in 85 career games for a 14.3 career scoring average. Currently, Riley is 10th on the Irish career scoring list. She needs just 18 points to move to ninth on the list ahead of Mary Beth Schueth who played for the Irish from 1981-85 and scored 1,233 points during her four-year career.

    RILEY GRABS 600TH REBOUND - Ruth Riley reached another milestone against Syracuse on January 15 when she grabbed her 600th career rebound. She is the 10th player in Notre Dame history to have achieved that mark. She currently is ninth on the all-time Irish rebounding list with 642. The junior center needs three rebounds to pass Heidi Bunek (1985-89) who finished with 644 boards. Riley is one of just nine Irish players to score 1,000 points and grab 600 rebounds.

    IRONWOMAN - Against Boston College, Ruth Riley made her 79th consecutive start in an Irish uniform. The Irish junior has played in all 85 games throughout her career. Her first career start came in the seventh game of her freshman season at Wisconsin in Madison, Wis., on December 8, 1997.

    A PERFECT 10 - Ruth Riley, who has made 74 of her 88 free throw attempts this season (.841), was a perfect 10-for-10 from the charity stripe against Georgetown. It marked a personal best for the Irish junior who earlier this season hit eight-of-eight from the line against Liberty en route to a 32-point performance. Riley's free throw shooting percentage has improved dramatically from a year ago a she made just 69.0 percent of her attempts.

    MANDY IS DANDY AGAINST HOYAS - Freshman Amanda Barksdale had her best outing in an Irish uniform and had personal bests of eight points, eight rebounds and five blocked shots against Georgetown on Jan. 29 while playing a career-high 17 minutes against the Hoyas. Barksdale was three-of-four from the field and two-of-four from the charity stripe.

    A BLOCKING PARTY - Amanda Barksdale, averaging just 5.3 minutes of playing time per game, has blocked 30 shots this season, second best on the team. She had a personal best seven blocks against Providence.

    GREEN GAINS STARTING ROLE - Senior guard Danielle Green, who had come off the bench earlier in the season, has started the last 10 games for the Irish and has been in the starting lineup in 11 of the 19 games she has played. She is the team's third leading scorer averaging 12.3 ppg., and has scored in double figures in 12 of the last 15 games she has played. Green has scored in double figures in 13 games overall.

    DOUBLE DIPPER - Guard Niele Ivey had her fourth double-double of the season in Notre Dame's win over Seton Hall on January 11 as she scored 14 points and dished off 10 assists. It was the eighth double-double of her career and the eighth time she has dished off 10 or more assists in a game. Her other double-doubles this season have come against North Carolina (17 points, 13 assists), Michigan State (14 points, 11 assists) and Marquette (19 points, 12 assists).

    RILEY NOTCHES THIRD 30-POINT PERFORMANCE - Ruth Riley's 32-point performance in the championship game of the Wachovia Women's Invitational marked the third time in her career that she scored better than 30 points in a game. Riley had two 30-plus efforts last season, both against Providence College, as she scored 36 and a school-record 41.

    A ROOKIE RARITY - Alicia Ratay's 32-point performance against North Carolina was the first 30-point outing of her brief career and marked just the second time an Irish freshman has scored better than 30 points in a game. The only other Notre Dame rookie to record a 30-point performance was Michelle Marciniak as she scored 33 versus Georgia in a 90-86 loss on December 8, 1991.

    RILEY NAMED FINALIST FOR NAISMITH PLAYER OF THE YEAR - On everyone's preseason All-America teams, Ruth Riley, a third-team Associated Press All-America selection in 1999, is one of 10 finalists for the 1999-2000 Naismith Women's Basketball Player of the Year Award which is presented by the Atlanta Tip-off Club. Riley and the nine other candidates were selected by a vote of the Board of Selectors comprised of leading college basketball coaches, journalists and basketball analysts. She is the first Notre Dame women's basketball player to be named a finalist for the award, which was first presented in 1983. The nine other finalists include: Svetlana Abrosimova (Connecticut), Edwina Brown (Texas), Tamika Catchings (Tennessee), Tamicha Jackson (Louisiana Tech), Maylana Martin (UCLA), Kelly Miller (Georgia), Lynn Pride (Kansas), Semeka Randall (Tennessee) and Nikki Teasley (North Carolina).

    NON-CONFERENCE LOSSES A RARITY - Notre Dame's loss to Purdue marked just the second loss the Irish had suffered to a non-conference opponent during the regular season in two seasons. The Irish were a perfect 8-0 against non-conference foes during the 1998-99 regular season. When Notre Dame lost to Illinois on November 27, it marked the first regular season loss to a non-conference opponent in 12 games. Heading into its matchup with the Illini, Notre Dame's last non-conference regular-season loss was to Wisconsin (89-77) on December 8, 1997.

    RATAY NETS 18 IN DEBUT - Freshman guard Alicia Ratay, a first-team Parade High School All-American, scored 18 points in her collegiate debut. It was the most by an Irish rookie in her first college game since Michelle Marciniak scored 16 points in an 86-70 loss to Penn State on November 22, 1991. Ratay's five field goals were all from three-point range as she hit five-of-eight field goals from beyond the arc.

    RILEY HELPS USA WOMEN'S BASKETBALL CAPTURE SILVER MEDAL - Ruth Riley was one of 12 players selected to the 1999 World University Games Team. She and 1999 graduate Sheila McMillen (now an assistant coach at Western Michigan) were among the 44 players invited to Colorado Springs, Colo., for the five-day tryout. The team, coached by Penn State's Rene Portland, took home the silver medal after posting a 4-2 mark in Palma de Mallorca, Spain, site of the basketball competition. Riley appeared in all nine games with the USA and started five of those contests and was the team's third-leading scorer and second-leading rebounder as she averaged 9.3 points and 5.2 rebounds, with a .630 field-goal percentage. At a tournament in Madrid Spain prior to the start of the World University Games, the USA Women's Basketball squad posted a 3-0 mark and captured first-place. During those three games, she averaged 7.3 points and 5.3 rebounds. This was Riley's second stint with the USA Women's basketball program. In the summer of 1998, she was a member of the USA Women's Basketball Select Team.

    SIEMON TOURS WITH BIG EAST TEAM - Junior Kelley Siemon averaged 6.6 points and 4.6 rebounds in helping the BIG EAST/Nike Women's Basketball All-Stars to a 4-1 record in a '99 summer tour of Belgium and Germany. Siemon scored 14 points in the win over Aalst (Division) and had seven points and eight rebounds in a win over the Belgian Junior National Team. The team was coached by Boston College's Cathy Inglese.

    IRISH SIGN TWO - Notre Dame signed two players listed among the top 40 prep players in the country during the early signing period. Jeneka Joyce, a 5-9 shooting guard from Topeka, Kan., and Le'Tania Severe, a 5-9 point guard from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., were rated 26th and 40th, respectively, by Blue Star Basketball.

    QUICK PLAYER BIOS

    Amanda Barksdale blocked personal best seven shots and scored seven points in win at Providence after scoring eight points, grabbing eight rebounds and blocking five shots versus Georgetown while playing a season-high 17 minutes - has seen action in 21 contests - has blocked 17 shots in last five games- second on the team with 30 blocked shots.

    Imani Dunbar earned starts against Butler, North Carolina, Liberty, Purdue and Marquette and has played in 20 games - earned first career start versus the Bulldogs - played a career-high 23 minutes against USC and registered personal bests of eight assists, five rebounds and three steals.

    Danielle Green has started the last 10 games and has been in double figure scoring in 12 of the last 15 games and in 13 games overall - became the 16th player in Notre Dame women's history to score 1,000 points (reached the mark against Pittsburgh on Wednesday night) - scored a season-high 22 points against Miami while adding six rebounds and a personal best six assists - had a stretch in which she scored in double figures in six consecutive games - chipped in 19 points in Saturday's win over Boston College - has scored 16 points in three different games - Toledo, St. John's and Providence - grabbed a season-high eight rebounds against Valparaiso - missed three games (Butler, North Carolina and Liberty) due to a disciplinary suspension.

    Ericka Haney has started eight games this season and has played in all 22 contests - first career start came against Toledo in the season opener - scored in double figures in five of Notre Dame's first seven games, but has failed to reach double figures in last 13 contests - recorded first career double-double with personal bests of 18 points and 14 rebounds against North Carolina - tallied a season-high 11 points against Butler and also added five rebounds and three assists in the game - grabbed six rebounds in the Valparaiso game - scored 10 points in her first collegiate start in the season opener at Toledo.

    Julie Henderson has been in the Irish starting lineup in 17 of 21 contests - recorded her first career double-double scoring a season-high 13 points and grabbing a personal best 11 rebounds - prior to Miami, she had scored season-high six points on five different occasions (North Carolina, Liberty, Michigan State, USC and Seton Hall) - grabbed eight rebounds against Purdue - also had four rebounds against the Tar Heels, five versus Florida International and six versus the Spartans and Women of Troy - grabbed five rebounds versus Valparaiso - scored seven points, grabbed six rebounds and dished off four assists against St. John's.

    Monique Hernandez played in the first seven games of the season and has seen action in 20 contests - scored a career-high six points against West Virginia and Seton Hall - had five points, four rebounds and two assists against Valparaiso - played a season-high 15 minutes in both the Butler and North Carolina contests - scored four points and grabbed four rebounds against Butler - also netted four points in win over Marquette.

    Niele Ivey has been in the starting lineup for 21 of 22 games - scored a season-high 22 points against Syracuse - 18 of those 22 points came from three-pointers as she made a career-high six in the contest - led the Irish with 18 points, seven rebounds, seven assists and five steals in win over Georgetown in second meeting between the two teams - had a career-high nine rebounds against Boston College - has registered four double-doubles, most recent was against Seton Hall as she scored 14 points and dished off 10 assists - has eight career double-doubles and has dished off 10 or more assists in eight games - registered a season-high 19 points and dished off 12 assists in win over Marquette for her seventh career double-double -?had first double-double of the season against North Carolina as she scored a then season-high 17 points and dished off a career-best 13 assists versus North Carolina in the Wachovia Women's Invitational Tournament - the 13 assists in the game also marked a tournament record - has scored in double figures in 12 games this season - had 14 points and 11 assists in win over Michigan State.

    Meaghan Leahy has come off the bench for the Irish in 20 games - tied her personal best of nine points against Georgetown - had career-highs of nine points and nine rebounds while playing 24 minutes (also a career-high) against Butler - scored seven points and grabbed seven rebounds in 18 minutes of action against Illinois - grabbed five rebounds against Michigan State and dished off a career-high four assists.

    Alicia Ratay has scored in double figures in 14 games and has been Notre Dame's leading socrer on nine occasions - was named game MVP at the Orange Bowl Women's Basketball Four Four against Florida International - scored 27 points, grabbed five rebounds and made five steals (personal best) in the contest while playing a season-high 39 minutes against the Panthers - turned in only the second 30-point performance by an Irish rookie when she scored 32 points against North Carolina - in her collegiate debut, scored a game-high 18 points and grabbed seven rebounds in 33 minutes of action - it was the most points by an Irish rookie in a season opener since 1991 - has earned BIG EAST Rookie of the Week honors four times this season - selected to the all-tournament team at the Wachovia Women's Invitational Tournament - has had a career-high seven rebounds in three games (Toledo, Butler and Marquette) - had the fourth 20-plus point performance of her career when she scored 20 points against Pittsburgh - one of two players who has started all 22 games.

    Ruth Riley has been in double figure scoring in 19 of 22 games and has three double-doubles this season - her most recent double-double was against Pittsburgh as she scored 12 points and grabbed a season-high 14 rebounds - posted back-to-back double-doubles against Georgetown (18 points, 13 rebounds) and Seton Hall (17 points, 13 rebounds) - has 24 career double-doubles - had the third 30-plus outing of her career when she scored 32 points against Liberty in the championship game of the Wachovia Women's Basketball Invitational - one of just two players who has started all 22 games - one of just nine players at Notre Dame who has scored more than 1,000 points and grabbed more than 600 rebounds.

    Kelley Siemon recorded her first double-double of the season and second of her career as she scored 11 points and grabbed a career-high 14 rebounds - has scored in double figures in Notre Dame's last three games - netted a career-high 23 points (the second 20-point outing of her career) against Providence as she hit 10-of-12 shots from the field and was three-of-six from three-point range - has scored in double figures in five games - selected as the co-BIG EAST Player of the Week following her performances against Providence and Boston College.

    Karen Swanson is a walk-on freshman who has played in 19 games - tallied her first career basket against USC - registered her first career three-pointer against Vaparaiso.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    (Week of Feb. 7)

    LW
    1.Connecticut1
    2.Tennessee4
    3.Georgia3
    4.Louisiana Tech2
    5. NOTRE DAME5
    6. Penn State6
    7.LSU7
    8.Iowa State8
    9.Texas Tech9
    10.Rutgers10
    11.North Carolina State11
    12. Santa Barbara13
    13. Auburn13
    14.Duke12
    15.Purdue17
    16.Arizona19
    17.Oklahoma22
    18.Old Dominion16
    19.Boston College18
    20.UCLA15
    21. Mississippi State20
    22.Virginia24
    23.Kansas25
    24.StanfordNR
    25.Tulane21

    ESPN/USA TODAY
    (Week of Feb. 7)

    LW
    1.Connecticut1
    2.Georgia2
    3.Tenness ee4
    4.Louisiana Tech3
    5.NOTRE DAME5
    6.Penn State6
    7.Texas Tech7
    8.North Carolina State8
    9.Iowa State9
    10.LSU11
    11.Rutgers12
    12.Duke10
    13.Santa Barbara13
    14Arizona15
    15.Auburn13
    16.Old Dominion16
    17.Mississippi State19
    18.Boston College18
    19.Purdue20
    20.UCLA17
    21.Virginia23
    22.Kansas24
    23.Virginia20
    24.Tulane22
    25.Illinois21

    NOTRE DAME POLL WATCHING
    (Week By Week)

    DateAPESPN/USA Today
    Preseason89
    Nov. 1579
    Nov. 2266
    Nov. 29118
    Dec. 676
    Dec. 13117
    Dec. 20128
    Dec. 27108
    Jan. 386
    Jan. 1066
    Jan. 1756
    Jan. 2455
    Jan. 315 5
    Feb. 75*5*

    * all-time regular-season high

    Irish Record

    By Day

    On Sundays:3-0On Mondays:1-0On Tuesdays:3-0
    On Wednesdays:5-1On Thursdays:0-0On Fridays:0-0
    On Saturdays:8-1

    By Time

    Night Games:10-1
    Day Games:10-1

    By Location

    Home Games:11-0
    Road Games:7-2
    Neutral Games:2-0

    By Halftime Score

    Lead at halftime:20-0
    Trail at halftime:0-2
    Tied at halftime:0-0

    By Rebound Margin

    Outrebounding opponents:18-0
    Outrebounded by opponents:2-1
    Same number of rebounds0-1

    By Field Goal Shooting

    Shoot better from field:20-1
    Shoot worse from field:0-1
    Shoot same from field:0-0
    Shoot 50% or better:11-0
    Shoot less than 50%:9-2
    Keep opponents under 50%:20-2
    Keep opponents under 40%:16-0

    By Free Throw Margin

    Hit more free throws:14-0
    Hit fewer free throws:5-2
    Same number of free throws:1-0

    By Turnovers

    Commit fewer turnovers:9-0
    Commit more turnovers:10-2
    Commit same number of turnovers:1-0

    By Margin

    One-point games:0-0
    Two-point games:0-0
    Three-point games:0-0
    Four-point games:0-0
    5-10 point games:2-2
    11-20 point games:10-0
    21-30 point games:7-0
    31+point games:1-0

    By Conference

    Mid-American1-0
    Big Ten1-2
    Midwestern Collegiate1-0
    Atlantic Coast1-0
    Big South1-0
    Sun Belt1-0
    Pac 101-0
    Mid-Continent1-0
    Conference USA1-0
    BIG EAST11-0

    By Month

    In November 1-1
    In December7-1
    In January9-0
    In February3-0
    In March0-0

    1999-2000 BIG EAST STANDINGS
    (through games of Feb. 11)

    BIG EASTOverall
    RecordRecord
    NOTRE DAME11-020-2
    Connecticut10-021-1
    Rutgers8-216-4
    Boston College8-219-5
    Georgetown6-413-8
    Villanova6-413-8
    Providence4-69-11
    Pittsburgh 4-713-9
    Providence4-79-12
    Miami3-79-12
    St. John's3-88-13
    Syracuse2-79-11
    Seton Hall1-97-13
    West Virginia1-106-16

    1999-2000 BIG EAST WEEKLY AWARDS

    Player of the Week
    Nov. 22Becky Gottstein (BC)
    Jen Gombotz (PC)
    Nov. 29Shea Ralph (UC)
    Dec. 6Ruth Riley (ND)
    Swin Cash (UC)
    Dec. 13Becky Gottstein (BC)
    Katie Smrcka-Duffy (GU)
    Dec. 20Cal Bouchard (BC)
    Shawnetta Stewart (RU)
    Dec. 27Shanetta Stewart (RU)
    Svetlana Abrosimova (UC)
    Jan. 3Becky Gottstein (BC)
    Monika Roberts (PC)
    Jan. 10Sue Bird (UC)
    Jan. 17Jenea Skeeters (VU)
    Niele Ivey (ND)
    Jan. 24Beth Record (SU)
    Jan. 31Latasha Thompson (SJU)
    Alissa Murphy (BC)
    Feb. 7Kelley Siemon (ND)
    Katie Smrcka-Duffy (GU)

    Rookie of the Week

    Nov. 22Amanda Papuga (UM)
    Nov. 29Shannon Perry (SU)
    Trish Juhline (VU)
    Dec. 6Alicia Ratay (ND)
    Dec. 13Santia Jackson (GU)
    Dec. 20Alicia Ratay (ND)
    Dec. 27Kennitra Johnson (UC)
    Jan. 3Mandy Wittenmyer (UP)
    Jan. 10Alicia Ratay (ND)
    Brooke Stewart (UP)
    Jan. 17Alicia Hartlaub (UM)
    Jan. 24Shannon Perry (SU)
    Jan. 31Aiysha Smith (SJU)
    Feb. 7Alicia Ratay (ND)
    Mandy Wittenmyer (UP)


     

     

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