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Women's Ice Hockey MM
Coming down the stretch, next three at home
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Updated: Tuesday 02/20/2013 11:01:57 (ET)
by Mitch Wigness, UND Media Relations
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DATE
: Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013 | 7:00 p.m. CT
SITE: Grand Forks, N.D. | Betty Engelstad Sioux Center
RADIO:  KSNR 100.3 FM (Mitch Wigness)
WEB AUDIO: UNDSports.com
WEB VIDEO: BigSkyTV.org
TV: Midco Sports Net (Dan Hammer, Greg Stemen)/ DirecTV 6223
LIVE STATS: UNDSports.com
TWITTER: UNDWBasketball

DATE: Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013 | 2:00 p.m. CT
SITE: Grand Forks, N.D. | Betty Engelstad Sioux Center
RADIO:  KKXL 1440-AM (Mitch Wigness)
WEB AUDIO: UNDSports.com
WEB VIDEO: BigSkyTV.org
TV: Midco Sports Net (Dan Hammer, Greg Stemen)/DirecTV 626
LIVE STATS: UNDSports.com
TWITTER: UNDWBasketball

ON TAP
UND plays three of its final four games at home, beginning Thursday with a dual against second-place Northern Colorado. Two of North Dakota’s final four regular season contests come against teams that UND is also battling with for the seventh and final Big Sky Conference postseason berth.

LAST WEEK’S ACTION
Host Sacramento State used a pair of 14-0 first-half runs to grab an 80-62 win Thursday night at the Hornets’ Nest. Sac State turned UND over 31 times in the contest and converted those into 48 points on the night. Saturday saw late heroics from Madi Buck force overtime at Northern Arizona, but the host Lumberjacks prevailed with a 64-60 win. Buck recorded her seventh double-double of the season (18 points, 13 rebounds) in the loss.

SCOUTING THE BEARS
Northern Colorado finds itself a half-game back of first place in the Big Sky Conference and has already clinched a postseason berth. The Bears feature the stingiest defense in the conference heading into the week, allowing just 54.4 points per game.  UNC also shoots a league-best .411 field goal percentage. Northern Colorado also can boast two of the top seven scorers in the Big Sky. Senior Lauren Oosdyke averages 14.1 per game while junior D’shara Strange drops in 13.6 per contest.

SERIES HISTORY... NORTHERN COLORADO
Former North Central Conference foes in their Division II days, North Dakota has a whopping 31-3 all-time mark against Northern Colorado. UNC’s win earlier this season snapped a nine-game losing streak in the series for the Bears.

EARLIER THIS YEAR WITH UNC
North Dakota registered a season-high 33 turnovers in a 53-41 loss in Greeley, Colo. Dec. 22, 2012.  Madi Buck hauled-in 14 rebounds and added 10 points but it was not enough to overcome a 27-point effort from Northern Colorado’s D’shara Strange. It was a 21-all tie at the break until Strange poured-in 19 of her game-high tally after halftime and added nine steals for the contest.

SCOUTING THE VIKINGS
Portland State sits a half-game ahead of North Dakota, holding down the nine spot in the Big Sky standings. Saturday’s game is crucial as not only would a PSU win drop UND in the standings, but it would give the Vikes the tiebreaker. Senior Courtney VanBrocklin’s 15.6 points per game average is second in the Big Sky Conference while junior Angela Misa grabs 10.2 rebounds per contest, second-best in the league.

SERIES HISTORY... PORTLAND STATE
The series with Portland State is all square at two apiece after PSU’s win earlier this season. Before this season, all three prior games were played in the early to mid 1990s. North Dakota won the first game, 78-46 (12/30/92) at Hyslop Sports Center. Both of PSU’s wins have come in Portland, Ore.

EARLIER THIS YEAR WITH PSU
Host Portland State overcame a 10-point first-half deficit and a 52-35 rebounding disadvantage to earn a 73-66 win over North Dakota Jan. 19. North Dakota was led by sophomore Emily Evers’ 17 points and 10 rebounds. Madi Buck added 16 points and nine rebounds while Megan Lauck chipped-in 14 points, six rebounds and seven steals. PSU’s Allison Greene led all scorers with 18, part of four Vikings in double figures.

START-TEN LINEUP
UND has had ten different players in its starting five at some point this season. Only junior Allyssa Wall  and freshman Josie Dillon have not made a start this season for UND. Senior Nicole Smart and junior Madi Buck are the only two players to start every contest this season.

CHERRY TURNOVER
Limiting turnovers has been the key thus far for success as UND is 5-0 when it turns the ball over 15 times or less this season. Additionally, North Dakota has won its last five games in which it its opponent has equal or more turnovers this season.

WON’T BACK DOWN
Through its first 12 games, UND played a pair of teams that made the NCAA Tournament and six more that advanced to the WNIT last year.

NCAA- Iowa State, Idaho State; WNIT- Harvard, Duquesne, South Florida, Drake, Northern Colorado, Utah.

BUCK STARTS HERE
Junior forward Madi Buck was recognized as the Big Sky Conference Player of the Week Jan. 2 for her performance in UND’s 62-56 upset win at Utah Dec. 29. The Bismarck, N.D. native scored a team-high 18 points and grabbed six rebounds to go along with a career-high five blocked shots in the win. She became the second North Dakota player to earn the award after Emily Evers grabbed honors earlier in the season.

“CENTER” OF ATTENTION
Sophomore center Emily Evers was named co-Big Sky Conference Player of the Week Dec. 10. Evers broke out in the win over Air Force last Tuesday by establishing new career bests with 17 points and 15 rebounds in the blowout victory over the Falcons. She also added two assists and a pair of blocks in just 14 minutes of action. She followed that performance with another 17-point effort in Saturday’s overtime win against Drake. She notched yet another double-double-- her third of her career-- with 10 rebounds as well. Evers chipped-in four blocks and two steals and sealed the win in the final second of overtime with a free throw make.

UND’s OVERTIME OVER TIME
Before its Dec. 8 win over Drake, North Dakota had not played in an overtime contest since a 81-79 win at South Dakota back on Jan. 13, 2007. Saturday, UND took a 64-60 defeat in overtime at Northern Arizona for its first OT loss since Mar. 15, 2004  in the NCAA Division II North Central Regional Final against South Dakota State (72-70). All time, UND is now 14-10 in games decided in extra frames, including a perfect 3-0 mark when it goes beyond one extra period.

A BIT ABOUT LAST SEASON (21-11)
The University of North Dakota women’s basketball team picked up the Great West Conference regular-season and postseason tournament titles, winning nine straight games to finish 9-1 in league play ... Center Allyssa Wall (North Sioux City, S.D.) was named to the GWC All-Tournament team and was voted the tournament’s most valuable player ... Also named to the all-tournament team was center Emily Evers (Grand Forks, N.D.), who averaged a team-high 13.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg, and shot 74.4 percent from the field ... UND advanced to its first-ever NCAA Division I postseason play, heading to Seattle University for the first round of the Women’s Basketball Invitational (WBI).

RECORD REWIND
The University of North Dakota women’s basketball program holds an 814-324 (.717) record all-time since the first game was played in 1974.

OPEN SEASON
The season-opening loss to Harvard pushed UND’s record in season openers to 29-8 all-time. North Dakota is now 19-5 in season openers at home, including losses each of the past two seasons.

NO CUPCAKES
The home opener is the start of a very challenging part of UND’s schedule. Each of the first four opponents qualified for a postseason tournament a season ago. In addition, only one of those games is at home for UND (vs. Harvard). Iowa State went to the NCAA Tournament while Harvard, Duquesne and South Florida all competed in the WNIT.

PROTECT AND SERVE
All-time, North Dakota is 443-91 (.831) when it comes to defending its own court. The team played at the  UND Fieldhouse/Hyslop Sports Center before moving into its current home at the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center in 2004-05.

YOU BETTY, YOU BETTY, YOU BET!
North Dakota is 110-21 (.840) all-time at the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center, which opened prior to the 2004-05 season.

Season records at ‘The Betty’
2004-05 -------------------- 13-2
2005-06 -------------------- 19-1
2006-07 -------------------- 17-2
2007-08 -------------------- 14-1
2008-09 -------------------- 13-0
2009-10 -------------------- 8-4
2010-11 -------------------- 9-5
2011-12 -------------------- 10-3
2012-13 -------------------- 7-4

UND FIFTH, SIXTH IN BIG SKY POLLS
UND was picked to finish fifth by the media and sixth by the coaches in the 2012-13 Big Sky Conference preseason polls. After three seasons in the Great West Conference following its move to NCAA Division I, UND enters its first season in the league.

The top four spots were identical in both polls with Idaho State, the defending Big Sky regular season and tournament champion, grabbing the top position. Northern Colorado was the runner-up with Montana and Montana State slotted third and fourth, respectively, in both polls.

2012-13 SCHEDULE
This year’s slate includes 16 total home games (two exhibitions),10 games against postseason teams (NCAA- Idaho State (2), Iowa State;  WNIT- No. Colorado (2), Drake, Duquesne, Harvard, South Florida, Utah), a re-kindling of the North Dakota State rivalry and the inaugural season of the Big Sky Conference. UND will play each Big Sky foe twice in home-and-home contests to make up 20 of North Dakota’s games this season.

BIG SKY TV
Catch all home games and all conference road games live for FREE on the internet, thanks to Big Sky TV. The free video webstream is available by logging onto bigskyconf.com and clicking on the Big Sky TV button.

FOLLOW UND ON IHEART RADIO
Take North Dakota women’s basketball with you wherever you go with KSNR 100.3 FM (CatCountry) on the iheartradio app. Download it to your computer or your smart phone.

CAN I GET A WIGNESS?
All UND women’s basketball home games during the Big Sky Conference schedule can be heard live on KSNR 100.3 FM or KKXL 1440 AM in Grand Forks. Be sure to tune to 1440AM for all UND basketball home games in conference action with Mitch Wigness providing women’s basketball play-by-play and Paul Ralston handling the home men’s games.
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