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North Dakota is 2-0 with sophomore Kelsey Knox in the starting lineup.
Big Sky opener at UNC Saturday
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Updated: Sunday 12/20/2013 15:21:14 (ET)
by Mitch Wigness, UND Media Relations
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North Dakota (5-3, 0-0 Big Sky) at

Northern Colorado (5-4, 0-1)
DATE: Saturday, Dec. 21,2013 | 2:00 p.m. CT
SITE: Greeley, Colo. (Butler-Hancock)
RADIO:  KSNR 100.3 FM
WEB AUDIO: UNDSports.com
WEB VIDEO: WatchBigSky.com
LIVE STATS: UNCbears.com
TWITTER: @UNDWBasketball

ON TAP
North Dakota opens its Big Sky Conference schedule Saturday with a road tilt at Northern Colorado.  UND will then step outside of league play for one final time, heading to the University of Iowa on Dec. 28.

QUICK JUMPERS
*North Dakota is two games over .500 for the first time this season.
*UND got double-double outputs from two players in Wednesday’s win over Mayville State (Mia Loyd, 19 pts, 22 rbs/Madi Buck- 10 pts, 11 rbs).
*Katie Klapprodt scored her first collegiate points Wednesday with a three late in the second half.
*Megan Lauck suffered an injury in the win at Milwaukee and is out indefinitely.
*This game has been moved up an hour (1:00 pm Mountain) from original schedule.

SCOUTING NORTHERN COLORADO
UNC opened the Big Sky Conference schedule with a 75-63 home loss to Southern Utah Thursday ... Senior forward Molly Duehn recorded the first double-double of her career with a season-high 10 points and a career-high 10 rebounds in the loss ... Stephanie Lee leads the Big Sky in scoring in the early going with her 20.2 points per game average ... Lee also leads the team with her 3.0 blocks per game and chips in 5.4 rebounds per contest (third on team) ... Leading scorer and rebounder from last season-- D’shara Strange-- is redshirting the 2013-14 season.

THE ALL-TIME SERIES WITH THE BEARS
North Dakota has dominated the all-time series, 31-4, but the Bears won both contest last season. UND started the series with 16 straight wins before UNC won a 68-66 decision in UND’s first NCAA Division II national championship season (1997). UND scored 41 points in each contest against the Bears last year.

BUCK WILD
Senior Madi Buck enjoyed a game for the ages in the win over the Bison Dec. 14. She poured in 37 points and added nine rebounds, three steals, three assists and a block to help UND rally from down seven in the final minutes. Some notes from that win:
*Buck was named the Big Sky Conference co-Player of the Week.
*Her 37 points were tied for seventh-most in UND history.
*Those 37 are the most by a Big Sky player this season to date.
*It was the most points by a UND player since Becky Moen scored 37 vs. Minnesota Crookston on Dec. 20, 2002.
*She racked up 26 of her point total in the second half.
*In the final 2:05 of the game (final four UND possessions), Buck tallied eight points, a rebound and a steal.

22 FOR #2
Sophomore forward Mia Loyd gathered a whopping 22 rebounds in the win over Mayville State, Dec. 18. She had already tied her career high in the first half with 13 rebounds before halftime. Here are some notes from that performance:
*22 rebounds tied for second-most by a UND player in a single game.
*She out-rebounded Mayville State in the first half (13-12).
*22 boards most-ever by a UND player at home.
*That total is tied for fourth-most by a DI player this season (as of Dec. 20).

CRASHING THE BOARDS
UND corralled 60 rebounds in the win over Mayville State, Dec. 18. That total is the most for North Dakota in the Division I era for the school. UND also out-rebounded the Comets by 30, also the largest rebounding margin since North Dakota transitioned in 2008-09.

GET OUT!
UND ranks eighth in NCAA Division I in blocked shots coming into the week. North Dakota averages 6.3 blocks per contest, second-most in the Big Sky Conference. North Dakota has tallied 10 blocks in a game three times this season.

THIS THE SEASON TO BE CHARITABLE
North Dakota leads the league in free throw percentage at .763 through Monday. Impressive on its own, but even more considering UND is averaging 24.7 free throw attempts per game, most in the conference on average, just edging out Southern Utah (24.3), Northern Colorado (22.9) and Weber State (22.6).

BOARD EDUCATION
North Dakota crashes the boards better than its opponents, a +9.4 margin. That rate tops the Big Sky Conference. UND averages 45.6 rebounds per game (1st in Big Sky), but also allows just 36.2 (2nd best) to its opponent on average.

SZA- NOT-TOO-BLAH
Freshman point guard Leah Szabla charted a career-high nine assists in the Nov. 14 win over NDSU. It marked the most assists since Mallory Youngblut’s nine-assist effort on March 4, 2010 against Houston Baptist. The last UND player to reach double figures in that category was Danye Guinn, who dished out 11 dimes in a March 7, 2009 win over Houston Baptist.

TOP OF THE SUMMIT
UND has gotten the best of the Summit League, winning all four of its contests over the league in the past three seasons. In 2011-12, North Dakota defeated then-Summit member Southern Utah. Last season, UND bested North Dakota State and this year UND has picked up wins over South Dakota and North Dakota State.

MY OH MIA
Sophomore forward Mia Loyd has already tripled her production from last year from distance, making 3-of-10 from three this season. Last year, her only make was in the season finale at Southern Utah, a huge hit that helped UND erase a 21-point deficit to send the game to overtime.
 
BLOCK WALL
Senior Allyssa Wall swatted away five shots in the win over South Dakota, Nov. 17. That tied for a career high, a mark she has hit five times in her four seasons at UND. For her career, Wall has 152 rejections, tied for fifth all-time at the school.

Career blocks
1. Jenny Crouse    494
2. Sandi Walford    187
3. Kierah Kimbrough    181
4. Sheri Kleinsasser    175
5. Nadine VanDeKerckhove    152
    Allyssa Wall    152

THREE TO 1,000?
Coming into the season, seniors Allyssa Wall (734), Madi Buck (714) and Megan Lauck (692) all have a shot at surpassing the 1,000-point plateau this season and would look to become just the third UND trio of teammates to be in four figures in the same season. (1999 (4)- Jenny Crouse, Jaime Pudenz, Tiffany Pudenz, Katie Richards; 1997 (3)- Kelli Britz, Jenny Crouse, Tiffany Pudenz.)

A BIT ABOUT LAST SEASON (11-18)
The University of North Dakota women’s basketball team became the first program at UND to defeat a PAC-12 team with a 62-56 win at Utah on Dec. 29, 2012 ... Madi Buck led North Dakota in scoring (10.7 ppg) and rebounding (7.8 rpg) ... Megan Lauck was second in the Big Sky Conference in free throw shooting (.835) ... UND renewed the rivalry with in-state foe North Dakota State, defeating the Bison in Fargo, N.D., 73-63 on Nov. 30 in the first game in the series since 2004 ... North Dakota scored a season-high 94 points in the season finale double-overtime loss at Southern Utah (Mar. 7) ... Lauck scored 36 points in that game, tied for 10th-most by a UND player in a single game.
 
RECORD REWIND
The University of North Dakota women’s basketball program holds an 820-330 (.713) record all-time since the first game was played in 1974.
 
HOME COOKIN’
All-time, North Dakota is 449-93 (.827) 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-CHA!
North Dakota is 114-24 (.826) 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 -------------------- 8-6
2013-14 -------------------- 4-0
 
UND EIGHTH, NINTH IN BIG SKY POLLS
Eastern Washington was selected as the team to beat in the 2013-14 Big Sky Conference Preseason Women’s Basketball Polls. The Eagles garnered six of the 11 first-place votes in the coaches poll and 20 of 30 top nods in a poll of the media. North Dakota was picked eighth by its fellow coaches and ninth by the media that cover the league.
 
2013-14 SCHEDULE
Regional rivalry games highlight the 2013-14 University of North Dakota women’s basketball schedule. Home tilts against North Dakota State and South Dakota coupled with the first of a three-year series against Minnesota precede the second season of Big Sky Conference play for UND.
 
2013-14 schedule by the numbers
*75th all-time meeting between UND and NDSU (UND leads, 41-33)
*20 Big Sky Conference games
*16 home games total (2 exhibitions)
*Nov. 10 date of first regular season game (at Iowa State)
*Nov. 17- regular season home opener (vs. South Dakota)
*13 games against postseason teams (NCAA- Iowa State, Iowa, Montana (2); WNIT- Eastern Washington (2), Idaho State (2), No. Colorado (2), Northern Iowa, Minnesota; WBI- South Dakota.

WATCH BIG SKY
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 watchbigsky.com and clicking on the Big Sky TV button.
 
FOLLOW UND ON MOBILE
Take North Dakota women’s basketball with you wherever you go with UNDsports.com’s mobile app. . Download it to your computer or your smart phone for free and follow your team wherever they go.
 
CAN I GET A WIGNESS?
UND women’s basketball home games can be heard live on KSNR 100.3 FM or KKXL 1440 AM in Grand Forks. Cat Country is the home for UND basketball-- 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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