No. 20/18 UK Hoops Welcomes Ole Miss Thursday
Feb. 3, 2010
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The hot-streaking No. 20/18 University of Kentucky women's basketball team puts its 14-game home winning streak and school record five-game Southeastern Conference winning streak on the line when it welcomes Ole Miss to Memorial Coliseum Thursday, Feb. 4 at 7 p.m. EST. The game will be televised live on the CW in Lexington and shown on a tape delayed basis on FSN South at 9 p.m. EST. The game also will be broadcast live on the Big Blue Sports Radio Network with Neil Price.
Single-game general admission tickets are available for $5 adults/$2 senior citizens and children 6-18. Ages five and under are admitted free. UK students, faculty and staff also are admitted free with valid identification based on availability. For further ticket information, log on to UKathletics.com or call the UK ticket office at 859-257-1818 or 1-800-928-CATS (2287).
Women's basketball parking is available in the following surface lots and parking structures:
Other important notes:
The Wildcats (18-3, 6-2 SEC), who currently rank second in the league standings behind Tennessee, have won a school-record five consecutive league wins and their 14-straight wins in Memorial Coliseum tie for the third-longest home win streak in school history. Despite the winning streaks third-year coach Matthew Mitchell wants his team to stay "humble and hungry."
"The last five games certainly should have given us some confidence and probably the best thing to happen to us was losing the South Carolina game," Mitchell said. "It is always fresh on our mind that if we don't come in day-in and day-out and do what is necessary we are certainly capable of getting beat. It is a good group to coach right now and they are really hard working team. They had a great effort yesterday. We have so far to go, though. We certainly cannot get at a point where we relax."
The Rebels, who are in a tie for third place in the SEC standings with Florida, are looking to get back on a winning streak of their own after dropping the last two games. Prior to reeling off five consecutive conference victories, including upsets over No. 12 LSU and No. 9 Georgia, Ole Miss fell to South Carolina (64-50) and Florida (67-64) last week.
"We have a very tough opponent tomorrow night and Ole Miss has had a very good season up to this point," Mitchell said. "They are a very high scoring and dangerous team and anytime that you have the leading scorer in the conference on your team that is something that you have to bring a lot of attention to. We had a tough time guarding her last year in Oxford, and she seems to have improved her game. They have a veteran team and I was noticing all the seniors that they have and that is so valuable in the SEC. They are a well-coached team and an athletic team and it will be a big challenge for us."
Senior guard Bianca Thomas leads Ole Miss in both scoring and rebounding. She currently tops the SEC in scoring with 21.1 ppg while grabbing a team-high 5.6 caroms a game. Junior guard Kayla Melson follows with 13.1 ppg and dishes out a conference-high 6.5 assists per game.
Kentucky is led by the reigning SEC Player of the Week, Victoria Dunlap. The 6-2 forward from Nashville, Tenn., averages a team-high 17.6 points and 8.9 rebounds per game. She holds the distinction of being the only player in the SEC to rank in the top three of both the scoring and rebounding statistical categories. She also ranks fifth nationally and leads the league in steals, averaging 3.4 per game. Against Mississippi State on Sunday, Dunlap became the 27 th player in school history to score her 1,000 th career point. Following Dunlap in the scoring column is SEC Freshman of the Week Adia Mathies (Louisville, Ky.). She averages 11.7 points per game and ranks second in the SEC in steals with 2.6 per game.
Kentucky and Ole Miss are two of the most productive offensive teams in the SEC. The Wildcats currently lead the SEC and rank 13th nationally in scoring offense at 77.4 points per game while Ole Miss follows with 75.0 ppg.
UK's pressure defense also has been its key cog this season as the Wildcats are holding opponents to 56.4 points per game (fourth in the SEC) and are allowing teams to shoot just .368 from the field and .288 from three-point range. Only one team has scored over 67 points against UK this season.
Thursday marks the 31 st meeting between the squads. The Rebels lead the series 20-10, including a 10-4 advantage when the game is played in Lexington. UK has won two of the last three meetings after falling last season in Oxford, 69-60.
Matthew Mitchell Pregame Press Conference