UK Hoops Announces Non-Conference Schedule
July 8, 2009
LEXINGTON, Ky. - Thirteen games against teams from 11 different conferences, including high-profile matchups against Louisville, Middle Tennessee and UC Santa Barbara, highlight Kentucky's 2009-10 non-conference women's basketball schedule, head coach Matthew Mitchell announced Wednesday.
Eight of Kentucky's opponents posted winning records during the 2008-09 campaign, including six with 20 or more wins. Six teams - Boston University, Butler, Louisville, Middle Tennessee, UT-Chattanooga, and UC Santa Barbara - advanced to the postseason.
"We work really hard to construct a schedule that will prepare us for success in the SEC," Mitchell said. "We feel like we have accomplished that this year as our non-conference schedule includes very exciting and formidable opponents."
The non-conference slate includes nine home games, including contests against first-time opponents Boston University and McNeese State and the annual rivalry game against Louisville on Sunday, Dec. 20.
UK Hoops opens its 36th season of varsity women's basketball, its third under Mitchell, with a home game against first-time foe Boston University on Friday, Nov. 13. The Terriers are looking to continue their success from last season after finishing 25-8 overall and compiling an unblemished 16-0 record in America East play.
"Nine non-conference home games should give our fan base a great opportunity to get to know our team," Mitchell said. "We are excited about hosting Boston University in our home and season opener and really we just can't wait for the season to start."
One of the highlights of the non-conference season will be a road trip to Santa Barbara, Calif., on Nov. 25. The Cats met the Gauchos last season in Lexington, defeating the Big West regular season and tournament champions, 69-58. Other notable road games include Morehead State (Nov. 17) and Middle Tennessee State (Dec. 28). The Wildcats have not traveled to either school since 1989.
The Wildcats will play host to first-time foe McNeese State of the Southland Conference on Saturday, Nov. 28 followed by a matchup in Memorial Coliseum again the RedHawks of Miami Ohio on Tuesday, Dec. 1. First-year head coach Jamelle Elliott and her Cincinnati Bearcats welcome Kentucky on Friday, Dec. 4 for the first time since 2004.
UK returns five letter winners from a team that finished 16-16 overall, 5-9 in the SEC and advanced to a school-record fifth straight postseason tournament last season. The most notable returnees are junior All-SEC selections Victoria Dunlap (Nashville, Tenn.) and Amber Smith (Winter Haven, Fla.) along with senior Amani Franklin (Stone Mountain, Ga.). The trio represents the leading returners in almost every category, including scoring and rebounding. Dunlap averaged a team-high 12.8 points, 9.1 rebounds, 1.2 blocks, and 1.8 steals per game while Franklin averaged 11.3 points and 4.9 rpg. Smith, UK's leader in assists (114) followed with 7.8 ppg. Mitchell and his staff also welcome nine newcomers to the squad, including six freshmen and three Division I transfers.
Season tickets for UK's entire 17-game home schedule, to be completed and released later this summer, are just $45. Fans interested in season tickets can go to UKathletics.com or call the UK ticket office at 1-800-928-CATS.
Complete non-conference schedule is attached.
NOTE: The SEC and TV schedule will be released at a later date