Feb. 5, 2013
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee women's basketball team gets its first look at its final two Horizon League opponents of the season, hitting the road to take on UIC Thursday night. The Panthers, who nearly knocked off second-place Detroit in their most recent contest, take on a Flames squad that has dropped four-straight on the season but has defeated UWM three times in a row in the all-time series. Tip time is set for 7 p.m.
The Last Meeting
March 1, 2012
Shorthanded Milwaukee Women Fall Late At UIC
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee women's basketball team led by nine points with less than seven minutes to play, but could not hold off a late charge in falling to UIC, 59-52, Thursday night at the UIC Pavilion.
UWM Game Notes
Looking At UIC
Head coach Regina Miller returns for her second season after going 18-13 in her UIC debut. The Flames graduated more than 70 percent of their offense from last season while also entering 2012-13 as the most inexperienced team in the Horizon League with six freshmen and eight newcomers. The team is 6-14 overall headed into play on Thursday, including a 2-5 mark in conference after dropping four straight. Rachel Story (14.6 ppg) and Katie Hannemann (12.2 ppg) are the only players to be averaging double-figures.
Milwaukee leads the all-time series, 25-17, but UIC has won four of the past five, including a regular-season sweep a year ago. The Flames won, 67-41, in Milwaukee and also handed the Panthers a 59-52 loss in Chicago.
Senior Sami Tucker and sophomore Ashley Green each had a double-double but the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee women's basketball team could not upend second-place Detroit, falling 61-59 Saturday afternoon at the Klotsche Center.
The Panthers (5-13, 1-5 Horizon League) held the Titans (12-7, 5-2 Horizon League) a dozen points below their league-leading scoring average and also held Shareta Brown - who came into the game third in the NCAA in points per game - nearly 14 points below her average.
Tucker finished with a team-high 18 points and tied her career-high with 14 rebounds. Green recorded 13 points and 12 rebounds as each player posted consecutive double-doubles. Junior Emily Decorah was also in double-figures, finishing with 12 points on four made 3's.
Senior Sami Tucker (16 pts/13 reb) and sophomore Ashley Green (10 pts/10 reb) each posted a double-double against Loyola Jan. 31, marking the first time a pair of teammates accomplished the feat in the same game since February 12, 2011 (Lindsay Laur/Angela Rodriguez against UIC) - a span of 53 games.
They took it a step further against Detroit Feb. 2 when each of them once again came through with a double-double - Tucker with 18 pts/14 reb and Green with 13 pts/12 reb. A look back at the old box scores reveals a program first (in NCAA D-I history, since 1990-91) - the first time that two players recorded double-doubles in back-to-back games. The closest previously? Pam Bartnick and Erica Young in 1993-94. Each had a span of two double-doubles over three consecutive games, but it did not occur in back-to-back contests.
The countdowns don't stop this season, as junior Angela Rodriguez is up next and looks to join senior Sami Tucker and become the 18th member of the 1,000-point club next. She sits at 922 entering play against UIC. Milwaukee has never had two players go over 1,000 points in the same campaign. Looking back, the 2002-03 season was the last time UWM even had a pair of 1,000+ scorers on the same roster (Viall and Jessica Wilhite).
Raising the Bar
Two players reached career-highs in points against Loyola Jan. 31, with junior Emily Decorah leading the way with 17. That topped her previous best of 15, accomplished twice before earlier this season. Sophomore Janna Swopshire also set a new standard with 13 points against the Titans, eclipsing her previous high of 11 set last February at Cleveland State.
Welcome to the Club
Sami Tucker reached 1,000 career points against Youngstown State Jan. 17 to become the 17th player in program history to reach that mark. The last player to crack 1,000 career points was Lindsay Laur in 2010-11, who went on to score over 1,400 career points. Tucker also became the ninth member of the club to do so exclusively in the program's Division I era. Tucker also went over 600 career rebounds in the DePaul game Dec. 11, making her one of just four players who have recorded over 1,000 points and 600 rebounds in a career. The rest of the list includes Traci Edwards (2,340 pts/1,193 reb), Maria Viall (1,867/971) and Lindsay Laur (1,404/791).
Sophomore Ashley Green completed her countdown to 500 points, as the sophomore sat at 487 heading into the Valparaiso game Jan. 24 and went off for a team-high 21 points. Her pair of free throws with 12:57 left in the contest were officially her 499th and 500th points. In the process, she became the 32nd player in school history to accomplish that feat, joining Tucker and Rodriguez on the current roster.
As of Monday Feb. 4, Milwaukee boasted three of the top seven three-point shooters in the Horizon League. Senior Sami Tucker was first at 41.8 percent, junior Emily Decorah was No. 3 at 39.4 percent and junior Angela Rodriguez checked in at No. 7 at 37.5 percent.
The Panthers are definitely a three-point shooting team in 2012-13 and are on pace to shatter team records in three-pointers made and attempted. At the current pace, UWM will finish with over 250 made 3's (record is 212 in 2010-11) and over 720 attempts (record is 586 in 1996-97).
A Look Behind The 30-Plus
The Panthers have now had two different players score 30 or more points in a game this season. Junior Angela Rodriguez netted 30 against DePaul Dec. 11 and sophomore Ashley Green had 33 against Bradley Dec. 4. That marks a program first as UWM has never had two different players pour in 30-plus points in a game in the same campaign. In fact, you have to look back to the 2002-03 roster to even find the last time two players who scored 30 or more in a game were playing on the same roster (Jessica Wilhite and Maria Viall).
More On The 3's
The Panthers have been clicking on offense so far, scoring over 80 points four times and close to the Horizon League lead at 67.2 ppg. The three-point shooting has certainly helped - UWM is hitting at a 35.6 percent clip (159-for-447) from long distance so far to lead the league (Green Bay is second at 33.0 percent). To rank that nationally, UWM finds itself an impressive 25th in the country in 3-point field goal percentage (in last NCAA stats update) and fifth in 3's made per game (8.6, with leader Creighton at 9.6).
Lighting Up The Scoreboard
The Panthers have scored 80-plus points in four games so far this season. A year ago, the team did not crack the 80-point barrier, topping out at 79. Looking back, the last time a UWM team scored more than 80 points at least four times in the same season was 2006-07 (four times that campaign). The last time Milwaukee netted at least 80 more than four times was back in 2000-01, when it accomplished the feat seven times.
Team Three ... It's a Trend
The Panthers are certainly a three-point shooting team this season, but also have a long history of making three's headed in to 2012-13. Milwaukee has made at least one three-pointer in every game dating back to an 0-for-4 showing from long-distance against Marquette back on November 26, 2002. That makes 318 games in a row heading into the game against UIC. It's a ways to go for the NCAA record, however, which is held by Canisius at 510 in a row (1994-2011). The Horizon League record was halted last year when Loyola came up empty at 446. Cleveland State held the record previously - which was also the NCAA mark at the time - at 408 (1992-2007). Coincidentally, the NBA's longest streak came to an end Dec. 15 when the Dallas Mavericks were stopped at 1,108 in a row.
Klotsche, Sweet Klotsche
After starting 2-0 in the Klotsche Center in 2012-13, the Panthers were unbeaten through two games at home for the first time since the 2003-04 campaign. The last time UWM had been at least 3-0 to start a home slate was 2000-01, when it won its first four games at home.
Records, Records Everywhere
Milwaukee and Bradley played a game for the ages Dec. 4, with the 116-112 double-overtime game thrilling the Klotsche Center crowd with 12 ties and two lead changes that all occurred after just three minutes remained in regulation and in the OT's. In all, nine records were set and one tied on the night.
-Milwaukee Game Records (old mark)
> 116 points by the team (104)
> 46 field goals made (39)
> 91 field goals attempted (83)
> 17 three-point field goals made (15)
+This was also a Horizon League record
> 31 assists (28)
-Combined Team Records (old mark)
> 228 combined points (200)
-Opponent Records (old mark)
> 36 free throws made (33)
> 43 free throws attempted (tie, 43)
> 16 free throws made by individual (11)
> 100% 16-16 individual FT's (11-11)
It's Kind Of A Big Deal
The Panthers had a trio of scorers against Bradley Dec. 4 that recorded a first of its kind for the program - the first time UWM has ever had one player over 30 points (Ashley Green with 33) and two others net over 20 points (Angela Rodriguez with 22 and Sami Tucker with 21). In fact, Milwaukee has only had three players score 20 or more points in the same game just twice prior: February 6, 1997 against Butler (Darryl Schaffeld 28, Jen Gregor 25, April Rodman 20) and February 17, 1996 against Cleveland State (Rodman 29, Jill Gutzke 21, Gregor 20). In addition, the only time UWM had as much as one 30-point/20-point combo was November 11, 2007 when Traci Edwards went for 30 and Aubri Rote added 20.
Now That Is Clutch
When sophomore Ashley Green fouled out early in the first overtime against Bradley Dec. 4, Milwaukee needed someone to carry the scoring load and Angela Rodriguez answered the call - and then some. All the junior guard did was score 11 of UWM's 14 points in the period - and assisted the other three-pointer the Panthers made. She went 5-for-7 from the floor in the five-minute session - including four makes in a row after Green fouled out.
Overtime. And Again
The double-overtime contest against Bradley Dec. 4 was just the eighth in program history (at the NCAA D-I level) and the first since December of 2008 against Wisconsin. Junior Angela Rodriguez played 45 of the possible 50 minutes against the Braves, tied for the fifth-most ever by a player in a single game. Daryl Schaffeld holds the mark at 50 (2/6/97).
The Trek Above 100
Taking a look back, the Panthers 116 points was not only an all-time program high, but broke the old standard of 104 by a dozen. In fact, the 116 points marked the second-highest output in the NCAA this year, topped only by the 118 that Troy tallied against Furman Nov. 18. The game marked just the fifth time UWM has eclipsed the 100-point barrier in its NCAA D-I history (just 5 of 640 games, or 0.78 percent) and the 11th time since basketball began at the school in 1971. The last time over 100 was nearly 10 years ago (vs. YSU, 2/2/02). The Panthers games in triple-figures include totals of 104 (Northeastern Illinois, 1/22/90), 102 (Detroit, 1/19/02), 101 (CSU, 2/17/96) and 100 (the YSU game). The 228 total points also broke the combined record of 200 and marked the first time both teams were 100-plus in the same contest.
Green Means Go
Sophomore Ashley Green scored a career-high 33 points against Bradley Dec. 4, marking the third time she established a new career-high this season (first 19, then 20) and the first 30-plus point game for a Panther in over two calendar years (last was Nov. 16, 2010). She finished a rebound short of a double-double and at one point scored 13 UWM points in a row. After scoring just five in the opener, Green went on a three-game roll against Wisconsin, Western Michigan and Georgia Tech where she set new a new career-high in points in back-to-back games and led the team in scoring and rebounds for three outings in a row. That marked the first such streak by a UWM player since Lindsay Laur led the Panthers in points and rebounds for four games in a row February 10-24, 2011.
Despite the tough loss at Michigan State Dec. 1, a look at the box score shows a stat that came very close to a record. The Panthers committed just eight turnovers in the game against an MSU team that came in ranked best in the nation defensively. That just missed the school record of seven, set against Drake last season.
Five Over Ten = Team Effort
For the second time this season, the Panthers had five players score in double-figures against Bradley Dec. 4. They also pulled off the feat against Western Michigan Nov. 14, which was a notable accomplishment. The last time UWM had at least five players score 10 or more points prior to those two games? The answer would be January 24, 2009 against Loyola - 109 games ago.
Out Of The Chutes
It may have been just three games, but at 2-1, the Panthers won two of their first three contests for just the second time in the past 11 seasons. The only other 2-1 start in that span came in the 2009-10 campaign. And at 3-2, the only other UWM team that had a better start through five games in the past 20-plus years was that 2009-10 squad that started 4-1.
Making A Name For Herself
Head coach Kyle Rechlicz was named the seventh coach in program history in the offseason. Now, she's off to one of the best starts - becoming the first UWM coach to win three of her first five contests of her initial campaign.
Rechlicz is also one of the youngest coaches at the NCAA Division I level. At 32, there are just seven coaches who have earlier birth years - DeUnna Hendrix of High Point University is the youngest at 28, while a pair of head coaches are 30 and a group of four checks in at 31.
The Panthers heated up from downtown against Western Michigan Nov. 14, coming close to quite a few team records when it comes to three-pointers after they hit 13-of-18 (72.2 percent) from beyond the arc. The first was team percentage in a game. Only a 78.6 percent clip (11-of-14) against Central Michigan back on December 17, 2000 was better in program history. The 13 total three's also came close to the school mark of 15 (set twice, most recently against Wright State December 31, 2010) and junior Emily Decorah's 5-of-6 performance (83.3 percent) was the sixth-best single-game performance in history.
Milwaukee continues to push the ball on offense under new head coach Kyle Rechlicz. At the time, the 88 points against Western Michigan Nov. 14 marked the most for a Milwaukee squad in the regular season since an 88-65 win over SIU Edwardsville in November of 2008. The team also netted 88 points in its exhibition against Hillsdale Nov. 3. To put the scoring average in perspective, in last year's final NCAA rankings, UWM's offense was 239th in the NCAA and eighth in the league. In the first NCAA report this season, they were first in the conference and 69th nationally.
Sami Tucker was named to the Preseason All-Horizon League Second Team in the league's annual preseason poll of head coaches, media members and SID's. In addition, College Sports Madness also named Tucker to its All-Horizon League Second Team for the second year in a row.
Start `Em Young
The Panthers were led in rebounding by a freshman in the season opener, as Avyanna Young collected nine boards to go along with her seven points in her UWM debut against Chicago State Nov. 9. That marked the second time in three seasons a frosh has led the team in rebounds in the season opener (Angela Rodriguez had seven to lead the way her freshman campaign) and it also marks highest rebound total ever for a freshman in a UWM season opener. The former mark was seven, done three times, most recently by Rodriguez. Young also tied for the team lead in rebounds in game two (with six) at Wisconsin.
Play Them All
The Panthers had all 12 players who were suited up for the season opener against Chicago State Nov. 9 play in the game. In fact, 10 of them found their way into the scoring column and 11 saw at least 10 minutes of playing time.
The Panthers now hold a 7-16 record in season-openers at the NCAA Division I level (dating back to 1990-91) after the 82-58 win over Chicago State Nov. 9. A year ago, UWM dropped a 68-51 decision to Wisconsin in the first game of the year.
The Panthers had a pair of returning players eclipse the 500-point mark in their careers last season. Senior Sami Tucker started the campaign with 483 and tallied her 500th at Drake Nov. 18. Junior Angela Rodriguez joined the club against Loyola Dec. 29, scoring 14 to move to 502 and become the 30th player to score 500 points in a career in program history.
Senior Sami Tucker became the 29th player to score over 500 points in a career and also added the title of 22nd player in program history to collect 500 rebounds during her junior campaign. Of the 14 she grabbed Feb. 23, her second of the game gave her No. 500. The last to accomplish the feat was Lindsay Laur (2007-11), who ended her career in fifth-place with 791.
Returning Starters + One
The Panthers return three starters from the regular rotation in senior Sami Tucker (30 starts in 30 games), junior Angela Rodriguez (28 in 28) and sophomore Ashley Green (24 in 30). And, with junior Emily Decorah also returning from injury after starting the first six games of the 2011-12 campaign, the team essentially has four starters returning to the mix for 2012-13.
Ashley Green was named to the All-Horizon League All-Newcomer Team after averaging 10.4 points and 5.4 rebounds per game. She started 24 out of 30 games on the season.
Milwaukee used a very young roster last season and the proof was in the numbers. Freshman and sophomores accounted for 113 of 150 starts (75.3%) and 4,221 of 6,025 minutes played (70.1%) last season. Sami Tucker was the only regular starter that was a junior or senior.
Trial By Fire
Ashley Green found her way into the starting rotation just six games into her freshman season. She responded well, averaging 10.4 points and 5.4 rebounds a game. In league play, she picked it up another notch, leading the team with 12.2 points per contest on 46.8 percent shooting from the floor.
Sami Tucker posted three-consecutive double-doubles last season, ending with 21 points and 11 rebounds at Western Michigan Dec. 3. The most recent comparable streak of consecutive double-doubles was in 2010-11 when Lindsay Laur posted five in a row (Dec. 19-Jan. 6).
Youth is Served
The Panthers will indeed be a young squad again this season, with the projected starting lineup being comprised of just one senior. In addition, five true freshmen join Milwaukee in 2012-13, giving the team a total of nine players (out of 15 on the roster) who will be either sophomores or freshmen.
Get Your Popcorn Ready
Fans will have the opportunity to watch the Panthers all season long. The team will play six games on television, returning to Time Warner Sports 32. Another 16 games will be carried live online on the Horizon League Network. For the Panthers' Sports 32 contests, Bob Brainerd and former UWM great Maria Viall will once again be calling the action.
Hit Us at 920 on the Dial
Every Milwaukee regular season game will once again be available on the radio and online via The Big 920 on your AM dial. Scott Warras is back for his seventh season donning the headset. Fans can also catch Warras' call with the majority of the team's HLN webcasts.
Rechlicz Welcomes Her New Staff
Head coach Kyle Rechlicz rounded out her staff in the offseason by naming Frank Goldsberry, Jessica Wilhite and Janese Banks as members of her coaching staff.
Goldsberry had served as the women's director of basketball operations and video coordinator at Dayton University since 2003 before adding the title of assistant director of compliance to his duties last season. Wilhite returned to her alma mater last year as video coordinator and remains with the staff in 2012-13 as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator. Banks spent last season as a graduate assistant at Auburn University, assisting in all aspects of the day-to-day operations of the women's basketball team.
More New Faces
Head coach Kyle Rechlicz welcomed some new faces to her support staff in the offseason as well. Gina Gonzales joins the staff as the Director of Basketball Operations, Latrell Fleming as the Video Coordinator and Haylie Linn as the Graduate Manager.
Gonzales comes from Missouri State University, where she spent last season as the Athletics Marketing Graduate Assistant. Fleming spent the past four seasons as a coach in the AAU ranks in the Milwaukee area and Linn recently wrapped up her collegiate career in 2011-12 at the University of Toledo.
The Panthers remain on the road to take on the first-place Green Bay Phoenix Saturday. Game time at the Kress Center is 7 p.m.