Ashley Garfield ranks third on the team in rebounds. (Photo by BYU Photo/Todd Wakefield)
Riding a seven-game winning streak, BYU women’s basketball (7-0) takes another road trip this week. The team travels to Omaha to take on Creighton (4-3) on Saturday, Dec. 7 at 2 p.m. CST. Fans can follow the action live on BYU Radio.
The 7-0 start to the 2013-14 season is the team’s best start since the 2005-06 campaign when they went 8-0 before losing a home game to NC State.
BYU has four players scoring in double figures while averaging 74 points per and holding opponents to 63 points. The Cougars have recorded more blocks than opponents in all games and have dished out more assists in six of the seven contests played to date.
BYU returns nine letterwinners and two starters from last year’s team that had a 23-11 record, finished tied for third in the West Coast Conference and competed for the second straight year in the postseason WNIT.
In the coaches’ preseason poll, BYU was picked to finish fourth in the WCC regular season race behind San Diego, Saint Mary’s and league favorite Gonzaga. Senior center Jennifer Hamson was named to the preseason all-conference team, her second such honor.
• Head coach: Jeff Judkins (Utah, ‘78) enters his 13th season
• Team’s leading scorer: #5 Jennifer Hamson, 18.3 ppg
• Team’s leading rebounder: #5 J. Hamson, 9.4 rpg
• Team’s assists leader: #4 Kim Beeston, 4.4 apg
• Team’s steals leader: #4 Beeston, 1.7 spg
• Team’s blocks leader: #5 Hamson, 3.6 bpg
Creighton University is 4-3 on the season recording wins over South Dakota State, Minnesota, Houston and South Dakota. They have a perfect 4-0 mark at home.
The Bluejays are averaging 62 points per game and grabbing 34 rebounds. Creighton finished last year with a 25-8 record advancing to the second round of the NCAA tournament. Nine letterwinners are back including four starters.
Creighton was picked to finish second in their first year competing in the Big East Conference.
• Head coach: Jim Flanery (Creighton, 1987) 11 seasons
• Team’s leading scorer: #23 Marissa Janning, 17.0 ppg
• Team’s leading rebounder: #23 M. Janning, 5.4 rpg
• Team’s assists leader: #23 Janning & #42 Sarah Nelson, 4.0 apg
• Team’s steals leader: #23 Janning & #42 Nelson, 1.3 spg
• Team’s blocks leader: #50 B. Rollerson & #55 A. Kamphaus, 1.4 bpg
The series is tied, 6-6. When playing in Omaha, BYU is 0-5. The last time they met in Omaha was during the 1991-92 season when both team’s competed in the Western Athletic Conference. In that game, Creighton won 92-63.
Most Recent Meeting
These two teams played last year at Energy Solutions Arena on Nov. 28, 2012 where Creighton came from behind to record the 65-62 overtime win.
After a 16-point BYU lead entering the second half, Creighton hit six 3-pointers to cut the Cougars’ advantage to five with 3:10 to play in regulation. A layup and three-point play tied the contest at 54 with just over two minutes to go. Xojian Harry knocked in a jumper, but the Bluejays followed with a layup for a 56-56 tie. Neither team managed to score in the last 20 seconds.
The overtime period featured more back-and-forth scoring, with each team taking the lead at some point. Lexi Eaton was perfect from the charity stripe for a 61-59 BYU advantage with 2:05 remaining. After another tie game, Creighton’s Sarah Nelson sunk the game-winning 3-pointer with 19 seconds left. Both teams made their final points from the free throw line for the final 65-62 score favoring the Bluejays.
After the game at Creighton, the team takes one last short trip during its nonconference schedule. BYU will be in Ogden taking on Weber State on Tuesday, Dec. 10 at 7 p.m. The Wildcats are the first of three in-state foes that follow for the Cougar women.
BYU will host the University of Utah on Saturday, Dec. 14 and Utah State on Dec. 21 to round out its nonconference portion of the 2013-14 schedule.