Game 19 WBB Notes: #25 Ohio State at Illinois
Jan. 19, 2011
GAME 19 - #25/RV OHIO STATE (11-6, 2-3) AT ILLINOIS (7-11, 2-3)Thursday, Jan. 20, 2011 // 7 p.m. CT // Assembly Hall (16,618) // Champaign, Ill.
ON THE AIR
Seeing Double: Sophomore forward Karisma Penn has posted 11 double-doubles so far this season to lead the Big Ten and rank third in the nation. She got back on track with 15 points and 13 rebounds Sunday at Penn State after two straight games without a double-double.
All-Around Player: Illinois' Karisma Penn is the only player in the conference that ranks in the top-five in scoring, rebounding, blocks and steals. Entering Thursday's game versus Ohio State, the Shaker Heights, Ohio, native is fifth in the conference in scoring (16.6 ppg), second in rebounding (10.5 rpg), second in blocks (2.6 bpg) and third in steals (2.3 spg). She also ranks 11th in the Big Ten in FG percentage, while her 10.5 boards per game is good for 19th in the nation.
Moore's Swagger is Back: Redshirt freshman Amber Moore has been on fire as of late, prompting coach Jolette Law to say that Moore has her "swagger" back. Moore hit seven threes last Thursday at Indiana, equaling the second most in a game in school history behind only Katie Coleman's school-record of nine in 1997. Moore has hit 14-of-31 (.452) from behind the arc in the last three games and ranks second in the Big Ten in three-pointers made per game during conference play (3.2).
Bench Production: The Fighting Illini bench has come up big all season, particularly as of late. In the last three games, the UI bench has outscored the opposing benches 124-55. Against Northwestern on Jan. 9, the Illinois bench outscored the NU reserves 46-5, then on Jan. 13 at Indiana, the UI bench scored a season-high 48 points, followed by 30 points at Penn State. Amber Moore (54 points) and Adrienne GodBold (34 points) have led the way during that three game stretch. For the season, Illinois' reserves are outscoring the opposing bench by an average of 23.9-15.1.
Free Throw Turnaround: Illinois appears to have turned around its early season free throw shooting woes. Through 12 games, the Illini ranked last in the Big Ten at 61.4 percent. However, they've knocked down 87-of-119 (73.1 percent) from the line over the last six games to lift their season average to 65.7 percent. The Illini have also had their two highest totals of FT attempts in the last two games, getting to the line a season-high 27 times at Indiana and then 24 times at Penn State.
SCOUTING THE BUCKEYES
The Buckeyes are led by senior All-American post Jantel Lavender (23.5 ppg, 11.4 rpg), the three-time defending Big Ten Player of the Year. Junior guard Samantha Prahalis (14.5 ppg, 6.4 apg), sophomore guard Tayler Hill (12.2 ppg, 5.1 rpg) and senior guard Brittany Johnson (10.1 ppg, 3.6 rpg) are all experienced vets. Senior forward and regular starter Sarah Schulze is likely out with a knee injury suffered in Sunday's game versus Michigan State.
The Illinois-OSU Series: Ohio State owns a 42-17 advantage in the all-time series and a slim 12-14 edge in Champaign. The Buckeyes have won six-straight against the Illini, including three wins last season. The last Illini victory over OSU was in the 2008 Big Ten Tournament, when the ninth-seeded Illini upset the top-seeded Buckeyes 64-58. The two teams have met in the Big Ten Tournament three straight seasons, with the Illini winning in 2008 and the Buckeyes winning in 2009 and 2010.
LAST TIME VS. THE BUCKEYES
Jenna Smith had 13 points and 11 rebounds to become both the Big Ten Tournament's career rebounding leader and the Illinois single-season rebounding record holder. The Illini cut a nine-point halftime deficit to four, 33-29, with five quick points to start the second half. However, the Buckeyes responded with a 20-8 run to push their lead out to 53-37 with 9:47 remaining.
The Illini wouldn't go quietly though, as they would go on a 12-2 run to close within 57-51 at the 5:03 mark. After a stop on the defensive end, the Illini had two great looks to cut the lead even more, but a three-pointer by Smith and a long jumper by Lacey Simpson were both off the mark. Ohio State's Jantel Lavender then hit a bucket on the other end to push it back to an eight point UI deficit and the Illini would get no closer from that point on.
ILLINOIS VS. RANKED OPPONENTS
PENN FILLING BIG SHOES
Stat Penn '10-11 Smith '07-08 Points per game 16.6 18.3 Rebounds per game 10.5 9.4 Blocks per game 2.6 1.7 Steals per game 2.3 1.1 Field Goal Percentage .485 .503 Minutes per game 33.2 37.3 Block Party: Penn is already climbing up the UI career blocks list. After breaking the UI freshman record with 57 swats last year, Penn has added 47 this season to bring her career total to 104. She currently sits sixth on the UI career blocks list and has already cracked the top-eight on the single season list.
Penn POW: Penn picked up her second Big Ten Player of the Week accolade of the season on Jan. 3 after averaging 19.7 points, 12.0 rebounds, 4.3 steals and 2.7 blocks in three games from Dec. 27-Jan. 2. She also took home co-Player of the Week honors on Dec. 20 after going for 16 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocks in Illinois' win over UIC at the United Center on Dec. 18.
MAGRUM OUT FOR SEASON
THE FIGHTING ILLINI ARE...
WHERE ARE THE SENIORS?
LAST TIME OUT: LIONS SHOOT DOWN ILLINI
PSU hit 8-of-16 from behind the arc in the first half, equaling the season high against the Illini for a full game entering the day. The hosts would get even hotter in the second half, hitting all four of their threes to finish with 12 for the game, tied for the third-most against the Illini in school history.
Karisma Penn had her Big Ten-leading 11th double-double of the season with 15 points and 13 rebounds, and also added three steals and a block. Amber Moore, who was coming off a seven three, 27-point performance at Indiana, finished with 10 points and five assists, but was just 3-of-13 from the field and 2-of-10 from downtown