Women's Hoops Set To Host Season Opener With Gonzaga Sunday

Nov. 14, 2008

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GAME 1 - Sun., Nov. 16, 2008
Gonzaga (0-0) at Washington (0-0)
2 p.m. PT • Bank of America Arena • Seattle, Wash.

Radio: KKNW AM 1150 • TV: None
Internet: Live Stats/Radio/Video Broadcast at GoHuskies.com
Fans must purchase a Dawg Channel All-Access Pass for the live webcast

Up Next:
Washington women's basketball will make its official 2008-09 season debut hosting cross-state rival Gonzaga, Sunday, Nov. 16. The game will tip-off at 2 p.m. at Bank of America Arena. The contest marks the start of the 35th season of Husky women's hoops and the second under head coach Tia Jackson. Sunday's contest also marks the first time the Huskies have opened the season at home since the 2004-05 season. UW will have the luxury of playing four of its first five games of the year at home, but its first week will be a busy one. Starting Sunday, the Huskies will play their first three games in an eight-day span. Following its opener with Gonzaga, UW will travel to Ogden, Utah, to face Weber State on Wed., Nov. 19, before returning home to host Boise State, Nov. 23. Washington opened the season on a high-note, earning a pair of wins in its two exhibition tune-ups, defeating Love & Basketball, 77-73, and Corban College, 92-57.

Radio Coverage:
All Husky women's basketball games can be heard live on the radio at KKNW 1150 AM. Steve Sandmeyer, in his 10th season as the voice of UW women's hoops, will call the play-by-play. Former Husky Elise (Niemela) Woodward will join Sandmeyer as the color commentator for home broadcasts. Fan can also listen to games on the internet at GoHuskies.com.

Internet Coverage:
GoHuskies.com will feature live video and audio broadcasts of Sunday's game, but fans wishing to the view the video stream will need to purchase a Dawg Channel All-Access pass. Live statistics will also be available to GoHuskies.com.

Ticket Information:
Regular season reserved individual game tickets are $13 and subject to availability within reserved areas. General admission tickets are $6. Tickets are available online at GoHuskies.com, by calling 206-543-2200, in person at the Husky Ticket Office located on the first floor of the Graves Building or at the Bank of America Arena box office beginning one hour prior to each home game.

Season Ticket Open House:
Washington will hold a season ticket open house in conjunction with the Huskies' opener with Gonzaga, Sunday. Fans wishing to purchase season tickets can come early to the game to see first-hand where open season are located. Doors for open house participants will open at 12:15 p.m., followed by a Chalk Talk with Husky assistant coach Loree Payne. At 12:30 p.m. the arena will be open with available season seats tagged for fans to select the location they would like to reserve. For more information or to RSVP, contact Stacy Slade at sslade@ica.washington.edu.

Additional Gameday Promotions:
Free schedule magnets will be given out to fans at the door and select women's basketball players will be signing autographs in the Autograph Zone following the game.

Scouting The Huskies:
Led by second-year head coach Tia Jackson, the 2008-09 Husky women's basketball team returns seven players and one starter from last year's squad that finished the season with a 13-18 record and placed sixth in the Pac-10 with an 8-10 league mark. Welcomed to the fold will be eight newcomers including five freshmen, two junior college transfers and UCLA transfer Regina Rogers. Of the Huskies' seven returners, five are upperclassmen led by the senior duo of guard/forward Michelle Augustavo and forward Heidi McNeill. Junior guard/forward Sami Whitcomb is the squad's top returning scorer and rebounder as the Ventura, Calif., native turned in a breakout sophomore campaign that also saw her emerge as one of the top defensive players in the conference. Whitcomb, who started all but one game last year, averaged 11.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 2.0 steals, while being named an honorable mention selction to the Pac-10's inaugural Defensive Team. The other returning juniors include forward/center Laura McLellan and guard Sara Mosiman. Sophomore guard Sarah Morton and redshirt-freshman Mackenzie Argens, who missed nearly the entire 2007-08 season with a torn ACL, round out the group of seven. Among the newcomers to the Husky squad this year will be a trio of nationally ranked recruits in 6-1 forward Liz Lay (Oklahoma City, Okla.), 5-10 guard/forward Kristi Kingma (Mill Creek, Wash.) and 6-2 forward Mollie Williams (Cerritos, Calif.). Australian standout and 5-6 point guard Nicole Romeo could also challenge for early playing time, while local product Charmaine Barlow from Chief Sealth High School in Seattle round out the five true freshmen. Lydia Young, a 5-11 forward, and Christina Rozier, a 5-8 guard, hail from Detroit, Mich., and Miami, Fla., respectively, but were teammates at highly successful Southeastern Illinois Community College. The Huskies' other transfer, Rogers, had a strong freshman campaign at UCLA last year where she was named to the Pac-10 All-Freshman honorable mention team but will sit out 2008-09 due to NCAA transfer rules.

Season Openers:
Washington is 22-12 in season openers, having won five of the last seven. But the Huskies have lost the last two straight openers - 88-61 at Kansas State last year and 78-61 at Marquette in 2006-07. The last season opening win came at Alabama (56-52) in 2005-06. UW is 28-6 in home openers, riding a seven-game win streak in that category. The last time the Huskies lost a home opener was a 100-54 defeat at the hands of then-No. 1 Connecticut on Nov. 24, 2000, which happened to be the first game played in Bank of America after the extensive renovations to the building. Something new to UW this year will be opening the season AT HOME. Washington has opened the season at home just once in the last nine years. That contest came versus South Carolina during the 2004-05 campaign, a game won by the Huskies 65-53. UW is 10-1 when playing its regular season opener at home dating back to 1974-75.

Huskies Sweep Exhibition Games:
The Huskies emerged victorious in both of their exhibition contests, defeating Love & Basketball in overtime, 77-73, and cruising to a 92-57 win over Corban College. Freshman guard/forward Kristi Kingma made a name for herself early, averaging a team-high 15.5 points in the two contests helped by a team-high 22 against Corban College. Senior forward Heidi McNeill averaged a double-double of 11 points and 13 rebounds in the 'unofficial' games, emerging as UW's early leader on the boards. Senior guard/forward Michelle Augustavo (11.0) and junior guard/forward Sami Whitcomb (10.5) also averaged double-figure scoring numbers. It took overtime for UW to win its first exhibition over a squad made up of former collegiate players, but the Huskies prevailed. McNeill led the Huskies with 16 points and 14 rebounds. Against Corban College, a NAIA team from Salem, Ore., Washington dominated shooting nearly 50 percent from the field (47.9), while holding the Warriors to a 36.4 clip and forcing them to commit 32 turnovers. Kingma led UW with 22 points, while also adding seven rebounds and three steals in 23 minutes on the floor. McNeill had her second-straight double-figure rebounding day with 12 boards. Whitcomb and Augustavo both hit double-figures scoring with 12 and 10 points, respectively, and freshman forward Mollie Williams looked impressive with eight points, five rebounds, three blocks and three steals in 22 minutes.

Scouting Gonzaga:
The Bulldogs, who are receiving votes in both the AP and ESPN/USA Today/ESPN Coaches Polls, open their season at Eastern Oregon on Friday night before heading over to Seattle for Sunday's contest. The four-time defending West Coast Conference regular season champions return 80 percent of its offense from last year's team that finished 25-9 and made their fourth postseason appearance (WNIT) in the last five years. 2008 WCC Player of the Year Heather Bowman is currently out indefinitely after undergoing elbow surgery on Nov. 2. The 6-2 junior forward has also been named to the Preseason Wooden Award list. But the Zags' roster still boasts 2008 WCC Newcomer of the Year Courtney Vandersloot (SO G) and WCC Defensive Player of the Year Jami Schaefer (formerly Bjorklund, SR G). Gonzaga won both of its exhibition games defeating Whitman College 77-43 and Concordia, 94-32.

All-Time Series With Gonzaga:
Washington leads the all-time series with Gonzaga, 17-1. The Huskies had won 16-straight in the series before suffering their first-ever defeat to the Bulldogs in Spokane (72-91) last season. Then-sophomore Sami Whitcomb led UW with 16 points to go along with five assists, four rebounds and three steals. Then-junior Michelle Augustavo contributed 11 points on a trio of three-pointers. Forward Heather Bowman led the Zags with a game-high 21 points, including 16 in the second-half. The Huskies are 10-0 against Gonzaga when these teams meet in Seattle. The last time UW and Gonzaga met at Bank of America Arena was Dec. 15, 2006, a game won by the Huskies, 75-61.

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