Jan. 31, 2009
LSU Game Notes
AUBURN - The No. 5 Auburn women's basketball team (20-1, 5-1 SEC) will take on its second road challenge in a row Sunday as the Tigers travel to Baton Rouge, La., to take on LSU (11-7, 4-2 SEC). Tipoff for the game is slated for 2 p.m., at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.
Coming off the team's first loss of the season, Auburn head coach Nell Fortner said her team has to improve its mental toughness to get through this difficult stretch of the season.
"We just have to shoot the ball better, we were on the road against a very good team in a hostile environment, and we let a few things get to us. It affected our shooting and it affected our ability to execute on both ends of the floor," said Fortner. "We will definitely learn from this, and I think it was a great test for us. It was a situation where we really needed to be tougher mentally on the floor and we'll have to go back and use it to be tougher on the floor."
Heading to LSU, Auburn will play its second game in a row in a place where it has struggled in the past few years. The last win for the Tigers in Baton Rouge was eight years ago in a 65-62 victory on Feb. 4, 2001. Since then, Auburn has lost eight of the last nine meetings, including all four at the Maravich Center.
Fortner said it is difficult to get a win anytime you go on the road, especially in the SEC.
"It is tough in this league, it would be tough in any conference where you've got those conference rivalries, and you've got coaches who are experienced in this league and who know how tough it is for teams to play on the road," said Fortner. "Everybody tries to create the best home environment that they can, and rightly so. But, we will take this veteran team and go on the road again, and really actually look forward to the challenge of it after what happened to us on Thursday (at Georgia)."
LSU is a deceivingly difficult 11-7 team after playing a tough non-conference schedule that included Xavier, Florida State and No. 1-ranked Connecticut. LSU's 13-point loss to the Huskies is the second-closest win of the season for UConn as the only team that has played them closer was Georgia Tech in the season-opener with their 11-point loss.
LSU's two SEC losses have come at the hands of Vanderbilt (75-67) and Mississippi State (38-36), with the loss to the Bulldogs coming at the Maravich Center. Overall this season, LSU is 6-5 when playing at home.
LSU is a young team, but is led at the top by junior Allison Hightower with her 13.9 points and 4.4 rebounds per game. Freshman forward LaSondra Barrett is right behind her with 11.9 points and a team-best 5.8 rebounds. LSU head coach Van Chancellor has used a variety of lineups this season with 10 of the 12 players starting at least one game. Hightower is the only Tiger that has started all 18 games.
"LSU has tremendous talent, they are playing well right now. They've won three road games in the SEC, and I don't care who you are, it's tough winning on the road," said Fortner."They've got a tremendous guard in Allison Hightower. They've got big post players that are playing well, and it's going to be a tough game."
As a team, the Tigers are shooting 41.0 percent from the field while averaging 8.9 points per game more than their opponents. LSU tallies 8.4 steals and 5.0 blocks per game while forcing 17.2 opponent turnovers.
Auburn is led by SEC Preseason Player of the Year DeWanna Bonner, who put up 27 points and nine rebounds against the Bulldogs on Thursday. She currently leads the conference in scoring with 21.2 points per game while pulling down 8.6 boards per game.
The other half of Auburn's 1-2 punch is senior point guard Whitney Boddie and her SEC-best 7.9 assists per game. She also ranks in the top-30 in the league in scoring with 10.2 points per game and is fifth in steals with 2.5 per outing.
Auburn's 20-0 start was the second-longest undefeated run in the team's history, behind a 28-0 start to the 1988-89 season. Even with the loss to UGA, dropping the team to 20-1, it still marks the fifth-best start ever for an Auburn women's basketball team.
AU leads the all-time series with LSU, 26-14, and holds a narrow 9-8 advantage when playing in Baton Rouge.
Set to start at 2 p.m., the game against LSU will be broadcast locally in Louisiana on Cox Sports Television. Lyn Rollins and Victor Howell will call the game from the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.
Fans can also listen to the game on WMXA 96.7 in Auburn with Andy Burcham and Arnika Edwards calling the action. Live stats can be found at LSUSports.net.
Auburn is in its 38th season of women's basketball and sports an all-time record of 755-326... AU has made 17 NCAA Tournament appearances, two WNIT appearances and three Final Fours in the program's history... Head Coach Nell Fortner is in her fifth season at Auburn with a 108-65 career record and an 91-54 record on the Plains... The Tigers are coming off a 20-12 season in 2007-08 with their firs NCAA Tournament appearance since 2004.
This will be the 41st meeting between Auburn and LSU with AU holding a 26-14 series advantage. Auburn also holds the all-time advantage when playing in Baton Rouge (9-8), but LSU has dominated the series recently by winning the last five and eight of the last nine. UA has not beating LSU since a 68-50 victory at home on Feb. 8, 2004 and has not won in the Maravich Center since a 65-62 victory on Feb. 4, 2001. Head coach Nell Fortner owns a 0-5 record against the Tigers as Auburn's head coach.
LAST TIME VS. LSU
LSU continued its run of convincing Southeastern Conference wins with a 79-59 victory over No. 25 Auburn on Jan. 24, 2008, despite getting outscored in the second half.
Sylvia Fowles had 22 points and 10 rebounds and Quianna Chaney made six 3-pointers and had 21 points for the Lady Tigers. They shot 55 percent and led by 21 points at halftime.
Sherell Hobbs led Auburn with 20 points while Jordan Greenleaf added 12. DeWanna Bonner, the league's No. 2 scorer, managed just five points along with 10 rebounds. Bonner came in averaging 17 points but was held to 2-of-9 shooting by the nation's No. 2 scoring defense.
Nell Fortner VS. VAN CHANCELLOR
This will be the seventh meeting between Nell Fortner and LSU's Van Chancellor with Chancellor owning a 6-0 advantage. Only one of the meetings is at the collegiate level as Chancellor and Fortner met five times between 2001-03 in the WNBA. Fortner coached the Indiana Fever while Chancellor coached the Houston Comets. Fortner is in her fifth season at Auburn and sixth overall as a collegiate head coach, holding a 108-65 career record. Chancellor is in his 21st season as a college head coach and holds a 481-167 record.
LAST TIME OUT FOR LSU
Freshman forward LaSondra Barrett scored a game-high 19 points and grabbed seven rebounds as the LSU women's basketball team won its second straight Southeastern Conference road game, 63-56, over South Carolina on Jan. 29 at Colonial Life Arena.
Barrett reached double-figures for the eighth straight game and finished 7-of-11 from the field to go along with seven rebounds. Junior guard Allison Hightower chipped in 10 points and freshman forward Taylor Turnbow responded with 10 points off the bench in 18 minutes.
The Lady Tigers shot 44.8 percent for the game to South Carolina's 37.5 percent. LSU out-rebounded the Gamecocks, 39-29.
LAST TIME OUT FOR AUBURN
The Auburn women's basketball team struggled from the field and had no answer for Georgia's size as the No. 5 Tigers dropped their first game of the season, 67-58, Jan. 29 night to the Bulldogs. DeWanna Bonner led the Tigers with a game-high 27 points and nine rebounds. Georgia had four players finish in double figures, led by Angel Robinson with 17 points. Auburn shot 33.3 percent from the field, hitting only 21-of-63 attempts while the Bulldogs used a hot-shooting, 61.5 percent, second half to pull away and take the win.
Sherell Hobbs finished second to Bonner with 11 points in the game, all of which came in the second half. Trevesha Jackson and Boddie added six each.
Christy Marshall came off the bench and finished second for the Bulldogs with 15 points while Porsha Phillips and Angela Puleo followed with 10 each. Point guard Ashley Houts was held to only six points, but racked up 13 assists in the win.
For the game, Auburn out-rebounded Georgia 41-32 and turned the ball over less, 14-17. But, the 33.3 percent shooting held the Tigers back. Georgia shot 51.9 percent (28-of-54) for the game, including 5-of-12 three-point attempts.
NEXT UP FOR THE TIGERS
Auburn returns home on Feb. 5 for a 6 p.m. matchup against Ole Miss at the Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum.
AN OLYMPIC RING TO IT
Sunday's game against LSU will mark the fifth time this season that Auburn head coach Nell Fortner, who was head coach of the U.S. National Team at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, will face another Olympic coach. LSU head coach Van Chancellor served as the U.S. head coach at the 2004 Athens Olympics.
Others Auburn have faced this season include Tennessee's Pat Summitt (1984 Head Coach, 1980 Assistant Coach), North Carolina State's Kay Yow (1988 Head Coach, 1984 Assistant Coach), South Carolina's Dawn Staley (2008 Assistant Coach) and Ohio State's Jim Foster (1992 Assistant Coach). So far this season, Fortner is 4-0 against Olympic coaches.
Auburn senior point guard Whitney Boddie is one away from both a career plateau and a top-10 list. Boddie enters Sunday's game at LSU with 499 career assists, one away from becoming just the sixth player ever at Auburn to tally 500 career assists. She also enters the game with 169 career steals, one steal away from tying for 10th all-time at Auburn with Charlene Thomas and Tasha Hamilton in career steals.
Relying on the state of Alabama for its strength, Auburn is the only team in the AP top-25 whose entire starting lineup comes from its home state. The Tigers normally start Whitney Boddie (Florence, Ala.), DeWanna Bonner (Fairfield, Ala.), Sherell Hobbs (Huntsville, Ala.), Trevesha Jackson (Auburn, Ala.) and Alli Smalley (Arab, Ala.).
HANGING IN THE RAFTERS
Auburn sophomore Alli Smalley had her high school jersey retired at a ceremony at Arab (Ala.) High School on Friday, Jan. 16. Smalley, who wore No. 5 in high school, finished her career as the school's all-time leading scorer and is the first basktball player, male or female, to have their jersey retired. The ceremoney took place between the Arab vs. Ft. Payne girls' and boy's games.
ONE OF THE BEST
With a 20-1 record, the Auburn women's basketball team is off to one of the best start's in team history. The Tigers opened the season with 20 consecutive wins, the second-best undefeated run over for Auburn to open a season - finishing behind a 28-0 start by the 1988-89 Tigers. AU was one of the last two undefeated teams left in the country, along with Connecticut, who is still undefeated. Auburn was the last undefeated team in the Southeastern Conference this season.
QUICK START IN THE SEC
The Tigers are off to a 5-1 start in SEC play this season, one of their best starts ever in league play. Auburn has gone 5-1 on only seven other occasions in the team's history with the last coming in a 9-1 start to the 1992-93 season. This is the best start in SEC play for Auburn head coach Nell Fortner in her five-year tenure on the Plains.
IN GOOD COMPANY
Auburn senior DeWanna Bonner is currently ranked 11th in the nation in scoring with 21.2 points per game and 75th in the country in rebounding with 8.6 boards per game.
She is currently one of only six players in the nation to be ranked in the top 15 in scoring and top 100 in rebounding. The others are: Alysha Clark (MTSU), Angel McCoughtry (Louisville), Ashley Nicole Hayes (Murray State), Jantel Lavender (Ohio State) and Rachele Fitz (Marist).
A DUAL THREAT
The other half of the "Killer Bs" combo is senior point guard Whitney Boddie. She is in a select group of her own as she is ranked second in the nation in assists with 7.9 and 70th in steals with 2.5.
She is currently one of only six players in the country ranked in both the top-25 in assists and top-100 in steals, making her one of the biggest dual threats in the country. Others on the list are Andrea Riley (Oklahoma State), Danielle Robinson (Oklahoma), Nakeya Isabell (Pepperdine), Kristi Cirone (Illinois State) and Quenese Davis (San Diego State).
AUBURN IN SEC HOME OPENERS
The Auburn women's basketball team is 17-13 in SEC home openers, dating back to the 1979-80 season, after its 81-65 win over Florida. Auburn in SEC home-openers vs.: Alabama (0-1), Arkansas (1-0), Florida (1-1), Georgia (2-1), Kentucky (1-1), LSU (2-2), Ole Miss (1-3), Mississippi State (2-0), South Carolina (3-2), Tennessee (3-0) and Vanderbilt (1-2).
BREAKING THE STREAK
Auburn's 80-76 win over South Carolina was the team's first SEC-opening win since defeating Kentucky, 73-40, on Jan. 4, 2001. Auburn's record in SEC season-openers vs.: Mississippi State (4-0), South Carolina (2-0), Tennessee (2-1), LSU (2-4), Kentucky (1-3), Ole Miss (1-3), Vanderbilt (1-3) and Florida (0-3). The Tigers are now 13-17 overall.
COME ON IN
In Auburn's 82-68 win over No. 10 Tennessee, 12,067 fans came out to see the game - shattering the attendence record for a women's basketball game at the Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum. It also set a new record for attendence at any event in the current seating configuration at BEMC.
The record is also not limited to Auburn as it is the largest crowd to ever see a women's college basketball game in the state of Alabama. The crowd continued a trend this season as the Tigers have had three crowds (including the Florida and Alabama games) that rank in the top-25 all-time at Auburn.
RE-UNITING THE CHAMPS
Two Auburn staff members will be a part of a special presentation on Jan. 31 as members of the Purdue women's basketball team re-unite to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their 1999 NCAA Championship.
Assistant coach Kerry Cremeans served as an assistant to Carolyn Peck on the team that went 34-1. Video Coordinator Kelly Komara was a freshman on that team. She played in all 35 games, averaging 5.3 points and 2.5 rebounds per game.
PROTECT THIS HOUSE
In Auburn's eight home games this season, the Tigers have averaged scoring 90.2 points per game at home and average beating their opponents by 22.9 points per game.
AU defeated Temple, 95-76, in its home opener and followed up with an 87-80 overtime victory over then-No. 17 Ohio State. The Tigers then downed North Carolina A&T, 95-74 before scoring a school-record 119 points in a 119-54 win over Sam Houston State. Auburn then defeated Stephen F. Austin, 79-56 before picking up it second ranked win in an 81-65 victory over No. 18 Florida. Most recently, Auburn downed in-state rival Alabama, 84-66 before taking down defending national champion Tennessee, 82-68, in front of a record crowd of 12,067.
Since a 77-70 loss to Virginia on Jan. 5, 1992, the Auburn Tigers have compiled a 119-5 record against nonconference opponents in Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum. Overall, Auburn has a 336-65 record in its home facility for an 83.8 winning percentage.
OUTSIDE THE LEAGUE
Nell Fortner has guided the Tigers to a 59-15 ledger in non-conference play. When playing in Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum, Fortner's teams have posted a 23-3 mark. The only three non-conference losses in BEMC came from Xavier on Dec. 2, 2005 (58-60), No. 2 Duke on Dec. 31, 2004 (61-80) and No. 20 George Washington on Jan. 3, 2008 (68-66).
PICKING UP SOME CHARITY
While she struggled from the field in Auburn's 79-56 win over Stephen F. Austin, hitting only 4-of-12 shot attempts, senior Sherell Hobbs made good when she stepped up to the free-throw line, setting two Auburn records in the process.
Hitting all 11 of her attempts in the game, Hobbs tied Con Sparrow (1998) and Lori Nero (2000) for the Auburn record in free-throw percentage. All three went a perfect 11-of-11, Sparrow hitting the mark on Jan. 17, 1998 vs. Georgia while Nero did it on March 17, 2000 vs. Southwest Missouri State. Hobbs' mark also set a new Beard-Eaves-Memorial Coliseum record, breaking the mark of 9-of-9 set by Renae Halbrooks on Dec. 2, 1981 vs. Troy State.
ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS NO. 100
Auburn head coach Nell Fortner got a nice gift before the team broke for the Holidays. AU's 74-46 win at Coppin State on Dec. 21 was the 100th of her six-season career as a collegiate head coach. Five of Fortner's six seasons have come at Auburn with 17 of the wins coming from her one-year stint at Purdue. She was recognized for reaching the mark prior to Auburn's Jan. 11 game against Florida.
THE PLAINS 100
With 20 wins so far this season, head coach Nell Fortner is within striking distance of reaching another 100 plateau - her 100th win as Auburn's head coach. She currently has a 91-54 record on the Plains. With eight regular-season games remaining on the schedule, Fortner could reach the mark in the first round of the SEC Tournament, if the Tigers manage to win out.
AGAINST THE RANKED
Auburn holds a 3-0 record against teams ranked in the top-25 this season after its 87-80 overtime win over No. 17 Ohio State, 81-65 defeat of No. 18 Florida and 82-68 win over Tennessee. Auburn is now 87-144 all-time against ranked teams and 50-45 when playing at home.
Auburn barely saw its home court during the non-conference season, playing 10 of its 15 games either on the road or at neutral tournament sites.
IN THE RANKINGS
The Auburn women's basketball team is in its 11th week of the season ranked in both the AP Top-25 poll and the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Top-25 poll.
The Tigers are currently ranked fifth in the AP poll and fourth in the coaches poll. AU has been ranked fifth in the AP poll a total of 12 weeks since 1980 with the last coming on Jan. 5, 2000.
AU is currently ranked fourth in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll. It has been ranked fourth in the Coaches poll a total of 12 weeks since 1984 with the last coming on Dec. 6, 1993.
Three Tigers are currently ranked in the top-25 in the nation in a statistical category. Senior point guard Whitney Boddie is at the top of the list as she is ranked second in the nation in assists per game with 7.9. She also has one of the best assist-to-turnover ratios in the country, ranking fifth at 2.5. SEC Preseason Player of the Year DeWanna Bonner is also in the rankings, coming in at 11th in the nation in scoring with 21.2 points per game. Sophomore guard Alli Smalley is one of the top 3-point shooters in the country, ranking 19th with a .431 three-point shooting percentage.
As a team, Auburn is ranked in the top 25 in the nation in nine categories. The Tigers are fifth in scoring (79.5), third in field goal percentage (47.6), eighth in scoring margin (+18.8), 17th in assists per game (16.1), 25th in turnovers (15.0), 16th in turnover margin (+5.2), 14th in personal fouls per game (13.9) 10th in blocked shots per game (5.7) and 12th in assist-to-turnover ration (1.07).
GETTING THEIR SECOND WIND
One of the areas Auburn head coach Nell Fortner stressed in the off-season was conditioning and being able to out-last teams down the stretch. It has paid off as Auburn has dominated teams in the second half, averaging 10.95 points per game more in the second half.
On six occasions, the Tigers have turned a narrow or non-existant halftime lead into a blowout. Against Temple, AU was up by three at the break, but eneded with a 19-point victory. A halftime tie at UAB resulted in a 29-point Tiger win and a three-point advantage over North Carolina A&T at the half resulted in a 21-point victory.
Auburn took a one-point halftime deficit at Liberty and turned it into an 11-point win. At Miami, the Tigers took a two-point halftime deficit and turned it into a 15-point win. Most recently, Auburn bounced back after leading by just three at halftime against Alabama and pulled out an 18-point victory.
In all, Auburn has scored 860 second-half points, compared to 651 from its opponents.
DROPPING THE BANNER
Prior to the Nov. 23 87-80 overtime win over Ohio State, the Auburn women's basketball team dropped its NCAA Tournament banner from last seaosn. The Tigers went 20-12 during the 2007-08 campaign, making its first NCAA Tournament since 2004.
BREAKING INTO THE TOP-FIVE
After breaking into the top-5 in the Jan. 26 poll, the Auburn women's basketball team entered an area it had not been in for quite a while. The last time Auburn was ranked in the top five was Jan. 5, 2000 when the Tigers earned a No. 5 ranking with an 11-1 record.
LIGHTING UP THE BOARD
Auburn's 95-76 win over Temple was the second game in a row to score 90 or more points, something the team has not done since scoring 95 and 103 points against Alabama A&M and Northwestern State, respectively, on Dec. 29 and 30, 2003. Auburn did it for a second time this season, this time in back-to-back home games, scoring 95 points against North Carolina A&T and following it up with a school-record 119 points against Sam Houston State.
Prior to the record amount of 119 points, the 95 points were tied for the second-most scored in the Nell Fortner era, coming in behind a 99-point effort last season against Colgate (Dec. 5, 2007) and tied with a 95-point outing vs. Western Michigan (Nov. 25, 2006).
SETTING THE MARK
With Auburn's 119 points in the 119-54 win against Sam Houston State on Dec. 5, the Tigers set a new Auburn record for points in a game. It broke a 22-year-old record of 116 points, set on Dec. 2, 1986 (before anyone currently on the Auburn roster was born) with a 116-56 victory over Alabama State.
Auburn's 62 first-half points against Sam Houston State also came one point shy of the school record for first-half points. The record total of 63 points was set on Jan. 17, 1987 against Florida Southern.
SPREADING THE GAP
The 65-point victory over Sam Houston State (119-54) is the 12th-largest margin of victory ever at Auburn. It is biggest in the Nell Fortner era and the most since the Tigers downed Alabama A&M by 67 (95-28) on Dec. 29, 2003.
Senior point guard Whitney Boddie picked up the first triple-double of her career during the Dec. 5, 119-54 win over Sam Houston State. She posted 13 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds in the game.
She became just the second Auburn player ever, on either the men's or women's teams, to earn a triple double. The only other player to ever reach the feat was Marita Payne on Feb. 3, 2005 vs. Arkansas with 15 points, 12 rebounds and 13 blocks.
Auburn broke the 100-point barrier for the first time under head coach Nell Fortner in the team's 119-54 win over Sam Houston State. The last time AU broke 100 points was on Dec. 30, 2003 with a 103-52 win against Northwestern State.
CHASING THE RECORD
Auburn senior DeWanna Bonner is within reach of Auburn's all-time scoring record and could hit the mark during the regular season. Currently holding 1,891 career points, Bonner is chasing down Becky Jackson (1980-84) and her 2,068 career points. Needing 177 points to tie Jackson, Bonner would need to average 22.1 points per game in the remaining eight games on the schedule.
Making postseason play would make the feat easier as the average drops almost an entire point per game for each SEC or NCAA Tournament game the Tigers play.
AUBURN VS. THE SEC
Auburn is 167-138 all-time in Southeastern Conference Games. Head coach Nell Fortner holds a 29-34 record in the conference.
ON THIS DATE. . .
When playing on Feb. 1, Auburn has a 4-3 all-time record. The last time AU played on Feb. 1 was in 2007 with a 93-61 win over Alabama. Head coach Nell Fortner is 1-0 when playing on Feb. 1.
Auburn is 138-78 all-time in the month of February, including an 14-17 mark under Nell Fortner (records begin in 1978-79 season, not all dates provided prior to or during that season).
OFFENSE WINS GAMES
Auburn is 64-1 when scoring 70 or more points in the Nell Fortner era. The only time Auburn has lost when scoring at least 70 points was on Jan. 20, 2005 vs. No. 7 Tennessee, 71-81. When scoring less than 70 points, Auburn is 27-53 during the Fortner era.
TALLYING THE POINTS
With Auburn's 119 points against Sam Houston State on Dec. 5, it marked the fifth time this season for the Tigers to break the 90-point barrier - a first for the Nell Fortner era and the first time for AU since the 1999-2000 season.
It marks just the sixth season since 1971 for Auburn to put up at least five 90-point games. The most for Auburn in a single season is 14 games, coming during the 1986-87 season.
Two Tigers are currently leading the SEC in a statistical category this season. Senior DeWanna Bonner leads the conference in scoring with 21.2 points per game, leading Florida's Sha Brooks and her 14.8 points. Fellow senior Whitney Boddie leads the SEC in assists with 7.9 per game, leading Ole Miss' Shantell Black (5.3) by nearly three assists per game.
LAST OF THE UNBEATEN
Auburn's amazing 20-0 start to the 2008-09 season put it in exclusive company as one of the last two undefeated teams left in the country. Connecticut, who was the other team, is now the lone undefeated team. The undefeaed run for Auburn ended Jan. 29 at Georgia. The Tigers were the last team to hold an undefeated conference record after Vanderbilt's loss to Georgia on Jan. 22.
GETTING FREE BASKETBALL
Auburn's 87-80 overtime win over Ohio State was the Tigers' first overtime game in nearly two years. It is the first overtime game since defeating James Madison, 79-76, at the Miami Holiday Tournament on Dec. 28, 2006 and the first home overtime game since defeating Tulane, 75-64, on Jan. 5, 2002. Head coach Nell Fortner is now 2-2 all-time at Auburn in overtime games. Auburn is now 14-14 all-time in overtime games and 6-2 at home.
JOIN THE CLUB
With her 29 points against Temple, senior DeWanna Bonner hit exactly 1,500 career points, making her just the eighth Auburn player ever to reach the plateau.
Bonner is also one of only four Auburn players ever to post 1,500 points and 750 rebounds in their careers. The others are Becky Jackson, Vickie Orr and Marianna Merritt. Orr was the last Tiger to make both lists, finishing her Auburn career in 1989.
Fellow senior Sherell Hobbs joined an exclusinve club of her own as she logged the 1,000th point of her career at Georgia Southern. She is one of only 24 Auburn players ever to reach the 1,000-point plateau.
RENEWING HER MEMBERSHIP
Senior Sherell Hobbs joined another prestigious group of Auburn players during the Tigers' 65-51 win at George Washington. Her six rebounds in the game gave her exactly 500 on her career, making her the 17th player all-time at Auburn to tally 1,000 points and 500 rebounds in her career.
Auburn's fast-paced offensive does not just result in more points, but overflows onto the defensive end as the Tigers have averaged 10.9 steals per game in their 21 games this season, forcing 20.2 opponent turnovers per outing. AU has had double-digit steals in 12 of its 21 games.
Three current Tigers are also ranked among the most prolific theifs all-time at Auburn. Sherell Hobbs ranks sixth with 216 career steals while DeWanna Bonner is eighth with 195. Whitney Boddie is chasing down the list as well with 169 steals, needing just one more to make the list.
After tallying the 1,000th point of her career at Georgia Southern, Sherell Hobbs joined fellow senior DeWanna Bonner on the list of 24 Auburn players that have reached the plateau.
It marks the sixth time ever for two 1,000-point scorers to be in the same class. The others are Debra Larkin & Brenda Hill (Class of 1985), Mae Ola Bolton & Sharon Stewart (Class of 1988), Vickie Orr & Ruthie Bolton (Class of 1989), Monique Morehouse & Samantha Williams (Class of 1996) and Conswella Sparrow & Tiffany Krantz (Class of 2000).
AN EARLY FAVORITE
According to RealTimeRPI.com, the Auburn women's basketball team currently ranks eighth in the country in the Ratings Percentage Index that factors in strength of schedule and other factors into a computer ranking. As a conference, the SEC is ranked fourth on RealTimeRPI.com with the Big 12, Big East and ACC ahead of it.
LOOKING AHEAD. . . BRACKETOLOGY
Fresh off the team's first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2004 last season, the nationally-ranked Auburn Tigers are currently picked by ESPN's Charlie Creme to be a No. 2 seed in the 2009 NCAA Tournament in his Jan. 20 version of Bracketology. In the season-opening, Nov. 7, version of Bracketology, Auburn was picked as a No. 7 seed and in the Dec. 23 version, the Tigers were predicted as a No. 3 seed.
Creme has the Tigers projected to play 15-seed Sacred Heart in Piscataway, N.J. The winner would take on the winner of (7) Rutgers-(10) Purdue, according to his prognostication. Auburn is one of five SEC teams he has predicted for the tournament, including Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Florida and Mississippi State. Creme also picks Auburn to win the SEC's automatic bid to the tournament as the conference champion.
Once again this season, the Tigers roster boasts a pair of sisters in sophomore Reneisha Hobbs and senior Sherell Hobbs of Huntsville, Ala. Prior to last season, the last time an Auburn team featured sisters was 1988-89 when Mae Ola and Ruthie Bolton played together.
In Auburn's 91-62 win at UAB, Sherell and Reneisha not only played together in the game, but it marked the first time in their collegiate career that they both started in the game.
Fans this season will notice a large lineup for the Tigers - one that has an average height of 72.00 inches (or approximately 6-0). With 11 players on the roster, six are 6-0 and above. The tallest player on the team, KeKe Carrier, is also the tallest player in the SEC at 6-7.
SWEET HOME ALABAMA
The 2008-09 roster includes six members who call the state of Alabama home. Whitney Boddie (Florence), DeWanna Bonner (Fairfield), Reneisha Hobbs (Huntsville), Sherell Hobbs (Huntsville), Trevehsa Jackson (Auburn) and Alli Smalley (Arab) all hail from Alabama.
GREENLEAF SIDELINED FOR REST OF SEASON
Auburn junior Jordan Greenleaf suffered an injury to her ACL during practice on Dec. 4, 2008 and will miss the rest of the 2008-09 season. Greenleaf is expected to be able to redshirt this season.
HONORING KAY YOW
With the passing of legendary North Carolina State women's basketball coach Kay Yow on Jan. 24, the Auburn women's basketball team honored her by wearing "KAY YOW" shooting shirts prior to its game with Tennessee on Jan. 25 and again at Georgia on Jan. 29. The Auburn staff also wore pink ribbons.
Yow was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987 and died from the disease on Jan. 24, 2009. She posted a 737-344 career record and had coached the Wolfpack through most of the 2008-09 season. One of her last five games at N.C. State's head coach was against Auburn on Nov. 29. The Tigers won the game, 67-51.