No. 24 Old Dominion To Take On Tennessee Wednesday
By ODU Athletics
Dec. 3, 2007
ABOUT THE LADY MONARCHS: The Lady Monarchs are back in the polls after opening the season 6-2 with two wins over ranked teams and both losses occurring against the nation's top 10. Old Dominion is fresh off a BIG 10 sweep which saw the Lady Monarchs defeat then No. 20/22 Purdue (66-53), Penn State (77-49), and most recently, then No. 20/19 Michigan State (79-73). Senior T.J. Jordan continues to lead the Lady Monarch in scoring averaging 16.9 points per game. Two other Lady Monarchs are averaging double figures in senior starter Megan Pym and sophomore Jessica Canady, who is coming off the bench. Both are averaging 10.5 points per game. On the boards, junior Tiffany Green leads the rebounding corps at 7.3 rebounds per game.
ABOUT TENNESSEE: Tennessee, the 2007 NCAA Champions and fresh off a 83-79 win over North Carolina, will enter the game at a perfect 6-0 mark. Junior Candace Parker leads the Lady Vols at 22.5 points per game followed by seniors Alexis Hornbuckle at 11.5 points per game and Shannon Bobbitt at 10.7. Parker also leads Tennessee in rebounding collecting 10.2 boards per game. The Lady Vols are under the direction of Pat Summit, who in her 34th season at Tennessee has compiled a staggering 953-180 overall record.
COMPARE AND CONTRAST:
ODU - TENN
71.2 - Scoring - 78.2
.407 - Field Goal Percentage - .450
.339 - 3PT Field Goal Percentage - .352
.624 - Free Throw Percentage - .689
39.1 - Rebounds Per Game - 41.5
15.8 - Assists Per Game - 18.5
19.5 - Turnovers Per Game - 19.2
13.3 - Steals Per Game - 13.3
4.4 - Blocks Per Game - 8.0
SERIES WITH TENNESSEE: Old Dominion has only faced CAA rival James Madison more times than it has the Tennessee Lady Vols. Wednesday's meeting will mark the 41st meeting between the two teams with the Lady Vols holding a 31-9 advantage in the all-time series as they have shared an annual game each season since the 1976-77 season. Old Dominion is looking for its first win over Tennessee in its last eleven attempts. The last Lady Monarch win over the Lady Vols came in 1997 with an 83-72 regular season victory at the ODU Fieldhouse. Later that season in the NCAA Championship game, the roles were reversed as Tennessee walked away with the title. Old Dominion has not won in Knoxville since 1982 when the Lady Monarchs used overtime for a 78-72 win and has not won at home since the 1997 regular season win.
LAST TIME VS. TENNESSEE: Candace Parker had 32 points and 10 rebounds and then- No. 5 Tennessee overcame a stiff defensive test from longtime rival Old Dominion on Dec. 22, 2006, beating the Lady Monarchs for the 11th consecutive time, 75-59. Parker, who made history in Norfolk the previous season when she dunked twice in an NCAA tournament game against Army, entered the game with three dunks this season, but was booed by the crowd when she passed on a chance for another one late in the first half. Tennessee (11-1) won its fourth in a row since a 13-point loss at second-ranked North Carolina on Dec. 3. It improved to 31-9 in its history against Old Dominion. The Lady Monarchs (3-7) lost for the fifth time in six games. Sherida Triggs led the Lady Monarchs with 13 points, and T.J. Jordan had 11, all in the first half. Old Dominion forced 18 turnovers, but committed 24. Tennessee led 38-33 at halftime and didn't move comfortably in front until Parker's three-point play and jumper sparked an 11-2 run to give the Lady Vols a 58-45 lead. Parker was 12-for-18 from the field and 8-for-8 at the foul line. The Lady Monarchs closed within 10 twice shortly thereafter, but Tennessee finally pulled away, using a significant height advantage and more depth to wear out ODU. Shannon Bobbitt added 13 points and Alexis Hornbuckle 10 for Tennessee. The game drew a crowd of 7,108, the third-largest for a women's game at the Constant Convocation Center. The largest - 7,758 - also came for Tennessee on Jan. 7, 2003, the year the arena opened. Before the game, Tennessee coach Pat Summitt took part in a ceremony to present Old Dominion coach Wendy Larry with the game ball from her 500th career victory, which came Dec. 9 against Chicago State. The Lady Vols scored the last five points of the first half to lead 38-33. The last two came on a steal and breakaway layup by Parker, who drew boos when she didn't dunk. The game was tied at 31-31 with 1:31 left in the first half.
HELLO TOP 25: The Lady Monarchs returned to the Top 25 in the Associated Press Poll for week four following their upset victory over Michigan State. Old Dominion is ranked at No. 24 and makes its first appearance in the AP Poll since the final poll of the 2002 season when the Lady Monarchs finished 15th and advanced to the Elite Eight of the NCAA Tournament.
WAY TO START: The Lady Monarchs have opened the 2007-08 season with a 6-2 overall mark. Among the six victories are wins over two ranked teams in Purdue and Michigan State as well as conference champions from the Sun Belt (Middle Tennessee) and Conference USA (East Carolina). Both losses happened against team ranked in the top four at the time of play - UConn & Stanford. It is the best start for the Lady Monarchs since the 1999-2000 season when Old Dominion opened up the year 7-1.
THREE IN A ROW AGAINST THE BIG 10: Old Dominion made it back-to-back-to-back victories over the BIG 10. The Lady Monarchs returned from a 66-53 upset win over then No. 22/20 Purdue at the Paradise Jam in St. Thomas, only to return home to see two more BIG 10 squads. Old Dominion then proceeded to down Penn State, 77-49, and upset then No. 19/20 Michigan State, 79-73.
HEIR JORDAN: Senior guard T.J. Jordan led Old Dominion to a pair of victories over Penn State and No. 20/19 Michigan averaging 19.0 points and 4.0 assists per game to be named the Colonial Athletic Association Co-Player of the Week for the week ending December 2. It was the Lady Monarchs first weekly conference award of the year. After the Lady Lions held Jordan scoreless in the first half, she lit up the court for 14 second half points to end as the game's leading scorer. Jordan's 14 points helped her surpass the 1,200 career point mark. She followed with a game-high 24 points in ODU's upset over #19/20 Michigan State. It was her second 20 + point effort of the season and 14th of her career. Jordan leads Old Dominion averaging 16.9 points per game
20/20: Old Dominion had two score 20 or more points in the upset win over Michigan State. Senior guard T.J. Jordan led all scorers with 24 points in her second 20+ point performance of the year and the 14th of her career. Junior forward/center Tiffany Green posted 20 points to tie her career mark. Green also poured in 20 points against CAA rival William & Mary her freshman year in January of 2005.
CAN'T KEEP A GOOD LADY MONARCH DOWN: Penn State managed to keep Old Dominion leading scorer T.J. Jordan from hitting a bucket in the first half, but Jordan got revenge in half number two. The senior guard lit up the floor for a game-high 14 points all coming in the second half of action.
OPPONENT HIGH, ODU LOW: Penn State turned the ball over 30 times resulting in 28 points in the Lady Monarchs' 77-49 victory over the Lady Lions. The 30 turnovers were the most for an ODU opponent this season. Conversely, the Lady Monarchs committed only 12 turnovers, a season low for the team.
GREENING UP THE ROSTER: Freshman Shadasia Green, not to be confused with the other Green in senior Tiffany Green, posted some of her highest numbers of the season in the victory over Penn State. Green tied her high in points with eight, field goals made with four, field goals attempted with five, and minutes played with 13. She also stole the ball three times for another career mark.
BEEN AWHILE...: Old Dominion met up with some foes they haven't' seen for awhile at the Paradise Jam in St. Thomas over Thanksgiving...but sure do have some memories from the last time they played. The first game featured Connecticut and was the first the Lady Monarch took on the Huskies since the 2002 Elite Eight match-up. When Old Dominion took the court for the second game of the tournament, it was the first time the Lady Monarchs and Stanford faced each other since the thrilling over time national semifinal game in 1997. With Purdue in the third game, it marked the first time 2002 Old Dominion faced the Boilermakers since it's upset over second-seeded and host Purdue in the second round of the NCAA Tournament in 2002.
ALL-TOURNAMENT TIME: It's not the post-season just yet, but already one Lady Monarch has been named to an all-tournament team. Senior guard T.J. Jordan averaged 13.3 points in games against #2/2 Connecticut, #4/4 Stanford, and #22/20 Purdue to earn a spot on the Paradise Jam All-Tournament Team. Jordan led Old Dominion in scoring with 13 against the Huskies and 17 points against the Boilermakers and also poured in 10 points versus the Cardinal.
NO PAIN, NO GAIN: Coming off a sprained ankle in the meeting with No. 2/2 Connecticut in the first game at the Paradise Jam, senior Megan Pym rebounded by collecting her first career double-double against No. 4/4 Stanford in the tournament. Pym poured in a career-tying 12 points along with 10 rebounds, on board shy of her career mark. It was also Pym's 100th game as a Lady Monarch
TAKE ME TO YOUR LEADER: Jen Nuzzo has always been regarded as one of the Lady Monarch leaders and it certainly showed against No. 4/4 Stanford in the second game at the Paradise Jam. Nuzzo, a junior point guard, set a new career mark with 14 points, also marking the first time in her career she led ODU in scoring. In the following game against Purdue, Nuzzo reached double figure scoring again, this time added in 10 points.
STARTING ON THE RIGHT FOOT: Old Dominion opened the season with three consecutive wins for the first time since the 1998-1999 season. That season the Lady Monarchs opened the year with five straight wins en-route to the Sweet 16. The five wins came against Marshall, No. 8/12 Teas Tech, No. 10 N.C. State, and Southern California and Southwest Missouri State in the Torneo Cancun de Basquetboll Tournament. The streak came to end in a setback to No.6/7 Alabama in the Wachovia Women's Classic.
WRITING HER NAME INTO HISTORY: Senior guard T.J. Jordan managed to find to more places to put her name in the Old Dominion record books in the Lady Monarchs' 80-59 victory over Charlotte. With a game-high 28 points, Jordan broke the ODU record for most points scored by a Lady Monarch at the Ted Constant Convocation Center. The previous record of 27 points was held by Max Nhassengo against Hofstra on Feb. 24, 2004. Additionally with her six three-pointers made, she became the ODU recorder holder for three-pointers made in a career, surpassing Aubrey Eblin's (1995-1999) former mark of 250. Jordan currently has 259 made shots from downtown in her career.
DISH IT TO ME: Junior guard Jazzmin Walters dished out a career-high 12 assists in ODU's 88-66 victory over East Carolina, while committing no turnovers. The 5-2 guard recorded five steals as well in the victory. Last season, Walters finished seventh on the sophomore assist leaders list with 100 dishes.
NO SOPHOMORE SLUMP: Jessica Canady shined in the first three Lady Monarch games of 2007-08 season debut. Against Middle Tennessee in the season and home opener, the lone ODU sophomore came off the bench and played a career-high 23 minutes. Netting a then career-high 13 points, she also added three steals and three blocks. Canady did not have to wait much longer to reset her career mark in points as she lead all scorers with 18 in ODU's victory at East Carolina. Returning home to host Charlotte, the second year Lady Monarch posted new career marks in steals (4) and minutes played (28). Against No. 4 Stanford, Canady reset her career mark in rebounds hauling in eight against the Cardinal. To date, she is averaging a team second-best 10.5 points per game.
MOVING ON UP: With 19 points against the Blue Raiders in the season opener against Middle Tennessee on Nov. 10, senior guard T.J. Jordan moved into 21st on the all-time Old Dominion scoring leaders list. With her 14 points against Penn State in a 77-49 victory Jordan surpassed the 1,200 point mark. She currently has with 1,229 career points.
HOME COURT STREAK: The Lady Monarchs have won 14 straight home contests dating back to the Dec. 20, 2006, 72-55, victory over national runner-up Rutgers, ODU's last loss at the Ted Constant Convocation Center was against national champion Tennessee, 59-75, back on Dec. 22, 2006.
FREE POINTS: Old Dominion went to the line 35 times against Middle Tennessee in the season opener, sinking 27 shots and shooting 77.1 percent from the charity stripe. Two Lady Monarchs showed that working on free throws over the summer can certainly pay off. Junior Tiffany Green,who hit only 51 percent a year ago from the line, went 8-of-9 and senior Shahida Williams, who connected for just 49 percent last season, netted 5-of-6. Also sinking shots from the free throw line against the Blue Raiders was senior T.J. Jordan, who went 6-of-7.
REJECTED: The Old Dominion women's basketball team collected 12 blocks against Middle Tennessee on Nov. 10 to set a new team record at the Ted Constant Convocation Center. The previous record of 11 occurred against East Carolina on Nov. 21, 2006 and conference rival UNC-Wilmington on Feb. 24, 2005. Senior Shahida Williams and junior Tiffany Green led the rejections with four apiece. Williams set a new career mark in the block category while sophomore Jessica Canady tied her career mark with three swats.
IN THE POLLS: The 2007-08 Old Dominion women's basketball team received votes in the ESPN/USA Today Women's Basketball Preseason Poll and moved up to to receiving votes in both national polls following the first week of action. Old Dominion's last Top 25 ranking in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' Poll was November 18th, 2003. Old Dominion's last appearance in the Associated Press Top 25 was the final poll of the 2002 season as the Lady Monarchs danced their way to the "Elite Eight".
RANK `EM UP - ESPN/USA TODAY POLL: The Lady Monarchs will be taking on six teams ranked among the nation's top 25 in the ESPN/USA Today Women's Basketball Preseason Poll. Among the teams the Lady Monarchs will take on include three teams in the poll's top ten in No. 1 Tennessee, No. 2 Connecticut, and No. 8 Stanford. Other upcoming Lady Monarch opponents include No. 17 Vanderbilt, No. 18 Michigan State, and No. 20 Purdue. Old Dominion opponents receiving votes in the preseason poll include Middle Tennessee, who will serve as the Lady Monarchs season and home opener on November 10th, as well as Kentucky.
RANK `EM UP - AP POLL: The Lady Monarchs will be taking on five teams ranked among the nation's top 25 in the Associated Press Women's Basketball Preseason Poll. Among the teams the Lady Monarchs will take on include three teams in the poll's top ten in No. 1 Tennessee, No. 2 Connecticut, and No. 7 Stanford. Other upcoming Lady Monarch opponents include No. 17 Michigan State and No. 23 Vanderbilt Old Dominion opponents receiving votes in the preseason poll include Middle Tennessee, Kentucky, and Purdue. .
WELCOME TO THE TED: Since the doors opened at the Ted Constant Convocation Center in 2002, the Lady Monarchs have enjoyed a 68-12 record.
Ranked Wins At The Constant Center:
11/25/03 - #7 Penn State - W, 75-68
12/7/03 - #12/13 UNC - W, 73-68
12/5/04 - #16/19 Rutgers - W, 69-61
2/25/07 - #22/25 James Madison - W, 62-57
12/2/07 - #20/19 Michigan State - W, 79-73
Losses At The Constant Center:
11/22/02 - Virginia - L, 55-63
1/7/03 - #5 Tennessee - L, 63-91
1/31/03 - Rutgers - L, 59-67
3/22/03 - Boston College (NCAA) - L, 72-73
1/2/05 - #8 Tennessee - L, 58-68
1/9/05 - Delaware - L, 70-73
11/20/05 - #1/2 Duke - L, 56-93
12/4/05 - #19/20 Vanderbilt - L, 77-82
12/29/05 - #5 North Carolina - L, 80-88 (OT)
3/19/06 - George Washington (NCAA) - L, 72-87
11/18/06 - #21/24 Kentucky - L, 55-69
12/22/05 - #5 Tennessee - L, 59-75
TOP WBB ATTENDANCE AT THE CONSTANT CENTER
1. Tennessee 1/7/03 - 7,758
2. Virginia 11/22/02 - 7,316
3. Tennessee 12/22/06 - 7,108
4. Tennessee 1/2/05 - 7,063
5. George Washington (NCAA) 3/19/06 - 6,847
6. Rutgers 1/31/03 - 6,384
PRESEASON AWARDS: Senior guard T.J. Jordan was a Preseason First Team All-CAA selection for the second consecutive year. Jordan, a two-time CAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player, averaged a team-leading 14.5 points per game and nearly rewrote every three-point record in the ODU history books. Junior Tiffany Green was named to the Preseason Second Team All-CAA list. Green will be the Lady Monarchs returning leading rebounder as she hauled in 6.0 a year ago along with 8.4 points per game.
CAA PRESEASON POLL - WE'RE #1: Old Dominion, which has captured the past 16 Colonial Athletic Association women's basketball titles, was picked to repeat as conference champion in 2007-08 according to a vote of the league's coaches, sports information directors and media. The Lady Monarchs, who posted their 16th consecutive 20-win season last year, were followed in the voting by James Madison, William & Mary, VCU and Delaware. Picked sixth was Towson, followed by Hofstra, Drexel, Georgia State, Northeastern, UNC Wilmington, and George Mason.
HI MOM - I'M ON TV!: Seven Lady Monarch games will be aired, beginning on Nov. 23 with a Comcast Sportsnet broadcast with nationally ranked Connecticut from the Virgin Islands on tape delay at 11 p.m.. Old Dominion's conference games at Georgia State on Jan. 6, at Delaware on Jan. 27, and at James Madison on Mar. 2 will also be aired on Comcast Sportsnet, available on channel 35 in the Hampton Roads area. Lady Monarch games with Penn State on Nov. 29, James Madison on Jan. 13, and William and Mary on Feb. 10 will be available on WSKY-4. John Castleberry will provide the play by play along with former Lady Monarch and ODU Hall of Famer Jan Trombly on color for all the WSKY games.
SO WE MEET FOR THE FIRST TIME: The only team on the 2007-08 schedule the Lady Monarchs have never faced is Michigan State. The Spartan come to Norfolk on Dec. 2.
SO WE MEET AGAIN: The Lady Monarchs continue annual rivalries with Tennessee and Penn State while taking on Middle Tennessee, East Carolina, Delaware State, and Kentucky for the second straight season. It marks the third straight season ODU and Charlotte will meet on the hardwood while the Lady Monarchs return a game to Vanderbilt from the 2005-06 season.
THINK PINK: The annual HOOPS FOR A CURE game is slated for Feb. 10 against CAA rival William & Mary.
UP NEXT: Old Dominion returns home to host Delaware State at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, December 20th.