---Karyn Creager is closing in on another NKU free-throw record. The senior from Leipsic, Ohio, has made 20 consecutive free throws and needs to hit her next eight to shatter her own school record of 27.

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. - The last time Northern Kentucky University played St. Rose (N.Y.) in women's basketball, a trip to the NCAA Division II national semifinals was at stake.

That was during the 2000 NCAA Division II Elite Eight at Pine Bluff, Ark., and NKU knocked off then-No. 1 and unbeaten St. Rose en route to the national championship. Nearly seven years later, those two teams will meet again on a neutral court. This time the Norse and Golden Knights meet in Lakeland, Fla., at the Florida Southern Classic, which begins Thursday at 5:30 p.m. with a rematch of the 2000 national quarterfinals.

NKU is 5-3 overall and ranked 17th nationally in the Division II poll. St. Rose is 9-2 and ranked No. 22 nationally in Division II.

NKU will also meet regional opponent Mercyhurst (Pa.) at 2 p.m. Friday to conclude the two-day event. Both games can be heard live on WIOK (107.5 FM) and on the Internet at athletics.nku.edu.

NOT-SO-GRAND TIME: NKU is coming off a 74-58 loss to Grand Valley State in the Travel America Classic in Regents Hall. Grand Valley State shot 62.5 percent from the field in the first half to build a 38-22 lead, and NKU was unable to generate any kind of rally after the break.

Brittany Winner led NKU with 13 points, six rebounds and four assists. Angela Healy and Karyn Creager each added 10 points for NKU. Nicole Chiodi scored eight points, while Danyelle Echoles came off the bench and finished with seven points.

WHO WILL GET THERE FIRST?: Angela Healy extended her consecutive made free-throw streak to 19, eight shy of tying Karyn Creager's school-record 27 straight makes. Creager, however, has made 20 consecutive from the line and is looking to break her own record, which she set two years ago. For the season, Healy is 21-for-22 at the line (.955). Creager is 28-for-32 (.875), while teammate Karmen Graham is 17-for-18 (.944).

A WINNER WONDERLAND: NKU senior forward Brittany Winner scored 27 points and grabbed 12 rebounds during the Travel America Classic to earn all-tournament honors. The Minster, Ohio, native leads NKU in scoring at 11.6 points per contest. She was 3-of-6 from long range and a perfect 4-for-4 from the free-throw line during the Travel America Classic. She also took five steals from the opposition and dished out seven assists

---Heather Lvingstone (11) shoots against St. Rose at the 2000 NCAA Division II Elite Eight in Pine Bluff, Ark. NKU toppled No. 1 St. Rose from the unbeaten ranks with a 60-50 victory on March 22. Photo courtesy of the Associated Press

BUTLER ON TARGET: NKU senior forward Katie Butler is scoring at a 10.3 point clip and is the Great Lakes Valley Conference's most accurate 3-point shooter at 55.6 percent. Butler, a native of Findlay, Ohio, is also the conference's most accurate shooter from the field, hitting at a 59.2 percent rate.

ATOP THE GLVC: NKU is the most accurate shooting team in the GLVC at 51.7 percent from the field, 41.1 percent from 3-point range, and 81.4 percent from the free-throw line. NKU also leads the GLVC in blocked shots with 49 and assists with 18 per game.

ABOUT ST. ROSE: The Golden Knights are led by junior center Lauren Revesz, who averages 17.0 ppg and 5.8 rebounds. Senior guard Linsey Onishuk is scoring 14.6 ppg. St. Rose is a member of the Northeast-10 Conference.

THE LAST TIME AGAINST ST. ROSE: On March 22, 2000, at the NCAA Division II Elite Eight in Pine Bluff, Ark., NKU handed previously unbeaten St. Rose a 60-50 defeat. Freshman Bridget Flanagan keyed the win with 13 points off the bench.

Michele Tuchfarber scored 14 points for the second-ranked Norse, who improved to 30-2. Down 25-20 at halftime, the Norse took their first lead of the game at 45-44 on a jumper by Flanagan with 3:13 left.

NKU wouldn't trail again. St. Rose (34-1) tied it with 2:57 left, but NKU closed the game with a 3-pointer from Flanagan, eight points from Tuchfarber and a conventional three-point play by freshman Amy Mobley to seal the victory.

NKU went on to beat Western Washington in the NCAA Division II Final Four, and the Norse claimed their first-ever national title with an overtime victory against North Dakota State on March 25, 2000. Michelle Cottrell added 13 points for NKU. Colleen Sheridan and Ngalula Nana Lukengu scored 16 points apiece to lead St. Rose.

That is the only time NKU and St. Rose have met in women's basketball.