Nov. 19, 2002
NKU BEGINS SEASON AGAINST GVSU
Norse to meet Lakers at 8 p.m. this Friday
HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. - The Northern Kentucky University womens basketball team will begin the 2002-03 season this Friday at 8 p.m. against Grand Valley State University in the first round of the University of Findlay Tip-Off Tournament.
NKU - which is ranked No. 6 nationally in the WBCAs NCAA Division II preseason poll - will also meet Findlay at 3 p.m. Saturday in the finale of the round-robin event. The NKU/Findlay radio broadcast can be heard live on WTSJ (AM 1050) this Saturday at 3 p.m.
NKU posted a 26-7 record last season and advanced to the NCAA Division II Elite Eight for the third time in four years. The Norse return two starters and eight letterwinners from that team, but NKU must replace two-time Division II National Player of the Year and all-time leading scorer Michelle Cottrell (2,241 career points).
NKU is the preseason favorite in the Great Lakes Valley Conference coaches poll. Quincy University was picked second in the poll, followed by Bellarmine University and the University of Southern Indiana.
TO THE POINT: NKU sophomore Elizabeth Burrows, who averaged 2.9 points per game last season, will assume the point guard responsibilities for NKU in 2002-03. Burrows had 58 assists last season and averaged 16.6 minutes per game. She also had 20 steals last season.
LONG-RANGE THREAT: NKU senior guard Bridget Flanagan averaged 12.8 ppg last season. Flanagan, a graduate of Mercy High School in Cincinnati, connected on a school-record 81 three-point shots a year ago and earned second team All-GLVC honors.
Flanagan enters her final season with 832 career points.
MOBLEY ALSO CLOSES IN ON 1,000 POINTS: NKU senior forward Amy Mobley, who averaged 11.5 ppg in 2001-02, enters her final season with 887 career points. Mobley, a graduate of Harrison High School, averaged 6.4 rebounds per game last season. She also led NKU with 25 blocked shots and 107 assists in 2001-02.
MYERS PREPARES FOR COMEBACK: NKU sophomore forward/center Connie Myers, who suffered a season-ending knee injury last December, is healthy and will be a key for the Norse in 2002-03. Myers averaged 5.0 ppg and 3.5 rpg last season.
She scored a career-high 16 points and grabbed a career-best nine rebounds against the University of Alabama-Huntsville on Dec. 20 last season.
FABULOUS FRESHMAN: NKU freshman forward/center Sharell Snardon has been impressive in the preseason and figures to be a factor for the Norse. Snardon averaged 16.5 points and 10.0 rebounds as a senior at Louisville Male High School.
Snardon was named to the Kentucky All-Star Team last spring and scored the winning basket against the Indiana All-Stars in the game played at Owensboro, Ky.
VERSATILE FORWARD: Senior forward Kristin Polosky averaged 9.4 ppg last season, and she finished No. 2 on the team with 101 assists. She also averaged 5.2 rpg and made 18 three-point shots last season.
ABOUT GRAND VALLEY STATE: The Lakers posted a 13-13 record last season and finished 7-11 in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
Grand Valley State welcomes back leading scorer Laurie Rehmann, who averaged 14.8 points per game last season. Rehmann also averaged 5.3 rebounds per contest and made 30 of 96 three-point attempts. Junior center Julie Zeeff averaged 11.1 ppg and 5.4 rebounds per game last season and also returns to the Lakers lineup.
THE LAST TIME AGAINST GRAND VALLEY STATE: On March 5, 1999, in the semifinals of the NCAA Division II Great Lakes Region Tournament in Regents Hall, Michelle Cottrell scored 19 points and Julie Stanley added 18 points as NKU posted an 85-67 victory over Grand Valley State. Cottrell also added 17 rebounds in that game.
Michele Tuchfarber finished with 14 points for the Norse.
ABOUT FINDLAY: The Oilers own a 1-2 record after losing twice at the Division II Tip-Off Classic in Florida two weeks ago. Findlay posted a 16-10 overall record last season. NKU and Findlay have never met in womens basketball.
IMPORTANT REGIONAL GAMES: NKU, Grand Valley State and Findlay are all in the Great Lakes Region, making this weekends games even more important. The Norse will also face GLIAC member Wayne (Mich.) State University in Regents Hall on Dec. 30, and NKU could potentially play Northwood (Mich.) University in the Community Recorder Classic on Dec. 21.
The NCAA Division II Tournament field has been expanded to 64 teams this season, with each regional now comprised of eight teams. Last season, the regional tournaments were six-team fields, with the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds receiving first-round byes.
UP NEXT: NKU will begin GLVC play on Nov. 30 against Quincy at 1 p.m. in Regents Hall. The Norse will also play host to the University of Missouri-St. Louis at 5:30 p.m. on Dec. 2.
WBCA/NCAA II preseason poll
1. South Dakota State
2. Missouri Western State
3. North Dakota
4. California State Poly-Pomona
5. Glenville State
6. Northern Kentucky
7. Arkansas Tech
8. California State-Bakersfield
9. Southern Indiana
10. Western Washington
11. Florida Tech
12. Saint Mary's
14. American International
15. Seattle Pacific
16. Southeastern Oklahoma State
17. South Carolina-Aiken
18. North Dakota State
19. Lake Superior State
20. Southwest State
21. Central Arkansas
22. Mars Hill
23. Mesa State
24. California (Pa.)