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Women's Basketball Hosts Samford Saturday

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CHATTANOOGA vs. SAMFORD
JANUARY 25, 2014 - 4:00 p.m. EST - DH
CHATTANOOGA, TENNESSEE - McKENZIE ARENA
TELEVISION: ESPN3 - RADIO: ESPN 105.1 FM
PLAY-BY-PLAY: LARRY WARD


 
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FOSTER TRIES FOR 800; WOMEN’S BASKETBALL HOSTS SAMFORD SATURDAY

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. --- The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga women’s basketball team will host Southern Conference rival Samford Saturday afternoon at the McKenzie Arena in the first game of a double header. The women’s game will tip at 4 p.m. while the men’s game is set to tip at 7 p.m.

WHAT TO KNOW …
- Saturday will be the first opportunity for Jim Foster to reach 800 victories
     - Foster was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2013
     - Only 10 other NCAA women’s basketball coaches from all divisions have reached 800 victories
- 34-game home win streak, the longest in the nation, is on the line
- UTC has won 24 consecutive Southern Conference regular season games
- 12-game win streak and undefeated in league play


CHATTANOOGA vs. SAMFORD
This will be the 19th meeting between the two teams. While Chattanooga leads the series 12-6, Samford has won four of the last seven meetings. Since the Bulldogs joined the Southern Conference in 2008, the two have played 12 games and UTC holds a slight 7-5 edge in the series. Last year Chattanooga defeated Samford 66-60 in Birmingham then posted a 60-46 win the next month in the Roundhouse.

SCOUTING CHATTANOOGA (16-3, 8-0)
After dropping back-to-back games in Hawai’i, head coach Jim Foster shook up the lineup and gave the freshmen a larger role. As a result, UTC defeated Colorado State and started a 12-game win streak.  Chattanooga leads the Southern Conference in multiple categories. UTC is averaging a SoCon-best 70.1 points per game while holding opponents to just 58.5 points per game. In the last two games, Wofford scored just 36 points while Furman was allowed only 44. As a result, Chattanooga has a league-best 11.6 scoring margin. UTC also leads the league in field goal percentage making 44.6 percent of its shot attempts and is ranked second from the free throw line (.718) while fifth from beyond the arc making just 32.7 percent of its shots. On the boards, UTC tops the league in rebounding defense, allowing opponents to grab just 34 rebounds per game while averaging 37.4 per game. Chattanooga leads the SoCon in assists with 15.8 per game and has a league-best 1.3 assist-turnover ratio. UTC is averaging just 12.6 turnovers per game, among the best in the country, and leads the SoCon by forcing opponents 15.1 per game.

Senior Taylor Hall is ranked in seven categories by the NCAA and leads the Southern Conference in assists (4.7), assist-turnover ratio (1.7) and defensive rebounds (7.2) and is ranked second for rebounds 8.8 and playing time (35.7) while sitting third in the league for free throw percentage (.823) and steals (2.2). She leads UTC in scoring with 13.5 points per game and blocked shots (1.3). Hall has nine double-doubles on the year and has the second most rebounds by a SoCon player this year pulling down 16 at Hawai’i. Senior Ashlen Dewart is second on the team in scoring with 11.1 points and rebounding with 5.1 boards per game. She is ranked sixth in the league for field goal percentage making 52.1 percent of her shots. Freshman point guard Chelsey Shumpert has started all 12 games in the win streak and is third in the SoCon for 3-point field goal percentage making 43.5 percent of her attempts (20-46).

SAMFORD (5-14, 3-5)
The Bulldogs suffered setbacks this season with the loss of Taylor Reece and Shelby Campbell. Reece had a preseason knee injury that sidelined her for the year while Campbell went down on Jan. 11 against Appalachian State and is out for several games and possibly the year. Samford’s starting lineup features senior Christy Robinson, a redshirt freshman and three true freshmen. The Bulldogs are coming off back-to-back wins over Furman and Wofford. Samford enters the game with a record of 5-14 overall and 3-5 in Southern Conference play. The Bulldogs are coming off a 64-52 win over Wofford on Monday. Senior center Christy Robinson leads Samford in scoring, averaging 8.5 points per game. Senior guard Shelby Campbell, who will miss the game with a knee injury, averages 8.1 points per game, while freshman Hannah Nichols scores 7.8 points per game. Sophomore guard Krista Stricklin leads the team in rebounding, grabbing 4.4 boards per game. Robinson averages 4.0 rebounds per game. Campbell leads the team in assists, with an average of 2.6 assists per game. Robinson averages 1.8 assists per game.

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