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The Gators play No. 12 LSU, their third consecutive ranked opponent.

Saturday January 11, 2014Gators Face No. 12/13 LSU Sunday in Third Straight Game vs. Ranked Foe

Baton Rouge, LA

The Gators play No. 12 LSU, their third consecutive ranked opponent.

Florida squares off against its third consecutive nationally-ranked opponent when the team travels to Baton Rouge to play No. 12/13 LSU on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (Noon CT).

 

Sunday’s game will be the only regular-season meeting this year between the Gators and Lady Tigers.

 

The game will be television live nationally on ESPNU with Roy Philott and Steffi Sorensen calling the action.

 

On the Road

·         UF is 3-1 in true road games this year, earning victories at Kennesaw State (Nov. 17), Troy (Dec. 4) and No. 6 Kentucky (Jan. 5), while falling at Virginia Tech (Nov. 14).

 

Preseason Chatter

·         The SEC coaches and members of the media both selected Florida to finish 10th in the league standings in their respective preseason polls.

·         LSU was picked to finish third by both groups.

 

Streaking Along Overall

·         Florida boasts a nine-game winning streak entering Sunday’s contest at LSU.

·         The last time Florida won nine consecutive games was during the 2008-09 campaign, when the team lost its season-opener before rattling off 15 straight victories.

 

Streaking Along in the SEC

·         Florida is 3-0 in the SEC for the first time since the 1997-98 season.

·         The last time the Gators started their league schedule 4-0 was during the 1996-97 season, when the team defeated Auburn, South Carolina, LSU, Tennessee and Vanderbilt to open their league slate.

·         Amanda Butler was an assistant coach on that 1996-97 Gator team, while Murriel Page was a junior during the 1996-97 season when the team won its first five SEC games.

 

Gator Watch

·         Four Gators average a double-figure scoring effort: Jaterra Bonds (17.1 ppg), January Miller (12.1 ppg), Christin Mercer (11.8 ppg) and Cassie Peoples (10.9 ppg).

·         Kayla Lewis has been the top Gator on the boards, pulling down 8.1 per game, followed by Ronni Williams’ 6.6 per game mark and Mercer’s 5.8 effort.

·         Bonds is dishing 4.3 assists per game, with Peoples handing out 3.6.

·         Four different Gators have recorded at least 20 steals en route to the team’s 10.8 per game average, with Miller and Peoples collecting 28, Bonds 27 and Mercer 24.

 

Eight is Enough

·         The Gators have dressed nine players in just one game this season (vs. Florida State, Nov. 21).

·         Only eight Gators have suited up in the other games.

·         The timetable for the return of Antoinette Bannister is undetermined after she had surgery on Dec. 5 on her right hand to repair damages incurred during a freak play in practice on Nov. 24.

 

The Series vs. LSU

·         LSU holds a healthy, 24-12 lead in the 36-game series with Florida, including a 12-4 in games played in Baton Rouge.

·         The Gators have won the last three meetings in the series, including both regular-season contests during the 2011-12 season when UF earned its first win in Baton Rouge since Jan. 21, 1996.

 

Quick Scout - LSU

·         The Lady Tigers sport a 6-1 home record, with their lone loss coming in their most recent game - a 52-48 setback to Texas A&M on Jan. 9.

·         Senior post Theresa Plaisance leads offense with 13.3 points and 7.2 rebounds per game. Her 6-foot-5 frame also has proven a capable perimeter threat, hitting 7-18 three-pointers (38.9%).

·         LSU converts 38.4 percent (61-159) of its three-pointer attempts, paced by senior Jeanne Kenney’s 42.7 percent (32-75) effort.

 

Breaking Down UF’s Nine-Game Streak

·         During the nine-game winning streak, UF is averaging 83.2 points per game and winning by a margin of 15.8 points per game.

·         5 different Gators have been the team’s leading game scorer in the nine games: Bonds (4), Lewis (2), Mercer, Peoples and Miller

·         4 Gators are averaging a double-figure scoring effort, paced by Jaterra Bonds’ 16.7 ppg. Bonds has also contributed during the run 4.3 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.7 steals per game.

·         Kayla Lewis averages 9.0 points and 9.3 rebounds, while shooting 61.7 percent from the floor

·         The Gators average 26.9 free throw attempts per game, while limiting opponents to 19.3 tries per game

 

Last TimeOut

·         Jaterra Bonds scored 15 points to lead a trio of double-figure Gator scorers and Florida defeated No. 25 Arkansas, 59-52, for its ninth consecutive win.

·         Sophomores January Miller and Christin Mercer each scored 13 points to round out the double-digit scorers for Florida.

·         Arkansas fought back from a 41-31 deficit and pulled within one point as late as with 2:27 remaining, before Florida finished on a 12-6 run, when Kayla Lewis finished a jumper inside after a nice dish from Mercer, who scored the next bucket for the Gators that gave them a 51-47 advantage with 58 seconds left.

·         Florida sealed the game at the free throw line, where it connected on all eight of its attempts in the final 40 seconds, with Bonds, Carlie Needles, Cassie Peoples and Miller each netting two.

·         This is the first time the Gators have defeated ranked opponents in consecutive games since the 2003-04 season (def. No. 19/15 Georgia on Feb. 26, 2004 and No. 18/20 Auburn on Feb. 29, 2004).

·         The last time Florida earned back-to-back wins against ranked teams was during the 2008-09 season, however, those games were not played consecutively (No. 22 Florida State on Nov. 23, No. 21/19 Arizona State on Nov. 29 and No. 16/19 Pittsburgh on Dec. 21).

 

You Want SEC Thrillers? We Play Them!

·         Florida’s last meeting against 11 of the 13 other teams from the SEC has been decided by 10 points or less.

·         The only two that were not were each decided by 11 points: the 11-point loss at South Carolina on March 3, 2013 (67-56) and the 11-point loss to Vanderbilt on Feb. 21, 2013 (68-57).

 

Bonds, Jaterra Bonds

·         Senior Jaterra Bonds is doing it all in her final collegiate season. She leads the Gators in scoring (17.1 ppg), assists (4.3 apg), made free throws (96) and free throw attempts (117), while hitting 46.2 percent of her shots from the floor and collecting 1.7 steals per game.

 

Quick Shots

·         Kayla Lewis has logged a double-figure REBOUNDING effort in 5 of the last 9 games and is averaging 9.0 points and 9.3 rebounds during the last nine games.

·         Cassie Peoples has scored double-figures in seven of the last 9 games and is averaging 14.0 points during that span.

·         In the last nine games, Carlie Needles has knocked down 12 of her 17 three-pointers this year, sinking 34.3 percent (12-35) of her tries during the run. In the first seven games, she went 5-30 (16.7%) from deep.

 

Peoples Relishes Starting Assignment

·         Since Cassie Peoples was inserted into the starting lineup on Dec. 4 at Troy, the sophomore is averaging 14.5 points, while connecting on 38.6 percent overall from the floor during the eight-game span.

 

Thrillers!

·         Eight of UF’s last 11 games have been decided by 10 points or less (6-2 record in those games).

 

A Break in the Action

·         The Gators have their first of two breaks from competition during the SEC schedule on Thur., Jan. 16, before returning to action on Sun., Jan. 19 to play host to Georgia at 1 p.m.

 

Stat Row:

Florida

·         Points Per Game: 79.8

·         Scoring Defense: 68.4

·         Scoring Margin: +11.4

·         Rebounding Margin: -1.1

·         FG%: 45.1%

·         3FG%: 30.2%

·         FT%: 69.2%

Gator Leaders

·         Scoring: Jaterra Bonds, 17.1

·         Rebounding: Kayla Lewis, 8.1

·         Assists: Jaterra Bonds, 4.3

 

LSU

·         Points Per Game: 71.5

·         Scoring Defense: 61.4

·         Scoring Margin: +10.1

·         Rebounding Margin: +4.0

·         FG%: 42.5%

·         3FG%: 38.4%

·         FT%: 68.6%

Lady Tiger Leaders

·         Scoring: Theresa Plaisance, 13.3

·         Rebounding: T. Plaisance, 7.2

·         Assists: Jeanne Kenney, 3.4

 

Quotes from the Court

UF Head Coach Amanda Butler on LSU

“LSU has good size and has playmakers in different ways in just about every spot. There’s such diversity on that team with (Jeanne) Kenney and her ability to run the team and shoot the ball and Raigyne’s (Moncrief) athleticism, (Danielle) Ballard’s ability to break down anybody and then there’s (Theresa) Plaisance, who led the league in scoring last year and is so versatile and can hurt you in so many different ways. (Shanece) McKinney is having a great year with her rebounding. They bring (DaShawn) Harden off the bench and she can put you in some tough spots. LSU can be fast, they can be big, they can shoot it, they can drive. They are really a tough team to guard.”

 

Butler on the team’s response to its win streak

“I think as a group, they feel a lot more together. They are really drawing strength and energy from one another. I don’t think there’s any tightness at all. I think there is a real genuine, authentic sense of who they are as a group. They love each other. They are playing hard for each other. They understand that they are going to have to battle, whether it’s because we’re short on numbers or just plain being short, they are willing to do whatever it takes. At the same time, I don’t think they look at themselves as unbeatable because they learned a great lesson from earlier in the season in what makes us vulnerable and what makes us good.”

 

Senior Jaterra Bonds on the team’s recent run

“It feels good but you just can’t relax. You have to come in the next day and put in the work just like we’ve been doing. Every game is going to be a battle so you can’t take any team for granted or even your preparation. We have to win the preparation battle. When we’re well prepared and we have great practices, our chances of winning is greater.”

 

 

Florida (13-3, 3-0 SEC) at #12/13 LSU (12-3, 1-1 SEC)

Pete Maravich Assembly Center (13,215) * Baton Rouge, La.

Sun., January 12 * 1 p.m. ET (Noon CT)

 

Game Notes:

Florida (PDF): http://www.gatorzone.com/basketball/women/stats/notes/pre/20140112130000.pdf

LSU: http://bit.ly/1iZMYh3

 

Game Coverage & More!

Radio: LIVE on ESPN850 WRUF-AM in Gainesville with Adam Schick & Brittany Davis

Internet Audio: LIVE thru www.Gatorzone.com (FREE) [http://www.gatorvision.tv//mediaPortal/player.dbml?&catid=0&DB_OEM_ID=6500]

Television: LIVE on ESPNU (Cox in Gainesville/Ocala Ch. 251/1251, DirecTV 208) with Roy Philpott and Steffi Sorensen

Internet Video: WatchESPN App [http://espn.go.com/watchespn/index/_/id/1447822/Womens-College-Basketball-Florida-vs-LSU]

Internet Scoring: LIVE thru GatorZone.com (FREE) [http://www.lsusports.net/liveStats/liveStats.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=5200&LIST_SPORT_KEY=W_BASKETBALL]

 

Opening Tip

·         Florida is 3-0 in the SEC for the first time since the 1997-98 season.

·         The Gators have not won four straight SEC games to start to the league schedule since the 1996-97 team won its first five.

·         UF sports its first nine-game win streak since the 2008-09 season

·         All three of UF’s SEC wins have been by 10 points or less

·         Eight of UF’s last 12 games have been decided by 10 points or less (6-2 record in those games).

·         In 10 of UF’s 16 games, every Gator who suited up to play, scored

·         Jaterra Bonds is expected to make the 100th start of her career - one of only nine Gators to start as many

 

For all of the latest information on Florida women’s basketball:

Official Website: www.gatorzone.com/basketball/women

Facebook: www.facebook.com/FloridaWomensBasketball

Twitter: @GatorZoneWBK  and  @CoachButlerUF 

 

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