Aggies Host Razorbacks in NCAA Second Round
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The 14th-ranked and No. 3 seed Texas A&M women’s basketball team has advanced to the second round of the 2012 NCAA Division I Championship for the sixth straight season and in a matchup of future Southeastern Conference opponents, A&M faces Arkansas on Monday, March 19 at the Reed Arena. Tipoff between the Aggies and the Razorbacks is set for 8:30 p.m. (CT) on ESPN2. A win Monday would guarantee A&M its fourth trip in five years to the NCAA Sweet 16.
#3 TEXAS A&M (23-10) vs. #6 ARKANSAS (24-8)
Monday, March 19, 2012 • 8:30 p.m. (CT)
Reed Arena (12,292)
College Station, Texas
Radio: Texas A&M Sports Network (KZNE 1150 AM)
Series History: Arkansas leads 20-2
Internet: : ESPN3.com, Free Live Statistics and Live Audio at AggieAthletics.com
Record: 23-10 (11-7 Big 12)
Ranking: #22 (AP), #14 (Coaches)
Last Result: W, 69-47 vs. Albany on March 17, 2012
Up Next: If win, NCAA Sweet 16 on March 25, 2012
Head Coach: Gary Blair, Ninth Season
Texas A&M Record: 211-89 (.703)
Career Record: 619-252 (.711) 27th Season
Record: 24-8 (10-6 Southeastern Conference)
Ranking: RV (AP), RV (Coaches)
Last Result: W, 72-55 vs. Dayton on March 17, 2012
Up Next: If win, NCAA Sweet 16 on March 25, 2012
Head Coach: Tom Collen, Fifth Season
Arkansas Record: 93-65 (.589)
Career Record: 310-135 (.697) 14th Season
NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP ON TV
• ESPN networks will air all 63 games of the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship. Play-by-play announcer Carter Blackburn and color analyst Tamika Raymond will call first-and second-round action live from Reed Arena on ESPN2 and ESPN3.
• Monday, Texas A&M will appear on the tube before a national television audience for the 16th time this season.
• The Aggies are 9-6 on national TV this season.
AGGIES ON THE RADIO
• All Texas A&M women’s basketball games can be heard via a radio broadcast on the Texas A&M Sports Network. Play-by-play announcer Mike Wright will call the action live from Reed Arena alongside color analyst Tap Bentz on KZNE 1150 AM. A live audio feed will also be available on RadioAggieland.com.
AGGIES IN NCAA TOURNAMENT PLAY
• The Aggies are 16-7 all-time in postseason play and are making their ninth all-time NCAA Tournament appearance next to 1994, 1996, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011.
• A&M is 4-2 all-time in the second round of the tournament and is 1-1 all-time against a No. 6 seed.
• Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair has now led 18 of his all-time squads at Stephen F. Austin (6-6), Arkansas (8-5) and A&M (14-5) combined to the Big Dance with a 28-16 career record in NCAA Tournament games.
TEXAS A&M ALL-TIME NCAA TOURNAMENT APPEARANCES (9)
2012 – TBA (No. 3 seed)
2011 – NCAA National Champion (No. 2 seed)
2010 – NCAA Second Round (No. 2 seed)*
2009 – NCAA Sweet 16 (No. 2 seed)
2008 – NCAA Elite Eight (No. 2 seed)*
2007 – NCAA Second Round (No. 4 seed)
2006 – NCAA First Round (No. 6 seed)
1996 – NCAA First Round (No. 7 seed)*
1994 – NCAA Sweet 16 (No. 13 seed)
* NCAA Automatic Bid
AGGIE NCAA TOURNAMENT TIDBITS
• Texas A&M is making a school-record seventh straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament. Prior to the streak, the Aggies had never played in consecutive NCAA Tournaments and had not been a part of March Madness since 1996.
• The Aggies are one of only four elite programs to be selected as a No. 4 seed or higher for six straight years. The other three teams include Connecticut, Stanford and Duke.
• For the past four years, A&M received four straight No. 2 seeds (2008, 2009, 2010, 2011) and is the only program in NCAA history to do so. Four other programs have earned just three consecutive No. 2 seeds including Texas Tech (1993, 1994, 1995) Purdue (2002, 2003, 2004), Stanford (2007, 2008, 2009) and Duke (2010, 2011, 2012).
• A&M received its first-ever No. 3 seed on this year’s Selection Monday.
• Texas A&M is the only site in the state of Texas to host the first and second rounds of the 2012 NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship. The Aggies host for the first time since the 1994 NCAA Tournament, when the first round was held in G. Rollie White Coliseum.
• Texas A&M will also host first and second round games next season and is one of just four institutions in the nation to host those rounds in both 2012 and 2013. A&M will be one of three Southeastern Conference schools to host next year.
• Blair is one of only two Division I women’s basketball coaches next to C. Vivian Stringer (Cheyney State, Iowa and Rutgers) to take three teams to the NCAA Sweet 16.
• In addition, Blair is one of only three all-time NCAA DI women's basketball coaches to lead two different teams to the NCAA Women’s Final Four next to Marianne Stanley (Old Dominion and Stanford) and Stringer.
• Historically, only two No. 3 seeds have gone on to win a national championship title including Tennessee in 1997 and North Carolina in 1994.
• A&M’s roster has a combined 88 games of NCAA Tournament experience, but a majority of that has come off the bench or late in secured wins. The Aggies total 29 starts in NCAA play, with seniors Carter, Elonu and White with nine each. White has the most career NCAA minutes (332), while Carter and Elonu are each over 250.
• The University of Arkansas is located in Fayetteville, Ark., has an enrollment of 21,406 and was founded in 1871.
• The Razorbacks return 11 letterwinners, including five starters from their 2010-11 squad that finished 22-12 overall and 6-10 (12th) in the Southeastern Conference.
• Arkansas received an at-large bid to the Big Dance and returns to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2003. The Razorbacks are in their ninth all-time tournament appearance.
• Arkansas is led by C’eira Ricketts with 11.3 points, 4.6 rebound and 4.4 assists per game. Sarah Watkins also averages double figures with 10.0 points per game. Ashley Daniels is the Razorbacks’ leading rebounder with 6.5 boards per game.
PROBABLE STARTING LINEUPS
Alexia Standish, G, 5-8, Fr.
5.4 ppg, 2.0 apg
Sydney Carter, G, 5-6, Sr.
11.0 ppg, 3.3 rpg
Tyra White, G, 6-0, Sr.
13.6 ppg, 5.7 rpg
Adaora Elonu, F, 6-1, Sr.
11.5 ppg, 6.2 rpg
Kelsey Bone, C, 6-4, Jr.
12.1 ppg, 6.8 rpg
Sarah Watkins, F, 6-0, Jr.
10.0 ppg, 4.4 rpg
Ashley Daniels, P, 6-2, Sr.
7.9 ppg, 6.5 rpg
Dominique Robinson, F, 6-0, RS-So.
6.6 ppg, 3.9 rpg
C’eira Ricketts, F/G, 5-9, Sr.
11.3 ppg, 4.6 rpg
Lyndsay Harris, G, 5-9, Sr.
9.5 ppg, 2.1 rpg
Points Per Game
Rebounds Per Game
Field Goal Percentage
Field Goal% Defense
Free Throw Percentage
Turnovers Per Game
Assists Per Game
Blocks Per Game
Steals Per Game
INSIDE THE SERIES
• Arkansas leads the all-time series with Texas A&M 20-2, but the two teams have not faced each other since 1991. The two teams played each other at least once every year from 1981-91, including the last nine years as members of the Southwest Conference. A&M’s two wins against the Razorbacks came in the same season, 1988.
• Should the Aggies win their NCAA Second Round game they will continue on through the Raleigh Regional and meet either second-seeded Maryland or seventh-seeded Louisville in the regional semifinal on Sunday, March 25 in Raleigh.
• Texas A&M seniors Kelsey Assarian, Sydney Carter, Adaora Elonu and Tyra White have each played in 12 career NCAA Tournament games since their freshman campaign in 2008-09. They are four of only 12 Aggies to have competed in every game of four-straight NCAA Tournaments next to former standouts Morenike Atunrase (2005-08), Patrice Reado (2005-08), A’Quonesia Franklin (2005-08), Takia Starks (2006-09), Danielle Gant (2006-09), La Toya Micheaux (2006-09), Damitria Buchanan (2007-10) and Sydney Colson (2008-11).
• The Aggies turned in their seventh consecutive 20-win season and their seventh straight 10-win season in Big 12 Conference play under head coach Gary Blair.
• The Aggies limited Iowa State (33) and Kansas State (36) to their lowest point totals of the season and are the only team in the Big 12 to have held two opponents to less than 40 points in conference play this year.
• Texas A&M finished the regular season tied for second place in the Big 12 standings with Oklahoma.
• The Aggies lead the Big 12 by forcing their opponents into an average of 20.3 turnovers per game, with a turnover margin of +5.5. The team has a scoring margin of +8.4 and averages 16.1 offensive rebounds per game which are both second-best in the Big 12.
• As of March 17, the Aggies had the 13h-best turnover margin in the nation, while Kelsey Bone held the 14th-best field goal percentage in the country at 53.4.
• Big 12 Newcomer of the Year Bone is second-best in the conference with her 53.4 field goal percentage.
NCAA FIRST ROUND RECAP
TEXAS A&M 69, ALBANY 47
• For the 16th time this season, Texas A&M used the starting lineup of Alexia Standish, Sydney Carter, Tyra White, Adaora Elonu and Kelsey Bone…The Aggies are 11-5 with this starting lineup.
• Texas A&M improves to 1-0 in its first meeting with Albany.
• The Aggies move to 16-7 all-time in NCAA postseason play in their ninth all-time appearance. In addition, they have won seven straight NCAA Tournament games.
• A&M is 7-2 all-time in the NCAA First Round and has won six straight first-round games. In addition, the Aggies are 1-0 against the No. 14 seed.
• The Aggies are 19-2 when leading at the half.
• A&M snapped a 10-game winning streak for Albany.
• For just the seventh time this season, A&M made five or more 3-point field goals.
• The Aggies outscored the Great Danes 29-14 off turnovers.
• In the second half, A&M shot 55 percent from the floor and held Albany to just 28 percent.
• With three steals, Carter moved into ninth place on the all-time list with 201 steals.
• Elonu set a new A&M individual record for most games played with her 139th contest today.
• White scored in double figures for the 26th time this season, Elonu for the 21st time and Standish for the fifth, including three of the last four games.
• White’s 18 points matched her NCAA Tournament career best and it was her eighth straight postseason game in double figures.
• Elonu’s three steals were an NCAA Tournament career best.
• Karla Gilbert had a season and NCAA Tournament career-best four blocked shots.
A&M’S LAST SEVEN
• Over the last seven games, Texas A&M has gone 4-3, but has shot nearly 46 percent from the floor and from beyond the arc. The Aggies are led by Karla Gilbert’s 70 percent shooting (14-20), while Standish has been lighting it up from 3-point range shooting 65.4 percent (17-26) over last seven games.
• Adrienne Pratcher and Sydney Carter are approaching the 100-assist mark for the season. With 96 assists, Pratcher leads the team and is on the verge of her first 100-assist season. Carter is second on the team with 94 and is looking for her third consecutive 100-assist season.
STANDISH STARTING FRESH
• Alexia Standish is only the fifth true freshman to start at point guard in Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair’s nine seasons in Aggieland and she has the second-most starts of that impressive group.
FROM THE SIDELINES
• Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair is in his 27th overall season as a Division I head coach. He currently ranks in the top 15 in career victories (618) and in the top 25 by winning percentage (.710) among active Division I coaches in the NCAA women’s basketball record books.
• Blair is one of only four active Division I coaches (six all-time) to lead three different programs to the NCAA Tournament next to Stringer of Rutgers, Joanne P. McCallie of Duke and Jim Foster of Ohio State. Blair previously coached at Stephen F. Austin (1985-93) and Arkansas (1993-03).
• Arkansas head coach Tom Collen was an assistant coach under Blair at Arkansas in the late 1990’s.
• Each of A&M’s four coaches spent time at Arkansas, Blair as head coach from 1993-03, Vic Schaefer from 1997-03, Kelly Bond from 2000-03 and Johnnie Harris from 2004-07. Harris is a native of Pine Bluff, Ark.
• Blair's wife, Dr. Nan Smith-Blair, is the director of nursing at the University of Arkansas. The couple has two children, Paige and Matt, and two grandchildren, Logan (8) and Lola (2). Paige owns a children's boutique in Fayetteville, Ark., and is married to Beau Thompson, head boys' basketball coach at Farmington High School in Farmington, Ark.
• While head coach at Arkansas, Blair led the program to its only Final Four in 1998. He had a record of 198-120 (.623).
WHITE EARNS ALL-REGION HONORS
• Tyra White was among 52 all-region selections chosen by the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA). On, Monday, March 19, the selection committee will review these candidates and trim the list to 40 finalists, all of whom will be in the running for selection to the 10-member WBCA Division I Coaches’ All-America Team. White earned the honor for the second straight season and was a WBCA All-America Team Honorable Mention last season.
FIVE AGGIES EARN BIG 12 WOMEN’S BASKETBALL ACCOLADES
• Kelsey Bone was named the Big 12 Newcomer of the Year. Tyra White was selected to the All-Big 12 First Team. Sydney Carter was voted to the All-Big 12 Second Team and the Big 12 All-Defensive Team, and both Bone and Adaora Elonu were named All-Big 12 Honorable Mention. Alexia Standish earned a spot on the Big 12 All-Freshman Team.
IN THE RECORD BOOKS
• Against Albany on March 17, White moved into fourth place on A&M’s career field goals list and currently has 597 field goals made. She is 30 field goals away from moving into third place.
• Against Albany on March 17, White moved into A&M’s top 10 list for career rebounds and currently has 585. She is 32 rebounds away from moving into ninth place.
• Against Missouri on Feb. 14, White moved into seventh place on A&M’s career points list and currently has 1,472 career points. She is 34 points away from moving into sixth place.
• Against Albany on March 17, Elonu moved into sixth place on the career rebounds list and currently has 716 boards.
• Against Oklahoma on March 9, Elonu (84 career blocks, including an individual season-best 35 this season) moved into ninth place in career block shots. She is two blocks away from moving into the eighth place on the all-time list.
• Against Oklahoma State on Jan. 24, Elonu became 25th A&M player to pass over 1,000 career points and currently has 1,167.
• Against Albany on March 17, Carter moved into ninth place on the all-time list with 201 steals. She is eight steals away from moving into eight place.
• Against Kansas on Jan. 21, Carter became the 24th A&M player to pass over 1,000 career points and currently has 1,157.
• Carter holds the second-best career free-throw percentage (81.3).