ST. BONAVENTURE (19-4, 8-2 A-10) vs. SAINT LOUIS (18-5, 8-2)
Wednesday, Feb. 10 - 7:00 p.m.
Bob Lanier Court at the Reilly Center – St. Bonaventure, N.Y.
Live Radio: WGWE 105.9 FM (Play-by-play: Mike "Smitty" Smith; Color: Steve McCord)
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Twitter: @BonniesWBB | Instagram: @GoBonnies
Wednesday is the annual Bonnies Pink Game. For full information on how you can support a worthy cause, please click here.
OPENING TIP OVERVIEW
After nearly a full week away from competition, the St. Bonaventure women's basketball team returns to the Reilly Center in a key Atlantic 10 battle vs. Saint Louis on Wednesday night at 7 p.m.
Wednesday's game becomes all the more important following last week's setback at VCU as Saint Louis, also off last weekend with a bye, moved into a tie with the Bonnies at 8-2 overall in Atlantic 10 play. Both teams are chasing George Washington (10-1) and Duquesne (9-1) and are seeking to secure positioning in the all-important top four A-10 seeds as the conference tournament approaches.
ABOUT SAINT LOUIS
- The Billikens have taken great strides under veteran head coach Lisa Stone, owner of over 500 career victories. The former Wisconsin leader has led Saint Louis from 12 wins in 2013-14 to a 15-16 record last year and now a school record-tying 18 victories already this season (matching the 1978-79 and 1979-80 teams). Saint Louis also has tied its record for most conference wins with eight (equaling the 2002-03 team when SLU was in Conference USA).
- Junior center Sadie Stipanovich earned a spot on the preseason A-10 Second Team and averages 12.6 points and 6.2 rebounds. Jackie Kemph leads the team in scoring at 15.3 ppg, ranking fifth in Atlantic 10 points per game this season. Jamesia Price also adds 9.4 ppg.
- Saint Louis, picked fifth in the preseason Atlantic 10 Preseason Coaches Poll, entered the week ranked No. 83 in the RPI. The Billikens have a strength of schedule of 236. SLU has been successful in A-10 play thus far, working into a third-place tie with the Bonnies. SLU has won seven of its last eight after opening A-10 action with an overtime loss at home to George Mason on Jan. 2, also falling at league-leading George Washington, 89-80, on Jan. 31.
- The Billikens have a high-powered offense, ranking third in the league at 71.7 points per game. SLU's +11.1 scoring margin is also second only to Duquesne in the A-10. Some of the Billikens' success can be traced back to cashing in at the line – SLU and St. Bonaventure rank first and second in the league in free throw percentage (SLU – 74.7%, SBU – 74.4%), but the Billikens have 130 more free throw attempts than the Bonnies this year. Only George Mason (480 free throw attempts) has gotten to the line more than SLU (331-for-443).
THE BONA-SAINT LOUIS SERIES
Wednesday will mark the 11th meeting between St. Bonaventure and Saint Louis all-time with the Bonnies owning a 4-0 record at the Reilly Center vs. the Billikens and 7-3 overall. St. Bonaventure has won seven of the last eight meetings including a thrilling 57-55 road win last season. In that game, the Bonnies rallied from 20 points down with 11:35 to play behind a double-double of 20 points and 15 rebounds from Katie Healy and 13 points by Nyla Rueter. Sadie Stipanovich recorded 16 points and 13 rebounds for the Billikens.
JUST "BONNIES" PLEASE
When referring to the St. Bonaventure University women's basketball team (and all St. Bonaventure women's teams) please refer to us simply as "Bonnies," not "Lady Bonnies."
As of Monday, St. Bonaventure ranked No. 34 in the national RPI. Among A-10 teams, only Duquesne (25) ranks higher. The Bonnies have five wins over RPI Top 100 teams (Dayton, James Madison, Saint Joseph's, Georgetown, Stony Brook) and three additional wins over RPI Top 150 squads (Toledo, Buffalo, Penn State).
The Atlantic 10 ranks seventh among all conferences according to RealTime RPI. Only the SEC, Pac 12, Big 12, ACC, Big Ten, American and Big East rank higher.
Statistical odds and ends for Wednesday's game:
- Senior Katie Healy became the sixth player in SBU history to reach 1,500 points with her 22-point effort Jan. 20 at Dayton. She's now 12 points away from fifth place all-time in SBU scoring (Missy Ward, 1,578 points)
- Senior Nyla Rueter enters Wednesday 18 points away from 17th all-time in SBU scoring (Amy Rooks, 1,089 points).
- Katie Healy posted her fifth double-double of the year last Wednesday at VCU (19 points, 10 rebounds). She has 15 double-doubles for her career.
- For the season, Nyla Rueter's 58 3's are second only in the A-10 to Fordham's Hannah Missry (66).
- Last Wednesday's loss at VCU was the first for the Bonnies when leading at halftime (16-1).
- Last Wednesday also marked just the fourth time the Bonnies shot below 40 percent for a game and SBU also registered a season-low six assists.
St. Bonaventure has won its first 13 games at the Reilly Center - its longest winning streak to begin a season in program history. The Bonnies are the only undefeated team at home in the Atlantic 10. SBU's longest home winning streak overall is 16 games between the 2011-12 and 2012-13 seasons.
The Bonnies drew a season-high 2,011 fans to the Jan. 31 win over Richmond, the largest crowd since 2012, continuing a trend of strong attendance for the Bonnies. In conference play, SBU is averaging 1,318 fans per game which ranks third in the Atlantic 10 behind only Dayton and Saint Louis.
BY THE NUMBERS
> 2 – Among active Atlantic 10 players, senior Katie Healy ranks second in career scoring. With 1,566 points, she is behind only George Mason's Taylor Brown (1,572). Nationally, Healy ranks 41st among all Division I active players in career scoring.
> 3.41 – St. Bonaventure compiled a team GPA of 3.41 during the 2014-15 academic year, ranking 23rd among all NCAA Division I women's basketball teams.
> 7 – The Atlantic 10 ranks seventh among all conferences according to RealTime RPI. Only the SEC, Pac 12, Big 12, ACC, Big Ten, American and Big East rank higher.
> 20 – The Bonnies have averaged 20 wins per season over the past eight years. SBU will attempt to reach 20 wins for the fifth time in the past seven seasons.
> 45 – Katie Healy sits sixth all-time in SBU scoring, but enters today's game just 45 points away from fourth.
> 56.1% – Miranda Drummond's 56.1 true shooting percentage (FGs, FTs and 3PT) is highest on the team this season.
For the latest news on St. Bonaventure athletics, stay connected on social media. Follow the Bonnies on Twitter @Go_Bonnies and get women's basketball updates @BonniesWBB. Keep up with the Bonnies on Facebook /GoBonnies and on Instagram @GoBonnies.