Utah women's basketball opens the season at home against UCI on Thursday.
Nov. 14, 2007
Series: Utah leads, 2-0
Series Streak: Utah won two
Last Meeting: Utah 71, UCI 56 (Nov. 28, 1997)
Last Meeting in Utah: Utah 71, UCI 56 (Nov. 28, 1997)
Radio: KALL 700 AM, Chris Tunis (play by play)
UtahUtes.com: Free audio/video/statistics
The University of Utah women's basketball team begins the 2007-08 season with its first regular season game at the Huntsman Center on Thursday night. Tipoff against the UC Irvine Anteaters is set for 7 p.m.
The Utes are coming off of a 2-0 exhibition season that saw them top Montana-Western, 95-36, and Fort Lewis College, 78-32. Leading the Utes over the two-game, preseason span were Kalee Whipple (20.5 points per game), Jessica Perry (7.0 rebounds) and Leilani Mitchell (10.5 assists).
The Utes began the season receiving votes in the ESPN/USA Today Preseason Coaches Poll.
Last year, the Utes went 19-14 overall and 10-6 in Mountain West Conference play. They return three starters and seven letterwinners from that team that made it to the second round of the Women's National Invitational Tournament. Four newcomers also join the Utes for the 2007-08 season.
Scouting the Opponent
The Anteaters come to Salt Lake City having opened up their 2007-08 season with a 65-61 home loss against New Mexico State on Nov. 9. Leading UC Irvine were Kelly Cochran in scoring (16 points) and rebounds (11), and Miranda Forry in assists (six). UCI was picked to finish eighth in the Big West according to the league's media and coaches polls. It is coming off of a 6-24 season in 2006-07. The Anteaters finished seventh in the Big West with a 3-11 mark, and they lost to Long Beach State in the Big West Tournament first round. Molly Tuter is in her fourth year at the helm with a 23-58 career coaching mark.
A Brief Look at the Series
Thursday marks only the third time that Utah and UC Irvine have tangled on the hardwood. It is the second such meeting in Salt Lake City. Utah owns the all-time series lead, 2-0. It's been 10 years since these two last met, and Utah nabbed the 71-56 home win in that Nov. 28, 1997, meeting. Utah is 13-12 all-time against current members of the Big West.