Jayhawks to Face No. 4 Baylor Wednesday
Junior Jada Brown
LAWRENCE, Kan. – For the second time in the past three games, Kansas women’s basketball will face a nationally-ranked opponent when No. 4 Baylor comes to Lawrence. The contest is slated for Wednesday, Jan. 6 at 7 p.m., inside Allen Fieldhouse. The match-up will air on the Jayhawk Television Network and the Jayhawk IMG Sports Radio Network.
AROUND THE GYM
Wednesday is Public Safety Day inside Allen Fieldhouse where motorcycles and other equipment will be on display. All first responders will receive $5 admission with valid ID. Fans will receive a free popcorn with the purchase of any soda.
KANSAS FAST BREAKS
- Baylor leads the all-time series against the Jayhawks, 23-8. KU owns a 5-8 mark against the Lady Bears in Allen Fieldhouse.
- The Jayhawks own a 119-195 all-time record against Big 12 Conference foes.
- Kansas has a record of 410-170 (.709) in Allen Fieldhouse. Over the last five seasons, Kansas has posted a 65-34 mark on its home court. This season, Kansas owns a 4-5 mark at home.
- Wednesday evening’s game marks the second in the last three contests against a nationally-ranked foe. Baylor is the first top-5 program that the Jayhawks will face this year. Kansas is 0-1 against ranked opponents.
- The Jayhawks have recorded 30 or more points in the paint on seven different occasions, including a season-high 48 against Oral Roberts (12/22).
- KU’s bench outscored Oklahoma’s bench, 23-15, on Dec. 30. The Jayhawks’ bench has combined for 20 or more points in a game five times in 2015-16.
- When Brandon Schneider-coached teams are leading with less than five minutes to play, his overall record is 351-12, and 5-0 at Kansas.
- Sophomore guard Lauren Aldridge has recorded double-figure scoring performances in 10 of 13 games so far this season, while freshman Kylee Kopatich has also logged double-digits in 10 of 13 games this year, including nine of the last 10 contests.
- Freshman guard Jayde Christopher has dished out three or more assists on six occasions, including a career-high mark of six against Northern Illinois (11/27). She leads the team with 31 assists.
- Junior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen has swatted away a team-high 23 blocks this season, averaging 1.8 per game. She is on pace to rank among the top-5 blocks for juniors and KU’s top-10 season records. She needs 30 more to crack Kansas’ top-10 season list and 19 to etch her name into the junior record.
ABOUT THE JAYHAWKS
The Jayhawks (5-8, 0-2 Big 12) look to snap a four-game losing streak at home against Baylor after falling to West Virginia, 65-45, on Sunday, Jan. 3 in their Big 12 home opener. Kansas’ offense struggled to find a rhythm early as the Mountaineers forced 15 turnovers in the first half, leading to a 19-point deficit at the intermission. After only three Jayhawks recorded points in the first half, five more Jayhawks found their way into the scoring column in the second half of action. The boost in production helped Kansas outscore West Virginia 18-13 in the final quarter.
Aldridge led the squad in scoring for the seventh time this season with 16 points against the Mountaineers. The Marshfield, Missouri native has recorded double figures in 10 of 13 games this season and averages 12.2 points per game, fourth in the Big 12 among underclassmen. Aldridge also connected on 3-of-3 long-range buckets, and leads the Jayhawks in made three-pointers with 28.
Manning-Allen and Kopatich tied for the second-most points against West Virginia, with seven each. Manning-Allen filled out her line with four rebounds, two assists, one block and one steal. Kopatich earned all seven of her points in the final 10 minutes of play, including 3-of-4 shooting at the free throw line. The young guard continues to lead the squad from the charity stripe, with team-high marks in both free throws made (34) and free throw percentage (.773).
Cheadle logged six points and a team-high seven rebounds in her fifth start of the season. Four of those boards came on the offensive glass, helping the Jayhawks tally seven second-chance points. Cheadle also tied with three other Jayhawks for a team-high two assists.
SCOUTING THE LADY BEARS
No. 4 Baylor is 14-1 on the season, and 1-1 in the Big 12 after earning its first conference victory of the year against No. 18/19 Oklahoma at home on Sunday evening by a score of 78-68. The Lady Bears bounced back after losing their conference opener to Oklahoma State on Dec. 30, with starting senior point guard Niya Johnson sidelined with an ankle injury. Johnson returned on Sunday with a double-double performance to help lead the Bears to victory. Baylor holds a 23-8 overall record against the Jayhawks, but heads to Lawrence with a 5-8 record against Kansas inside Allen Fieldhouse.
The Lady Bears finished first in the Big 12 in 2014-15 with a perfect 9-0 record, and are once again picked to claim the conference title this year by the coaches’ preseason poll. After winning the regular-season title, Baylor went on to win its fifth-consecutive Big 12 tournament championship and earn a No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Lady Bears advanced to the Elite Eight before falling to eventual national runner-up Notre Dame. Eight players return from last year’s squad, including Big 12 Player of the Year Nina Davis.
Davis, a junior forward, has recorded double-figure scoring in all 15 games this season, most recently putting up 24 points against the Sooners. Davis is now second in the Big 12 in scoring, averaging 18.3 points per game. The Memphis, Tennessee native also averages 5.9 rebounds per contest, and gathered nine boards against Oklahoma.
Johnson logged 10 points, 11 assists, seven rebounds and four steals in her return to the court on Sunday. Her performance marked the fifth time this season reaching double-digit scoring and the ninth time handing out double-digit assists. A crucial member of the Lady Bear offense, Baylor put up just 45 points in its loss to Oklahoma State without Johnson, despite averaging 81.9 points per contest.
Through 15 games, Baylor sits atop the Big 12 in scoring offense as well as scoring defense, allowing only 52.0 points per game. The Lady Bears hold a plus-29.9 scoring margin and shoot a conference-best 50.4 percent from the field. Baylor also leads the Big 12 in blocks per game (6.0), assists per game (24.5) and steals per game (10.4).
THIS DAY IN KU WOMEN’S BASKETBALL HISTORY
Record on Jan. 6: 6-3
Kansas women’s basketball will play on the 6th day of January for the 10th time in program history. The first meeting on Jan. 6 was in 1978 against Kansas State, while the last was against Baylor in 2007. In 1995, Kansas made 22-of-29 from the free throw line to ensure a 80-69 victory over Iowa State. Four Jayhawks contributed double-digit scoring efforts led by Charisse Sampson, who contributed 25 points.
THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS
The Jayhawks are the only team in the Big 12 without a senior on their roster. In fact, Kansas will not face another team during the regular season that does not have at least one senior on its squad. The last time a Kansas roster did not include a senior was the 2002-03 season. The Jayhawks, along with West Virginia, boast the most underclassmen on their respective rosters with 10 each.
AROUND THE LEAGUE
Redshirt junior Timeka O’Neal ranks sixth in the Big 12 in three-point field goal percentage, shooting 42.5 percent this season, while sophomore guard Lauren Aldridge is 14th in the conference, making 37.3 percent of her attempts. Additionally, Aldridge is 16th in the Big 12 in scoring (12.2 points per game). Aldridge is also sixth in three-point field goals made (2.2 per game) and first in minutes played (35.1 minutes per game). Junior forward Caelynn Manning-Allen is tied for 12th in the league in rebounding (6.7 boards per game) and is sixth in blocked shots (1.8 per game).
Kansas hits the road for a Big 12 match-up at Iowa State on Saturday, Jan. 9. Tipoff inside Hilton Coliseum is slated for 7 p.m. Fans can follow along on the Jayhawks Television Network, as well as the Jayhawk IMG Sports Radio Network.
KUAthletics.com: The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.