Kansas faces Alabama in Big 12/SEC Challenge
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas women’s basketball continues its road swing at Alabama on Sunday, Dec. 4, for the 2016 Big 12/SEC Challenge. The Jayhawks’ bout with the Crimson Tide is one of five matchups between the Big 12 and Southeastern Conferences, two of the nation’s premier women’s basketball leagues. Tipoff is slated for 11 a.m. CT, on the SEC Network and the Jayhawk Radio Network.
- The Jayhawks and Crimson Tide have met three times on the hardwood. Alabama leads the series 2-1 and Sunday’s matchup is just the second meeting in Tuscaloosa.
- The Jayhawks have faced 12 of 14 programs from the SEC and are 59-68 against teams from that league.
- In the month of December, the Jayhawks own an overall mark of 186-81 (.696). Under head coach Brandon Schneider Kansas is 2-5 in the 12th month of the year.
- The Jayhawks began the game against North Dakota with 23 points behind 67 percent (8-of-12) shooting from the field in the opening quarter, marking first-period-highs in points and shooting percentage this season.
- KU is averaging 22.8 points off the bench this season. The Jayhawks’ reserves were responsible for a season-high 37 points in an overtime win over North Dakota (11/27).
- Junior guard Chayla Cheadle led KU’s offense at Creighton (11/30) after finishing the night with 12 points, her second double-digit scoring effort of the season. Both of Cheadle’s double-figure performances have come on the road.
ABOUT THE BIG 12/SEC CHALLENGE
The 2016 SEC/Big 12 Challenge tips off this weekend and features three days of quality matchups between two of the nation’s premier conferences. The Challenge was created in 2014 with two games at a neutral site. This season is the first to feature 10 games at campus sites with each conference hosting five games a year, ensuring fans can participate in creating a dynamic home atmosphere.
The Big 12 and SEC sent a combined 17 teams to 2016 postseason play, including 15 in the NCAA Tournament. Since 2000, the SEC and Big 12 are the top two conferences in NCAA Tournament appearances with a combined 218 (SEC – 111, Big 12 – 107).
About the Jayhawks
Kansas’ three-game win streak was halted after Creighton handed the Jayhawks their first road loss of the season, a 69-49 decision, on Wednesday night. KU fell to a 3-3 record on the season following the loss to the Bluejays.
Despite its lowest scoring output of the season, junior guard Chayla Cheadle led Kansas’ offense with 12 points against Creighton (11/30), her second double-digit scoring effort of the season. Cheadle is averaging 8.7 points per game, marking the third-best scoring average on the squad, and connecting on 46.7 percent of her attempts from the field. Cheadle has started all six games this year and is averaging 26 minutes per contest. Redshirt sophomore guard McKenzie Calvert and redshirt junior guard Jessica Washington remain KU’s leading scorers with 15.7 and 10.6 points per game, respectively.
The Jayhawks are averaging 64 points per contest, while shooting 35.1 percent from the field and 30.7 percent from beyond the 3-point arc. Defensively, Kansas has grabbed 40.2 rebounds and has swiped 10.8 steals per game, along with 4.5 blocks per contest.
Scouting the Crimson Tide
Alabama owns a perfect 6-0 record in 2016-17 and have played every game this season at home. The meeting between Kansas and the Crimson Tide is Alabama’s seventh-straight home game to start the year.
The Crimson Tide returns seven letterwinners from a season ago, including junior guards Hannah Cook and Meoshonti Knight, who led Alabama’s offense last season with 12.0 and 10.1 points per game, respectively. The Tide finished last season 15-16 and 4-12 in SEC play.
Alabama has four averaging double digits six games into the season, led by Knight’s 13.3 points per game. Sophomore guard Shaquera Wade is just behind with 12.8 points per game, while Cook and freshman guard Jordan Lewis are averaging 11.5 and 10.8 points, respectively.
This season, Alabama is averaging 84.8 points per game behind a 48.7 percent field percentage. From beyond the 3-point line, the Crimson Tide are connecting on 31.6 percent of their attempts. Defensively, Alabama is grabbing 50.2 boards and 12.3 steals per game, along with swatting away 4.7 blocks per contest.
This Day in Kansas Women’s Basketball History
Record on Dec. 4: 7-4
Sunday’s game against Alabama is the 12th contest to be played on Dec. 4 in program history. On Dec. 4, 2010, Kansas defeated SMU on the road, 73-65. In a homecoming game for Monica Engelman, the San Antonio native led the Jayhawks nearly across the board with 17 points, eight rebounds and four assists.
Kansas women’s basketball suffered its first road loss of the season after Creighton maintained its lead for four quarters, and defeated the Jayhawks, 69-49, on Wednesday night inside D.J. Sokol Arena.
Kansas (3-3) recorded its lowest offensive output of the 2016-17 season after netting just 49 points. Junior guard Chayla Cheadle led Kansas with 12 points, her second double-digit scoring effort of the season. Both of Cheadle’s double-figure performances have come on the road. Redshirt sophomore guard McKenzie Calvert and sophomore Aisia Robertson added nine points each.
Creighton (3-3) handed the Jayhawks their first road loss of the year after hosting just its second home game of the season. Each time Kansas attempted to mount a comeback and came within a possession, the home team stormed back ahead. Senior guard Marissa Janning led all scorers with 15 points, as four Bluejays ended the night in double figures. Sophomore forward Audrey Farber added 13 points, while senior guard MC McGrory and senior forward Brianna Rollerson contributed 11 and 10 points, respectively.
Swipe and Score
The Jayhawks are averaging 17.0 points per game off of their opponents’ turnovers. Kansas is forcing 20 turnovers per contest, including 10.8 steals. Redshirt sophomore guard McKenzie Calvert leads the squad with 13 steals, while redshirt junior guard Jessica Washington and sophomore guard Aisia Robertson each have nine steals each this year.
Kansas returns to Allen Fieldhouse on Wednesday, Dec. 7 to host Harvard. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m. on the Jayhawk Television Network/ESPN3 and the Jayhawk Radio Network.
KUAthletics.com: The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.