LEXINGTON, Ky. - The No. 10/12 Kentucky women's basketball team looks to continue its winning ways when it travels to Auburn, Ala., on Sunday, Jan. 19 to take on Auburn at 1 p.m. CT/2 p.m. ET in Auburn Arena. The game will be televised live on SEC TV with Cara Capuano and LaChina Robinson calling the action. Fans can also watch a live video stream on WatchESPN, listen to the UK IMG Sports Radio Network with Neil Price or follow Twitter updates on @UKHoopCats.
For tickets go to www.auburntigers.com.
The Wildcats (14-3, 2-2 Southeastern Conference) are coming off a bye-week as their last game was an 80-69 win over Missouri on Sunday. Overall, UK is 8-2 at home and 5-1 away from home, including 1-1 on the road in SEC play. UK is averaging 82.5 points per game away from Lexington, with four players (Kastine Evans, Jennifer O'Neill, DeNesha Stallworth and Samarie Walker) averaging 10.5 points or more.
"We have a very tough game ahead with a very good Auburn team and they pose a lot of problems for you there," UK Hoops head coach Matthew Mitchell said. "They are very, very aggressive defensively, forcing 20 turnovers a game in conference play and they throw a lot of multiple looks your way. They are long, athletic, aggressive defenders and can make it really tough on you to score. They've done a great job defensively. I think, Tyrese Tanner is going be one of the top players in the conference. She's really improved since last year, just an explosive athlete, scorer, really does a lot of things well. Just their overall team is a really tough, explosive team. So going on the road in this league is always tough. It will be tough Sunday afternoon and we'll have to prepare well to win."
This marks just the 43rd all-time meeting against Auburn. The Tigers lead the all-time series 25-17, including an 11-6 advantage when playing in Auburn. However, the Wildcats have been successful as of late vs. the Tigers as they have won the last five games by an average of +23.6 points. The Cats have won two in a row on the road at Auburn, the last loss coming on Feb. 28, 2010 (65-53). Last season in Lexington, UK defeated the Tigers, 97-53, the most points scored against an Auburn team in program history. The 44-point victory also ranked as the third-largest margin of victory against an SEC opponent in school history.
Senior DeNesha Stallworth (Richmond, Calif.) leads a very balanced scoring attack this season as one of six players in double-figures. The 6-foot-3 forward averages 12.8 points per game, to go along with 6.3 rebounds per game. Junior point guard Jennifer O'Neill (Bronx, N.Y.) narrowly follows Stallworth with 12.5 ppg, while senior guard Kastine Evans (Salem, Conn.) drops in 11.2 ppg. Senior forward Samarie Walker (West Carrollton, Ohio), sophomore point guard Janee Thompson and junior guard Bria Goss (Indianapolis) round out the double-digit scorers with 10.5, 10.3 and 10.1 points per game, respectively. Walker is the SEC's leading rebounder with 9.8 rebounds per game, while Goss leads the league and ranks 11th nationally in free-throw shooting percentage at 91.2 percent (52-of-57).
Auburn enters Sunday's game at 11-6 on the season and 2-2 in SEC play after wins over Mississippi State (82-74) and Alabama (61-39) and losses to Vanderbilt (74-65) and South Carolina (72-60).
The Tigers are 6-2 at home, 3-3 on the road and 2-1 on a neutral court this season.
In SEC games, Auburn ranks first in steals (11.5), second in blocked shots (6.8), third in rebounding defense (34.8) and fourth in assists (14.0).
Senior guard/forward Tyrese Tanner, who led the team in scoring last season, once again leads Auburn in scoring and rebounding with 16.4 points and 6.6 rebounds per game. Hasina Muhammad and Brandy Montgomery are the other Tigers averaging double-figures at 12.3 and 11.2 points per game, respectively.
This week marks the third annual SEC "We Back Pat" week. The week will feature 19 conference matchups. Since its inception all 14 SEC schools have participated annually in the week. This year, the SEC is expecting more than 75 teams nationally to participate in the campaign. Kentucky's "We Back Pat" home games are Thursday, Jan. 23 vs. Alabama and Sunday, Jan. 26 vs. Arkansas. Visit www.patsummitt.org to donate or for more information.
Information provided by UK Athletics
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