* The Providence vs. Villanova game will be broadcast live on the BIG EAST Digital Network (BEDN). To watch the game, download the FOX Sports GO app to your mobile device or tablet.
FRIARS OPEN BIG EAST PLAY AGAINST VILLANOVA... The Providence College women’s basketball team will host Villanova in its 2014-15 BIG EAST Conference opener on Wednesday, Dec. 3. The game is scheduled to tip-off at 12:01 p.m. 8th ANNUAL PROJECT PROVIDENCE EVENT... The program will host its eighth Annual Project Providence event on Dec. 3, and over 1,000 elementary and middle-school students are expected to attend. The long-standing initiative features a morning session for participants to discuss the importance of fitness, good health and education. The students also participate in a variety of fun exercises and basketball drills. After lunch, the students are admitted to the game to cheer on the Friars.
PROVIDENCE VS. VILLANOVA WILL BE BROADCAST LIVE ON THE BIG EAST DIGITAL NETWORK... Wednesday’s game will be broadcast live on the BIG EAST Digital Network (BEDN), via FOX Sports GO. To watch the game, download the FOX Sports GO app on your mobile device or tablet. Play-by-play will be provided by John Rooke. Chris Fama will serve as the color analyst.
PROVIDENCE VS. VILLANOVA ALL-TIME... Villanova leads the all-time series vs. Providence, 40-25. The Wildcats have earned victories in six of the last seven meetings between the two programs, including each of the last three.
FRIARS AND WILDCATS AT ALUMNI HALL... The Friars and Wildcats have met 30 times at Alumni Hall/Mullaney Gymnasium in Providence, R.I. Providence leads the series vs. Villanova 18-12 on its home court, including victories in three of the last five meetings at the venue.
FAMILIAR FOE... The Friars have played the Wildcats 65 times during the history of the two women’s basketball programs. It marks the most games vs. any one opponent in the program’s history.
LAST TIME PROVIDENCE DEFEATED VILLANOVA... The Friars last defeated Villanova on Jan. 23, 2013 at Alumni Hall/Mullaney Gymnasium in Providence, R.I. On that day, Providence secured a 65-60 victory in overtime.
OVERTIME VS. THE WILDCATS... The Friars are 4-0 all-time vs. Villanova in games decided by overtime.
SEASON SERIES IN 2013-14... Villanova swept the Friars last season to build a three-game win streak heading into Wednesday’s match-up. On Jan. 4, the Wildcats defeated Providence, 68-59, in Villanova, Pa. On Feb. 5, the Friars fell to Villanova, 72-66, in Providence, R.I.
SCOUTING VILLANOVA... Villanova enters Wednesday’s game vs. Providence with a 2-4 overall record. The Wildcats won their most recent game on Nov. 30 vs. the College of Charleston, 60-41. Laura Burford leads the offense through six games with 12.0 points per game, while Caroline Coyer is the only other player averaging double figures, with 10.3 points per game. Kavunaa Edwards is the Wildcat’s top performer on the glass, hauling in an average of 6.8 boards per contest. The Wildcats were picked to finish third in the BIG EAST Preseason Coaches’ Poll, but have been without senior Emily Leer to this point, who was expected to be one of the team’s top contributors. Last season, Leer averaged 9.2 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game.
FRIARS FALL TO BRYANT DESPITE IMPRESSIVE PERFORMANCE FROM THE FIELD... The Friars fell to Bryant, 90-80, on Nov. 30 in Smithfield, R.I. Providence shot an impressive 57.4-percent from the floor vs. the Bulldogs, connecting on 35-of-61 field-goal attempts. It marks the highest field-goal percentage in a game for Providence since Nov. 28, 2006. On that day, the Friars shot 59.6-percent (31-52) vs. New Hampshire in a 79-53 victory.
MORE ON THE BRYANT GAME... Tori Rule led the Friars with 20 points in the loss to Bryant and also contributed four assists and four steals. Jenniqua Bailey netted a game-high 35 points for Bryant, including 23 in the second half. The Bulldogs took control of the game with a 10-24 performance from three-point range, including 8-16 in the first half. Bryant also out-scored the Friars by 11 points at the free-throw line and held a 36-28 advantage on the boards.
FRIARS 80 POINTS MARK SEASON HIGH... The Friars’ 80 points vs. Bryant mark a season high. It is the most points for PC in a single game since Jan.25 of last season vs. Seton Hall (87). Providence reached 80+ points in four games during the 2013-14 campaign, including two 100+ point games.
RULE MOVES INTO 29TH ALL-TIME IN CAREER SCORING... Senior Tori Rule recently became the 32nd player in program history to record 1,000 career points. She achieved the feat on Nov. 23 against Virginia Tech, as she hit her first bucket of the game at the 16:03 mark of the first half. Rule enters Wednesday’s game against Villanova with 1,036 career points, and ranks 29th all-time in scoring at Providence. Rule has played 91 career games with the Friars and has averaged 11.4 points per game. Through six games this season, Rule leads the Friars with 15.2 points per contest.
STREAKING... Senior forward Alexis Harris is the only Friar to record double digits in the scoring column during each game this season. She currently ranks second on the team in scoring with 14.3 points per game. Harris recorded a season-high 19 points in the season opener vs. Richmond on Nov. 14, and has scored 15+ points in four of the Friars’ six games.
DOUBLE-TROUBLE... Alexis Harris has registered a double-double in two of the Friars’ six games this season. She recorded 16 points and 12 rebounds in the Friars against Hartford on Nov. 20. She followed with 15 points and 11 rebounds against Virginia Tech on Nov. 23. Harris owns 14 double-doubles in her career. She recorded a team-best 12 double-doubles as a junior in 2013-14.
RULE IS PERFECT FROM THE LINE... Tori Rule is a perfect 10-10 from the free throw line this season through six games. Rule has hit 75-percent of her free-throw attempts during her career (157-209).
CAN’T SPELL FRIARS WITHOUT FRIAS... Rookie forward Brianna Frias has provided the Friars with valuable minutes off the bench in her first season with the squad. In six games, Frias has averaged 17.2 minutes per contest and has contributed 3.7 points and 4.7 rebounds per game. She recently recorded a season-high eight points on 4-4 shooting from the field vs. Bryant (Nov. 30), and added four rebounds and one assist. Frias has hauled in a season-best six rebounds in three games vs. Brown (Nov. 18), Virginia Tech (Nov. 23) and Dayton (Nov. 26).
BEAL RANKS FOURTH IN THE BIG EAST IN ASSISTS... Sophomore point guard Sarah Beal leads the Friars in assists with an average of 4.5 hand-outs per game. Beal also ranks fourth in the BIG EAST in assists. Through six games, Beal has dished 5+ assists three times, including a season-high seven dimes vs. Richmond (Nov. 14). Beal owns 162 assists during her career.
100-ASSISTS IN THE LAST DECADE... Sarah Beal finished the 2013-14 season with 135 assists. She is just the fourth Friar in the last decade to dish 100+ assists in a single season. Kendria Holmes achieved the feat in consecutive seasons (2006-07 and 2007-08) with 103 and 117 assists, respectively. Lola Wells ‘12 recorded 101 hand-outs in 2010-11. Symone Roberts ‘13 dished 135 assists during the 2012-13 slate. Through four games in 2014-15, Beal has dished 21 assists (5.35 apg). Additionally, she has dished 5+ assists in three of the Friars’ four games.
20/20... Sarah Beal and Tori Rule have each scored 20+ points in a game this season. Rule leads the way with two 20+ point games vs. Brown (20) and Bryant (20). Beal notched 24 points vs. Brown, marking the highest scoring effort by a Friar this season. Rule has 16 20+ point games in her career, while Beal has achieved the feat five times.
RULE NAMED TO BIG EAST WEEKLY HONOR ROLL... Senior guard Tori Rule was named to the BIG EAST Weekly Honor Roll on Monday, Nov. 24. Rule averaged a team-best 17.7 points and 2.3 steals in the Friars’ three games last week. She also shot a blistering 0.525 from the field, hitting 21-40 shot attempts, including 7-18 from three-point territory (0.389). She started the week with a season-high 20 points against Brown on Nov. 18. She went on to score 19 points vs. Hartford (11/20) and 14 points against Virginia Tech (11/23). On her first basket of the game vs. the Virginia Tech, Rule became the 32nd player in program history to reach the 1,000-point milestone. She also matched her season high with four steals against the Hokies.
GETTING ON THE OFFENSIVE BOARDS... On Nov. 23, the Friars recorded a season-high 19 offensive rebounds vs. Virginia Tech, compared to 18 boards on the defensive glass - for a total of 37 rebounds. Providence’s 19 offensive boards are the most in a single game since Dec. 18, 2013 vs. Dayton. Additionally, the last time Providence finished a game with more offensive rebounds and defensive rebounds dates back to Dec. 20, 2013 vs. Seton Hall. On that day, the Friars hauled in 13 offensive boards and 12 defensive rebounds.
ALLEGRA BOTTEGHI NOTCHES BACK-TO-BACK DOUBLE-DIGIT GAMES... Freshman guard Allegra Botteghi had a break-out performance vs. Virginia Tech on Nov. 23, as she recorded a season-high 15 points on 6-12 shooting from the field, including a 3-5 performance from beyond the three-point arc. Botteghi followed with 13 points against Dayton on Nov. 26 on 5-11 shooting from the field. It marked the first time in her collegiate career she has scored double figures in back-to-back games.
IISKOLA DISHES CAREER-HIGH SEVEN ASSISTS VS. HOKIES... Evi Iiskola dished a career-high seven assists vs. Virginia Tech (11/23). Her previous career high was four, which she recorded vs. Xavier (1/18/14) and Notre Dame (1/26/13). Iiskola is second on the team this season in assists (2.7 apg).
PROVIDENCE’S 44 BOARDS VS. BROWN... Providence out-rebounded Brown, 44-37, on Nov. 18. It marks the most rebounds for the Friars in a single-game since Dec. 21, 2013 vs. Rhode Island. On that day, Providence also recorded 44 rebounds. The Friars have hauled in 40+ rebounds in three of their six games.
ALEXIS HARRIS NAMED TO PRESEASON ALL-BIG EAST TEAM... Senior forward Alexis Harris was named to the 2014-15 Preseason All-BIG EAST Team, which is voted on by the league’s 10 head coaches. The announcement was made at BIG EAST Media Day in New York City on Oct. 22. Harris, an All-BIG EAST Second Team selection as a junior, averaged 14.0 points and 8.9 rebounds per game for the Friars in 2013-14. During BIG EAST Conference regular-season play, she remained a steady force with 15.1 points and 9.3 rebounds per game. Harris also notched 12 double-doubles last season, which are the most by any returning player in the BIG EAST. The forward reached double-figures in the scoring column 23 times and also posted 14 double-digit rebounding games. Furthermore, Harris was one of just four players in the BIG EAST to record multiple 30-point games. She hit for a career-high 31 points against UMass Lowell on Nov. 9, and 30 points against Seton Hall on Jan. 25.
SARAH BEAL NAMED PRESEASON ALL-BIG EAST HONORABLE MENTION... Sophomore guard Sarah Beal was named a Preseason All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention selection, which is voted on by the league’s 10 head coaches. The announcement was made at BIG EAST Media Day in New York City on Oct. 22. Beal enjoyed an impressive rookie campaign as the program’s floor general, averaging 11.8 points, 4.2 rebounds and a team-best 4.7 assists and 1.5 steals per game. Her 135 assists mark the third-highest total all-time by a freshman in program history. Beal handed out a career-best 13 assists vs. Butler on Jan. 28, 2014, which is one hand-out shy of the BIG EAST single-game record by a freshman and also marked the most assists in a single game by a league player during the 2013-14 season. Beal also proved to be an effective scorer, having recorded 21 double-digit scoring games. She notched a career-best 27 points against Marquette on Jan. 21.
FRIARS PICKED TO FINISH SIXTH IN BIG EAST PRESEASON POLL... Despite recording just seven wins a year ago and finishing 10th in the BIG EAST standings, the league’s head coaches picked the Friars to finish sixth in the conference in 2014-15. The roster is filled with more height, length and defensive presence and will join forces with a proven ability to score the basketball, with the likes of Alexis Harris, Sarah Beal and senior guard Tori Rule (Minneapolis, Minn.).
NATIONAL EXPOSURE... Providence College has three nationally-televised games on FOX Sports 1 this season, including its match-ups vs. Creighton (Jan. 16), Seton Hall (Feb. 6) and Villanova (Feb. 27). The Friars also have four games on the BIG EAST Digital Network. Games scheduled for broadcast on the league’s digital network may be viewed by downloading the FOX Sports GO app on your mobile device or tablet, and is free of charge.
MONTHLY COACH’S SHOW... The Friars will release a monthly Coach’s Show, called Friar Hoop Scoop, which will provide a behind-the-scenes look at the women’s basketball program this season. The show will be posted online during the first week of each month and may be viewed on each of the program’s social media platforms, including its YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/ProvidenceCollegeWBB.
WHAT’S NEXT... Providence College will return to action with back-to-back home games this weekend against UMass Lowell (Dec. 6) and Rhode Island (Dec. 7). Five of the Friars’ seven games during the month of December will be played at Alumni Hall.
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