Women's Basketball Game At Sacred Heart Thursday At 5 P.M. Kicks Off NEC Rivalry Week

Game #22
Quinnipiac University Bobcats (9-12, 4-6 NEC) vs.
Sacred Heart University Pioneers (16-5, 9-1 NEC)
Thursday, February 4, 2010 - 5:00 p.m.
Fairfield, Conn. - William H. Pitt Center

Thursday's Game
The Quinnipiac University women's basketball team wraps up a three-game road trip against in-state rival Sacred Heart Thursday at 5 p.m. The Bobcats and Pioneers are set to tip-off from the William H. Pitt Center in Fairfield, Conn., in a game that will be seen live on Connecticut Sports Network, Fox College Sports, ESPN Full Court, ESPN360.com and DirecTV Channel 617. Quinnipiac enters the weekend eighth in the Northeast Conference standings, while Sacred Heart sits in a tie for first. The game is part of the NEC's Rivalry Week and is the first of a home-and-home series between the two teams that will continue Saturday afternoon in Hamden.

Scouting the Pioneers
Sacred Heart is currently tied for first in the NEC with a 9-1 record in league play, and is 16-5 overall. The Pioneers have lost just one conference game in the last two seasons with the defeat coming to CCSU, 67-64, at home on Jan. 21. Sacred Heart currently has four players averaging double figures in scoring with last season's NEC Player of the Year Alisa Apo leading the way with 16.0 points per game. Third on the team in scoring at nearly 12 points per game, junior guard Maggie Cosgrove recently became the program's all-time leader in three-point field goals and is the nation's top shooter from downtown this season, shooting .551 from behind the arc.

Last Time Out
The Bobcats and Pioneers last played on Feb. 9, 2009 with Sacred Heart winning by 16 points, 72-56. The Pioneers swept the Bobcats last season and have not lost to Quinnipiac at the Pitt Center dating back to the 2000-01 season. That 72-69 win for the Bobcats came in overtime. Sacred Heart comes into the game with a 30-23 advantage in the all-time series.

As well as the numerous television broadcasts, Thursday's game can be heard live on AM 1220 WQUN and the WQUN.com webstream. Bill Schweizer will provide play-by-play, while Bill Mecca and Bob Tipson will add color analysis. Fans can also follow the action using live stats. Both can be accessed by clicking appropriate links above.

Career Day
Redshirt junior Courtney Kaminski (Dudley, Mass.) scored a career-high 28 points and added 11 rebounds in the loss to Mount St. Mary's on Saturday. The Quinnipiac center's team-leading seventh double-double of the season was powered by a dominating first-half performance. Kaminski scored 24 of her 28 points in the first period. She also was a perfect 10-for-10 from the free-throw line in the game.

Trying to Break the Slump
Losing is not something Quinnipiac basketball has become accustomed to since head coach Tricia Fabbri took over 15 years ago. The current five-game losing streak is the longest single-season slump for the program in a decade. The last time the Bobcats dropped five straight in a season was during the 1999-2000 season.

Team Defense
Despite the five-game skid and Mount shooting 50.8 percent from the floor on Saturday, the Bobcats are still the top team in the NEC in field-goal defense. Quinnipiac is holding its opponents to an average of .357 shooting this season. The Bobcats have been ranked amongst the top teams in the nation throughout the season in this field.

Top of the Charts
The Bobcats also rank at the top of three NEC statistical categories in 2009-10.Quinnipiac is the conference's top team in total rebounds (43.2), defensive rebounds (29.05) and blocked shots (4.38). The 43.2 rebounds are nearly three more boards per game than the next closest team in the NEC this season.

Meeting of the Free-Throw Titans
Thursday's game will mark the meeting of just more than Connecticut rivals, it will be the first of consecutive meetings between the top two free-throw shooting teams in the NEC. Sacred Heart holds the slimmest of advantages over Quinnipiac, shooting .725 from the line this season, while the Bobcats trail by one-thousandth of a point at .724.

Bench Points
Sophomore Brittany Capozziello (Fairfield, Conn.) and juniors Ashley Adams (Tolland, Conn.) and Mia Picillo (Derry, N.H,) each came off the bench against the Mount to add significant minutes. Each matched their career highs in points in the game as well.