UCF vs. Memphis Pre-Game Notes

Feb. 9, 2008

Complete Release in PDF Format

Record: 8-14, 1-8 C-USA
Ranking: NR/NR
Last Game: Lost to UAB, 85-67 (H)
Coach: Joi Williams (USF, ¡¥88)
Overall Record: 62-75 (5th Season)
Record at UCF: 8-14 (1st Season)
Record vs. Memphis: Never Met
Series Record: UCF leads 3-2

Record: 6-16, 3-6 C-USA
Ranking: NR/NR
Last Game: Lost to Southern Miss, 76-56 (A)
Coach: Blair Savage-Lansden (Arkansas, ¡¥94)
Overall Record: 26-84 (4th Season)
Record at Memphis: Same
Record vs. UCF: 1-3

The UCF women¡¦s basketball team looks to break the school¡¦s attendance record of 1,457 fans on Saturday when it plays host to Memphis in the final game of a four-game homestand. Tip-off in the New UCF Arena is slated for 5 p.m. and the game will be carried live on UCFAthletics.com with Scott Adams on the call.

Saturday¡¦s contest is UCF's "Think Pink" game to help raise breast cancer awareness. The WBCA's "Think Pink" initiative is a global, unified effort for the WBCA's nation of coaches to assist in raising breast cancer awareness on the court, across campuses, in communities and beyond. In 2007, more than 120 schools unified for this effort and helped make teh inaugural year of "Think Pink" a success. More than 900 women's basketball teams across the country are participating in "Think Pink" week, which takes place Feb. 8-17.

The Knights are looking to break a four-game losing streak, having dropped an 85-67 decision to UAB on Thursday. Freshman forward Emma Cannon scored a career-high 24 points and notched her 10th double-double of the season with 11 rebounds. Freshman forward/center Tia Lewis, the nation's leader in double-doubles by a freshman, charted her 14th double-dip of the year with 10 points and 15 rebounds.

Lewis leads the team with 12.6 points per game, which ranks 12th in Conference USA, and is the league's leading rebounder with 12.0 boards per game. Cannon follows in the scoring colun with 11.8 ppg and is fourth in C-USA with 9.4 rpg. Freshman guard Marshay White, who has scored in double figures in four consecutive games, adds 11.2 ppg.

As a team, UCF leads Conference USA in rebounding margin with a +5.8 edge on the glass. The Knights are second in the league in rebounding offense, averaging 42.7 boards per game, and have won the rebound battle 14 times this year.


UCFG - 21 Chesie Wiley (5-7, Fr.) 7.2 ppg, 1.6 rpgG - 23 Jelisa Caldwell (5-10, Fr.) 6.2 ppg, 2.3 rpgG - 33 Marshay White (5-6, Fr.) 11.2 ppg, 3.2 rpgF - 24 Emma Cannon (6-2, Fr.) 11.8 ppg, 9.4 rpgF - 42 Tia Lewis (6-3, Fr.) 12.6 ppg, 12.0 rpg
MemphisG - 5 Paris Leonard (5-8, Jr.) 11.5 ppg, 4.4 rpgG - 11 Alex Winchell (5-7, Fr.) 4.3 ppg, 1.4 rpgG - 21 Jessica Hall (5-8, Jr.) 12.5 ppg, 3.3 rpgF - 41 Aroha Jennings (5-11, Sr.) 8.5 ppg, 4.5 rpgF - 42 Ashley Thornton (6-0, Jr.) 10.0 ppg, 7.1 rpg="https://ucfknights.com/http:%3E%3C/ahref="http:>="https://ucfknights.com/http:%3E%3C/ahref="http:>


  • Memphis comes to Orlando having lost four of its last five games after falling to Southern Miss, 76-56, on Thursday night in Hattiesburg, Miss. The Lady Tigers are 6-16 overall and 3-6 in Conference USA play. Memphis is near the bottom of most of the league¡¦s statistical categories, including allowing its opponents to average 75.1 ppg and 42.9 rpg. Junior guard Jessica Hall leads the team and ranks 14th in Conference USA in scoring with 12.6 ppg. Junior guard Paris Leonard adds 11.5 ppg as one of four Lady Tigers averaging double-figure point totals. Sophomore guard LaToya Bullard and junior forward Ashley Thornton follow with 10.2 and 10.0 ppg, respectively. Thornton is the squad's leading rebounder, ranking ninth in the league with 7.1 boards per game.

Series Record

  • The Knights and Lady Tigers meet for the sixth time in school history with UCF holding a 3-2 advantage in the all-time series. The two teams split the season series last year with the Knights taking a 77-62 decision in Orlando and the Lady Tigers winning 80-73 in Memphis. UCF is 3-1 all-time vs. Memphis since joining Conference USA prior to the 2005-06 season.

The Coaches

  • UCF - Joi Williams is in her first season at the helm of the UCF program and the Golden Knights are 8-14 through 22 games. Williams comes to UCF after a successful career at Murray State University (Murray, Ky.), where she turned around the Racers program and led the team to a 15-5 Ohio Valley Conference record her final season and an appearance in the Women¡¦s NIT.
  • Memphis- Blair Savage-Lansden, a 1994 graduate of the University of Arkansas, is in her fourth season at the helm of the Memphis program after serving as an assistant coach for the Lady Tigers from 1994-2003.

Four-Game Homestand a Rarity for UCF Basketball

  • When the UCF women's basketball team takes the court on Saturday, it will be tipping off the final game of a rare four-game conference homestand.

It marks just the second time since the team joined Conference USA prior to the 2005-06 campaign that the Knights will play host to four consecutive C-USA games. The Knights played four straight league contests during the 2005-06 season, spanning from Jan. 13, 2006 to Jan. 22, 2006. UCF went 2-2 during that stretch.

In the program's history, beginning with the 1977-78 season, UCF has only played four consecutive conference home contests on five occasions. Those homestands included stints in the New South Women's Athletic Conference and the American South Conference.

Twenty-Two Games, 12 Starting Lineups

  • With 11 newcomers on the 2007-08 roster, the Knights have been searching for consistency in the starting lineup this season. In 22 games this year, Coach Joi Williams has used 12 different starting lineups with Tia Lewis being the only constant during that span. Here is the breakdown:
  • Texas Tech: Cannon, Lewis, Mealing, Wiley, Caldwell (1)
  • Coppin State: Cannon, Lewis, Mealing, Wiley, White (2)
  • North Florida: Cannon, Lewis, Wiley, Caldwell, White (3)
  • Rider: Cannon, Lewis, Wiley, Caldwell, White (3)
  • La Salle: Cannon, Lewis, Daniels, Wiley, White (4)
  • Bethune Cookman: Cannon, Lewis, Daniels, Wiley, White (5)
  • Miami (Fla.): Cannon, Lewis, Daniels, Wiley, White (5)
  • Florida Gulf Coast: Cannon, Lewis, Daniels, Caldwell, White (6)
  • Southeastern Louisiana: Cannon, Lewis, Daniels, Mealing, Caldwell (7)
  • Appalachian State: Cannon, Lewis, Daniels, Mealing, Caldwell (7)
  • UNC-Greensboro: Cannon, Lewis, Mealing, Wiley, White (2)
  • Stetson: Cannon, Lewis, Daniels, Wiley, White (5)
  • Southern Miss: Cannon, Lewis, Daniels, Wiley, White (5)
  • SMU: Daniels, Mealing, Wiley, White, Lewis (8)
  • Tulsa: Lewis, Akers, Daniels, Wiley, White (9)
  • Houston: Lewis, Akers, Daniels, Wiley, White (9)
  • Rice: Lewis, Akers, Daniels, Long, White (10)
  • Southern Miss: Lewis, Akers, Daniels, Long, White (10)
  • Marshall: Lewis, Akers, Long, Wiley, White (11)
  • East Carolina: Lewis, Akers, Mealing, Wiley, White (12)
  • UAB: Cannon, Lewis, Wiley, Caldwell, White (3)

Hold 'Em Defense, Hold 'Em

  • One of the main reasons that Coach Joi Williams' team has been successful this season is the fact that the Knights have turned up the defensive intensity. UCF has held 20 of its 22 opponents this season to 50 percent shooting or less, including 11 of their last 12 opponents.
  • The Knights have held 11 opponents to under 40 percent shooting this season.
  • UCF is 5-0 this season when holding its opponents to 60 points or fewer.

Trends of the Wins

  • In eight wins this season, UCF is averaging 72.1 ppg, while holding its opponents to 57.1 ppg. The Knights' scoring margin in their wins is +14.5. In 14 losses this season, UCF is averaging just 65.1 ppg, while allowing its opponents to score 77.1 ppg. The Knights' scoring margin in their losses is -12.0.
  • In eight wins this season, UCF is averaging 47.9 rebounds per game and winning the rebound margin by +13.6 boards per game. In 14 losses, the Knights are averaging 39.8 boards per game with a +1.3 rebound margin.
  • In eight wins, UCF is averaging 20.5 turnovers, while giving up 23.2 turnovers in 14 losses.
  • In eight wins, the Knights are coming up with 9.3 steals per game, while coming up with just 8.4 swipes in 14 losses this season.
  • In eight wins this season, UCF is shooting 44.3 percent from the floor. In 14 losses, the Knights are connecting on just 39.8 percent of their shots.
  • In eight wins, the Knights are limiting their opponents to just 35.1 percent shooting. In 14 losses, UCF has allowed its opponents to connect on 44.7 percent of their shots.

Crowd Control

  • While the UCF women's basketball team pushes to break the school's attendance record on Saturday vs. Memphis, the Knights have already drawn great attendance this season. In fact, in 12 home games this season, UCF has drawn four of the top 20 crowds in school history. Last Saturday's game with East Carolina marked the largest crowd in school history and just the second time in program annals that the Knights drew 1,000 or more fans for a single game.

Lewis, Cannon Causing Double Trouble for UCF Opponents

  • Freshmen Emma Cannon and Tia Lewis have been prolific this season at racking up double-doubles. Lewis is tied for first in Conference USA with 14 double-doubles while Cannon is fourth in the league with 10 double-dips. UCF leads all schools in the league with 24 total double-doubles on the year. The pair have combined to record double-doubles in the same game on seven occasions this season. According to an unofficial poll by conference sports information directors, Lewis is the nation's leader in double-doubles by a freshman.

Tia Lewis Tied for Second in the Nation in Rebounding

  • Freshman forward/center Tia Lewis currently ranks tied for second in the nation in rebounding, according to the latest national statistics released Tuesday by the NCAA offices in Indianapolis, Ind. Lewis also ranks 25th nationally in field-goal percentage and is the only Conference USA player to rank in the top 25 of two national statistical categories.

Lewis averages 12.0 rebounds per game this season and is one of only two players in Conference USA to average a double-double. She has recorded double-figure rebounds in 17 of the team¡¦s 22 games this season, including 10 of the last 12 contests and 15 of her last 18. Lewis has been the team's leading rebounder in 16 games this season.

Lewis, who is the league¡¦s leading rebounder, is the only C-USA freshman to rank in the conference¡¦s top 12 in both scoring and rebounding. She averages a squad-best 12.6 ppg as one of three Knights who average in double-figure scoring.

Akers Hosts Block Party for UCF Opponents

  • Junior center Jackie Akers, one of two veterans on this year¡¦s squad, sat out nine games earlier this season due to injury, but since she has returned, the Cape Coral, Fla., native has been hosting a block party for UCF opponents. Despite playing in just 12 of the team¡¦s 22 games this season, Akers leads the team in blocks with 1.7 rejections per game. Akers has posted at least two blocks in six of her last eight games, and has recorded three or more rejections in three of those games.

"Three Mania"

  • UCF has hit a three-pointer in 18 consecutive games and 20 of 22 contests this season. The Knights have connected on six or more three pointers on seven occasions this season, including a season-high eight treys against Miami on Dec. 2, 2007.