OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - The Iowa State women’s basketball team will face 11th-ranked and Big 12 regular-season champion Oklahoma in the title game of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship at 6 p.m. Saturday at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City, Okla. ... it marks the fourth Big 12 Championship game for the Cyclones and the first since winning back-to-back titles in 2000 and 2001 ... head coach Bill Fennelly recorded his 18th Big 12 Tournament victory over Texas A&M, which is the most among active Big 12 coaches ... ISU has won its last eight straight and nine out of the last 10 ... senior Megan Ronhovde became the 18th player in ISU history to record 1,000 career points, eclipsing the mark at Baylor ... ISU head coach Bill Fennelly earned his 250th victory at the helm of the Cyclone program with the win over Missouri on Feb. 4 and his 400th career win in the season opener vs. Cal State Fullerton ... the Cyclones are now 25-7 overall and finished 10-6 in the Big 12 to tie Nebraska for fourth place in the final Big 12 standings ... the Cyclones claimed their eighth 20-win season in school history and the seventh under Fennelly ... Iowa State has reached 25 wins for the first time since 2001 when it went 27-6 ... the Cyclones have earned 25 wins in five seasons in school history, all under Fennelly ... ISU finished the home season with a 15-1 record at Hilton, while ISU was 5-6 in true road games ... the Cyclones wrapped up the non-conference slate at 12-1 overall ... Iowa State fell, 69-49, at then-sixth ranked Oklahoma in their only regular-season meeting in Norman, Okla., on Jan. 24 ... the Cyclones have gone 10-2 since falling to the Sooners, while the Sooners have gone 8-3 since that game ... senior All-America candidate Lyndsey Medders missed games at Nebraska and Baylor and played limited minutes against Missouri due to a minor concussion ... in the Cyclones’ win over Loyola Marymount, Medders broke the Iowa State career assist record and now has 694 ... Medders is ISU’s leading scorers with 12.7 points per game ... Nicky Wieben is ISU’s second leading scorer with 12.1 ppg and has 1.9 blocks per game ... Toccara Ross continues to lead the Cyclones on the glass with 7.4 rpg.
On the Tube
The championship game of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Tournament on Saturday, March 10, will be televised nationally by Fox Sports Net (cable channel 40 in Ames), check your local listings ... Kevin Eschenfelder (play-by-play) and Debbie Antonelli (color) will be calling the action ... Fox Sports Net Midwest will show the game live in Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas (outside the KC metro area).
On the Air
The game will be broadcast live on the Cyclone Radio Network (1430 AM in Ames) ... every game is broadcast live on the internet at Cyclones.com ... broadcasts will be streamed by Yahoo! Sports and will cost $4.95 per month, which will include broadcasts of football, men’s basketball and the Coaches shows.
Last Time Out
Iowa State drilled 10 3-pointers and held No. 13 Texas A&M to 36.2 percent from the floor en route to a 57-51 win over the Aggies Wednesday night in the semifinals of the Big 12 Championship ... ISU, winners of eight-straight, improved to 25-7 and advanced to the title game of the Phillips 66 Big 12 Championship Saturday night ... the Cyclones hung tough with the Aggies early, routinely breaking their press for easy buckets and being aggressive on the offensive glass ... a Megan Ronhovde 3-pointer at the 12:05 mark in the opening period gave ISU its first lead at 15-14 ... however, Takia Starks made a trey to spark a 7-0 A&M run to move the Aggies out in front 21-15 ... the Cyclones stormed right back with an 8-0 run behind a pair of deep 3-pointers by Lyndsey Medders and Heather Ezell, helping the Cyclones go up 25-23 with 4:29 left in the first half ... another Ezell 3-pointer gave ISU a 28-25 halftime lead ... despite the 3-point cushion at the break, the Cyclones had plenty of chances to improve their lead, but 12 first half turnovers hurt ISU ... However, ISU offset its ballhandling deficiencies by shooting 45.8 percent from the floor and grabbing seven offensive caroms in the opening period ... ISU continued its hot shooting from beyond the arc in the opening moments of the second half ... Amanda Nisleit and Ronhovde both hit treys to open up a 34-28 Cyclone lead ... two more treys by Lacey and Ronhovde gave ISU its biggest lead at 40-32 with 13:56 left in the game ... another trey by Ezell made it eight-straight 3-pointers for the Cyclones, as ISU went up 43-35 with 11:54 remaining ... the Aggies quickly answered by mounting a 6-0 run to cut the deficit to two points (43-41) with 9:20 left ... A’Quonesia Franklin had four points, including a trey, in the run ... after A&M tied the game at 47-all, Nicky Wieben and Toccara Ross hit shots on back-to-back possessions to give ISU a 51-47 edge with 4:23 left ... Ross then made a driving lay-up off a Lacey dish to give ISU a 55-48 lead with under three minutes left ... ISU iced the game from then on at the free-throw line ... Ezell and Lacey paced ISU with 11 points each, as the Cyclones advance to their fourth Big 12 Tournament title game and first since 2001 ... Medders added eight points and six points in the win ... Wieben had seven points and three blocks, breaking her own single-season school mark for rejections with 60.
About the Cyclones
Iowa State has used six different starting lineups this season ... ISU is 25-7 on the year and finished 10-6 in the Big 12 ... ISU was 15-1 at Hilton Coliseum this year and 5-0 on neutral courts ... ISU is outscoring opponents by a margin of +8.1, and is averaging 68.1 ppg ... the Cyclones are shooting 42.4 percent from the field and 34.4 percent from three-point range ... ISU has outrebounded opponents with a +3.4 margin ... Iowa State is in its 34th season of women’s basketball and holds a 495-470 overall record ... the 2006-07 Iowa State roster has 14 active players on it, the largest number on an ISU roster to start the season since 2001-02 when the Cyclones had 15 players ... the Cyclones are coming off an 18-13 season in which they made it to the second round of the WNIT for their ninth postseason appearance in the last 10 years.
About the Sooners
No. 6 Oklahoma are 25-4 on the year and tied for the regular-season Big 12 title with Texas A&M with a 13-3 league record ... OU defeated Texas, 67-58, and Baylor, 78-64, to advance to the Big 12 Championship game against the Cyclones ... the Sooners are led by consensus All-American Courtney Paris ... Paris leads OU with 23.6 points, 16 rebounds and 3.5 blocks per game this season ... seniors Chelsi Welch (9.4) and Leah Rush (9.2) are the Sooners’ second and third leading scorers ... as a team, the Sooners are averaging 76.8 points per game and are shooting 46.9 percent from the field ... OU has held opponents to 61.1 points per game for a +15.7 scoring margin ... the Sooners average 5.3 three-pointers per contest at a 35.8 percent clip ... head coach Sherri Coale is in her 11th season at Oklahoma with a 229-117 career record.
Oklahoma leads the all-time series with the Cyclones, 27-17 ... but the series is tied 3-3 on a neutral court ... ISU fell to the Sooners, 78-74, in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Tournament last season in Dallas ... in that game, ISU led 74-73, but OU’s Erin Higgins hit a three-pointer with 49 seconds left to put the Sooners ahead for good ... Iowa State fell, 69-49, in Norman this season on Jan. 24 ... Iowa State has won 10 of the last 14 meetings, but OU has won four of the last six.
The Cyclones have won their last three meetings against top 25 teams ... Iowa State’s first-round tournament win over Kansas State was ISU’s first over the Wildcat in six tries at the Big 12 Tournament ... ISU’s 72-68 win at Texas Tech was the first in school history for the Cyclones in Lubbock ... ISU has reached 25 wins for just the fifth time in school history, all under the direction of head coach Bill Fennelly ... ISU has now won eight straight, which is the longest current winning streak in the Big 12, and nine out of its last 10, including its last two on the road ... the Cyclones carry a 22 RPI as of March 9, and have a 5-3 record against teams in the current RPI top 50 according to collegerpi.com, and an 10-5 mark against teams in the top 80 ... with a 57-51 win over 13th ranked Texas A&M in the Big 12 semifinals, Iowa State improved to 4-3 on the season against ranked teams, 40-104 all-time and 34-45 against top 25 squads under Fennelly.
ISU in the Big 12 Tourney
Iowa State finished one Big 12 Northern Division win shy of Nebraska, giving the Huskers the tiebreaker for the fourth seed in the Big 12 Tournament ... ISU is 14-5 in Big 12 Tournament games since 2000 and won back-to-back titles in 2000 and 2001 ... ISU is 2-1 in Big 12 Tournament Championship contests ... ISU won it in back-to-back seasons in 2000 and 2001 ... the Cyclones defeated Oklahoma, 68-65 in the 2001 title game in Kansas City, Mo.
Big 12 Postseason Honors
Senior Lyndsey Medders was named to the All-Big 12 First Team, while sophomore Nicky Wieben was an honorable-mention pick ... it marked the third straight year that at least two Cyclones have earned Big 12 postseason honors ... Medders earned her second consecutive All-Big 12 honor, while Wieben’s award was the first of her career.
Medders Tabbed a WBCA/Kodak All-America Finalist
Senior Lyndsey Medders was one of five Big 12 players to be named a WBCA/Kodak All-America finalist, the organization announced on Thursday ... Medders was one of seven players selected in Region 5 ... Medders is ISU’s leading scorer with 12.7 ppg and ranks in the top five nationally in assists per game with 6.4.
Ten different Cyclones have hit a three-pointer this season ... sophomore Nicky Wieben has scored in double figures in 21 games and has led ISU in scoring in 12 games this season ... Wieben has two double-doubles on the year, while junior Toccara Ross has logged four double-doubles ... Ross has been in double figures in 18 games this years and has led the Cyclones on the glass in 15 contests ... Iowa State is 14-2 this season when holding opponents under 60 points, while the Cyclones are 23-2 when scoring 60 points or better.
Iowa State has made at least one three-pointer in 366 consecutive regular-season games dating back to 1995 ... that streak now ranks second in the nation, as Cleveland State failed to hit a long-range try in their game on Feb. 3, ending its streak at an NCAA record 408 consecutive games and Stanford ended its streak at 403 on Feb. 22 ... Canisius College now unofficially holds the longest current streak at 390 consecutive games ... the ISU school record for three-pointers made in a game is 18 (vs. Missouri, Feb. 19, 2000), which ISU challenged in their game against Virginia Tech, hitting 14-of-27 on the contest.
Lyndsey Medders has passed out an assist in every game she has played at Iowa State ... that is a span of 119 consecutive games through four years ... her single-game high was a school-record 16 assists vs. IPFW last season ... she ranks now holds the single-season class records for freshmen, sophomores, juniors and seniors ... she now has 191 this season, rewriting Stacy Frese’s senior mark of 165 ... she has only had one game with fewer than three assists this season.
Sophomore Nicky Wieben has posted 60 blocked shots this year to break her own ISU single-season record, which she set last year with 59 ... she has 119 for her career, ranking her second all-time in ISU history ... she needs 36 to tie for first place ... this season Wieben has had three games with five blocks and eight games with three or more.
Lyndsey Medders broke the ISU career assist record against Loyola Marymount, passing Lindsey Wilson’s previous record of 589 ... Medders currently has 693 dimes and is fourth all-time in Big 12 history ... she need 30 assists to move into third place on the Big 12 list ... Medders also ranks eighth in school history with 1,409 points on the ISU career scoring chart, moving into eighth place against Texas Tech ... Megan Ronhovde is the 18th player in ISU history to join the 1,000-point club, as she now has 1,076 career points to rank 15th in ISU career scoring ... she has made her way onto the ISU career rebounding charts, ranking seventh with 686, and ranks third in three-point field goal makes with 237.
Big 12 Weekly Honors
Nicky Wieben was the most recent Cyclone to win Phillips 66 Big 12 Women’s Basketball Player of the Week honors which is chosen by a media voting panel for games from Feb. 12-18 ... Wieben averaged 19 points, 5.5 rebounds and two blocks for that week ... she hit 14-of-18 shots from the floor (.788) and went 9-of-10 from the charity stripe ... freshman Alison Lacey earned Big 12 weekly honors when she was named the Phillips 66 Big 12 Women’s basketball Rookie of the Week for games Jan. 22-28 ... Toccara Ross was named the Big 12 Rookie of the Week, while senior Lyndsey Medders was named Big 12 Player of the Week for the week of Jan. 15-21 ... ISU freshman, Rachel Pierson, also won the Big 12’s Rookie of the Week honor for the week of Dec. 3-10.
Against the Top 25
ISU’s 67-56 win over No. 22 Texas was the Cyclones’ first win over a ranked team since a 73-69 win over No. 13 Texas on Feb. 5, 2005 ... with the pair of wins over No. 13 Texas A&M, and the 64-53 win over No. 25 Nebraska, Iowa State is now 4-3 on the season against ranked teams, 40-104 all-time and 34-45 against ranked teams under Bill Fennelly ... Iowa State has faced five teams ranked in the top 25 this season, including Texas, Oklahoma, Nebraska (twice), Baylor and Texas A&M.
The Cyclones have shot 74.4 percent from the charity stripe this season, to rank second in the Big 12 ... head coach Bill Fennelly has made it a goal for ISU to make more free throws than the opponents attempt, and so far the Cyclones have been successful ... ISU has hit 436 free throws, while opponents have attempted just 401 on the season ... against Kansas on Jan. 3, Iowa State hit 33, while the Jayhawks attempted just five on the night ... and against Texas A&M on Feb. 14 ISU hit 21 free throws, while the Aggies attempted just six.
Cyclones Making Way Through Schedule
Iowa State is 25-7 on the season, including a 10-game winning streak earlier in the season and a current eight-game winning streak ... ISU has faced nine NCAA Tournament teams from a season ago and 15 of the 23 teams on ISU’s schedule were in the postseason last year ... the Cyclones have gone 8-4 against 2006 NCAA Tourney teams.
ISU’s 13-1 start to the season is the best for the Cyclones since going 15-1 during the 2004-05 campaign ... Iowa State wrapped up its regular-season non-conference slate with one loss or less for the fifth time in school history, with all five coming under head coach Bill Fennelly, and started 13-1 on the season for the fifth time in the last 12 seasons.
Iowa State claimed the mythical state championship for the second consecutive season ... the Cyclones defeated UNI, 80-74, in overtime in Cedar Falls on Nov. 20 ... then knocked off Iowa in the Hy-Vee Cy-Hawk Series in Iowa City on Nov. 30, 80-74 ... and ISU defeated Drake, 70-62, at Hilton Coliseum on Dec. 5.
Leaders of the Pack
In NCAA statistics released for games through March 4, the Cyclones ranked highly in a number of categories ... the Cyclones’ 7.3 three-pointers per game ranked 12th nationally, while their 15.4 assists per game ranked 47th ... ISU’s personal fouls per game ranked 28th and their 74.1 free throw percentage ranked 39th ... committing just 15.2 turnovers per game, Iowa State ranked 4th ... the Cyclones’ 37.3 field goal percentage defense was 46th and their +4 rebound margin was 55th ... their +8.2 scoring margin was 56th ... individually, Lyndsey Medders ranked fifth with 6.6 assists per game ... Nicky Wieben’s 1.8 blocks per game ranked 54th.
Big 12 Rankings
In games through March 8, the Cyclones lead the Big 12 in three-point field goals per game (7.4) and assist-to-turnover ratio ... they rank second in free throw percentage (.743) and third in assists (14.9) ... ISU is tied fourth in field-goal percentage defense (.372) and are fifth rebounding margin (+3.4) and three-point field goal accuracy (.344) ... individually, Lyndsey Medders leads the league in assists (6.4) and is 14th in individual scoring with 12.7 ppg ... teammate Nicky Wieben ranks 17th with 12.1 ppg and is third (1.9) in blocked shots ... Medders is second in assist-to-turnover ratio ... Medders is fifth, Megan Ronhovde is seventh and Heather Ezell is 11th in three-point field goals made ... Wieben is sixth and Toccara Ross is 10th in free throw percentage ... Ross is 10th in rebounding (7.4).
ISU head coach Bill Fennelly earned his 400th career victory with the Cyclones’ season-opening win vs. Cal State Fullerton ... Fennelly is now 421-170 overall and 255-117 in his 12 seasons with the Cyclones ... his 300th career win came against Baylor on March 7, 2001, in the Big 12 Tournament ... No. 200 also came in the Big 12 Tourney, defeating Texas A&M on March 4, 1997 ... notched his 100th career win while coaching at Toledo, turning back Providence, 74-64, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on March 18, 1992.
Medders’ Long List of Honors
All-America candidate Lyndsey Medders has earned numerous accolades this season, including being named to the All-Big 12 preseason and regular-season teams ... most recently she was named a finalist for the eighth annual Nancy Lieberman award for the nation’s top point guard ... she was a top 30 finalist for the Senior CLASS Award and a top 50 finalist for the Naismith Trophy presented by Cingular Wireless ... she was named to the Women’s John R. Wooden Award Preseason All-America Team and was named one of the nation’s top five point guards by ESPN.com ... she earned preseason all-America recognition from SportsPageMagazine.com and Street & Smith’s College Basketball Yearbook ... Medders led the Cyclones a year ago with 16.5 points per game, and led the nation in assists with a 7.7 pg average ... she was named to the All-Big 12 First Team last season, and earned third-team all-America honors from Women’s Basketball News Service in 2005-06.
Head Coach Bill Fennelly
Head coach Bill Fennelly took over a program that had only five winning seasons in its first 22 years and has guided ISU to nine postseason appearances in the last 10 years ... he earned the 400th win of his career in the 2006-07 season opener against Cal State Fullerton ... he has led the Cyclones to seven NCAA Tournament appearances, including a 1999 Elite Eight berth and Sweet Sixteen games in 2000 and 2001 ... Fennelly’s Cyclones captured the only league championships in program history, winning back-to-back Big 12 Conference Tournament championships in 2000 and 2001 and earning a share of the regular-season crown in 2000 ... Iowa State spent more than four years in The Associated Press national poll, including 34 weeks in the top 10 ... he has posted nearly triple the conference victories (115) in 12 seasons at ISU than all of the previous 15 seasons combined (43) ... his teams have drawn record-setting crowds, ranking among the top 11 schools nationally in attendance the last nine seasons ... Fennelly’s leadership produced ISU’s first-ever All-Americans in Stacy Frese (1999, 2000), Angie Welle (2000, 2001, 2002) and Anne O’Neil (2005) ... Welle was voted to the Big 12 Conference 10th Anniversary Team, an elite group of five players ... his Cyclones have earned all-conference recognition 28 times and academic all-league honors 55 times ... six of his players have been selected in the WNBA professional basketball draft over the last five years ... Fennelly, who guided Toledo to a 166-53 record and six postseason tournament berths in his seven years at UT, was inducted in the Toledo Varsity "T" Hall of Fame in 2003.
Where They Stack Up
Iowa State was picked fifth in the Big 12 Preseason Coaches Poll and improved on that, tying with Nebraska for fourth place in the final standings ... ISU recieved 34 points in the Associated Press Poll last week which would be good for 27th place in the standings ... ISU received nine votes in this week’s Coaches’ Poll, which would be good for 29th place ... ISU was picked No. 23 in two preseason publications, including Street & Smith’s College Basketball Yearbook and SportsPageMagazine.com.
Home Sweet Hilton Magic
The Cyclones have been phenomenal at home during head coach Bill Fennelly’s tenure, compiling a 154-27 record (.850) in Hilton Coliseum, including a 69-3 mark against regular-season non-conference opponents ... Iowa State was a last-second shot away from going undefeated at home this season, finishing with a 15-1 record at Hilton ... the Cyclones finished 15-0 in Hilton Coliseum two years ago, the third Cyclone squad to go undefeated at home (all three have come under Fennelly) ... ISU finished the 2005-06 season ranked seventh in attendance, marking the eighth consecutive season the Cyclones have ranked 11th or higher.
Two For 2007-08
Iowa natives Kelsey Bolte (Ida Grove) and Jocelyn Anderson (Gowrie) made it official Nov. 7 when they signed National Letters of Intent to join the Iowa State women’s basketball team for the 2007-08 season ... Bolte, a 6-1 senior guard at Battle Creek-Ida Grove, was the 2006 2A Iowa state Player of the Year, and earned a place on the 2006 Iowa state all-tournament team while leading the Falcons to a 27-2 overall record and a place in the state championship game ... Bolte averaged 22 points, 11 rebounds, five assists and five steals as a junior ... Anderson will join the Cyclones after two seasons at Des Moines Area Community College, where she is a sophomore this season ... the 6-4 center was chosen as a junior college preseason first-team All-American before the 2006-07 season began ... Anderson averaged 15.5 points, 11.2 rebounds and 5.3 blocked shots per game and shot 58.7 percent from the field as a freshman at DMACC.