Women's basketball faces South Carolina State on Saturday at 4 p.m.

Dec. 28, 2007


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After taking a short hiatus for the holidays, the JU women's basketball team will close out the 2007 portion of its schedule by ending a three-game road trip in South Carolina.

The Dolphins (9-3), who are off to its best start in program history, will face South Carolina State (3-7) on Saturday at 4 p.m. in the Smith-Hammond- Middleton Memorial Center.

JU and SC State will be facing each other for the second time after the Dolphins defeated the Lady Bulldogs, 66-56 on Nov. 17, 2006. The Dolphins are 7-4 all-time against the Mid-Eastern Atlantic Conference, including a 1-1 mark this season with a loss to Florida A&M and a win over Bethune-Cookman.

JU ranks among nation's best at home
The Dolphins have raised the bar when it comes to playing at home by setting a new program record in 2006-07 with 13 wins. JU surpassed the previous mark of seven victories, which was set by the squad in 2005-06.

JU is currently in the midst of a 15-game home winning streak which continued with an 56-48 win over Coastal Carolina on Dec. 8 at Swisher Gymnasium. Included in the winning streak is a 3-0 record at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. JU also finished the 2007 calender year undefeated at home (14-0).

JU's last loss was a 73-69 decision against Niagara at Swisher Gymnasium on Dec. 18, 2006. Since the beginning of the 2006-07 campaign, the Dolphins are 16-1 at home.

The Dolphins' 15-game streak has earned them a spot on the national home winning streak list as JU currently ranks fourth. The longest home streak is owned by James Madison (30) and is followed by Texas A&M (23) and Duke (19).

JU among best in A-Sun
The Dolphins currently lead the Atlantic Sun Conference with a 7-3 mark in the nonconference schedule and sit atop several statistical categories as well.

JU leads the conference in scoring margin (+7.2 - which is the only program to have a positive margin), field goal percentage (.404), 3-point field goal percentage (.322), 3-point field goal percentage defense (.275), assists (14.4), turnover margin (+5.9) and assist/turnover ratio (0.84).

The Dolphins also rank second in scoring (67.9), scoring defense (60.8) and steals (12.2) and are third in blocks (3.3).

Williams breaking more records
Senior forward Ashley Williams became the first player in program history to be named preseason MVP after surpassing her own single-season record with 509 points last season. She also became the first Dolphin to earn consecutive first team all- conference honors after tying for the conference lead with an average of 17 points per contest.

The records are continuing to fall for the Jacksonville native and she is poised to end her Dolphin career as one of the top players in the history of the program.

After scoring 14 points in a win over Miami on Nov. 13, Williams joined forward Kat Sungy (1999-03), forward Yolisha Jackson (2000-05) and guard Sheena Carpenter (2003-06) as the only Dolphins to score 1,000 points in their careers. Now that she has surpassed 1,000 points, she takes aim at being the top scorer in program history. Williams is nine points shy of surpassing Sungy (1,183) on the all-time point leader list. Williams is also leading the A-Sun in scoring with 15.7 points per contest while ranking second in the conference with a .541 field-goal percentage.

On the defensive side of the ball, Williams set the career record for blocked shots with one against Bethune-Cookman on Nov. 16. She also passed Sungy on the all-time steals list with five against Winthrop on Nov. 24.