Dec. 15, 1999
East Lansing, Mich. -
Dayton (4-4) vs. Michigan State (7-1)
Friday, Dec. 17 * 7 p.m. * E. Lansing, MI
Michigan State vs. North Carolina (7-2)
Sunday, Dec. 19 * 3:30 p.m. * Myrtle Beach, SC
Michigan State will play three games in five days beginning with its final home game of 1999. The Spartans begin the three-game stretch by hosting Dayton on Friday, Dec. 17 at 7 p.m., at the Breslin Center (15,138).
MSU will then travel to Myrtle Beach, S.C., to face North Carolina on Sunday, Dec. 19. The game will be played at Lambo Arena and will begin at 3:30 p.m., or 30 minutes following the completion of the contest between Penn State and Clemson also to be played at the site.
On the return trip to East Lansing, the Spartans will stop in Athens, Ohio to play Ohio on Tuesday, Dec. 21 at 7 p.m.
The contest against North Carolina is the first of three-straight road games for the Spartans, who open the Big Ten season on the road against Michigan on Dec. 30.
WIENERMOBILE AT BRESLIN
The Oscar Meyer Wienermobile will be outside the Breslin Center prior to Friday's game against Dayton. Kids of all ages are invited to stop by for coloring and free gifts from Oscar Meyer.
Friday's game against Dayton will be televised on AT&T Cable. The broadcast can be seen locally in the Lansing area on cable channel 17.
Ben Stark, Paula Sanders and Sue Carter make up the broadcast team.
The next three games will be carried live on WVFN Radio (730 AM) with Mike Vander Woude calling the action. Tracy Renken will join Vander Woude for the Dayton game, while Paula Sanders will handle the analysis for the North Carolina and Ohio games.
Broadcasts of all Spartan games this season can be accessed on the internet at www.msuspartans.com.
MSU is 7-1 following an 84-54 road loss to Notre Dame on Dec. 11. The loss snapped the Spartans' seven game winning streak.
Dayton is 4-4 on the season and has been idle since a 76-46 victory over Miami on Dec. 7. The Flyers have not won back-to-back games this season.
North Carolina will bring a 7-2 mark into its game with the Spartans. The Tar Heels have won three straight since suffering a 99-86 loss to Notre Dame on Dec. 4.
Michigan State Spartans (7-1 Overall) PPG RPG APG F 52 Kristen Rasmussen, 6-4, Sr., East Lansing 13.1 9.6 1.6 bpg F 32 Becky Cummings, 6-3, Jr., Walled Lake 15.3 6.8 1.7 G 21 Maxann Reese, 5-9, Sr., Highland Park 15.6 3.6 2.5 G 34 Donita Johnson, 5-10, Jr., Clinton Township 5.8 5.4 5.4 G 40 Vnemina Reese, 5-7, RFr., Fort Wayne, IN 3.6 2.6 5.0
Michigan State coach Karen Langeland is in her 24th season at the helm of the Spartan program. A native of Grand Rapids, Langeland has a career coaching mark of 364-279.
Langeland, who is the dean of Big Ten Conference women?s basketball coaches, has guided the Spartans to three postseason appearances in the last four years, including a quarterfinal appearance in the WNIT last season.
Jaci Clark is in her second year at Dayton after spending the previous seven campaigns at Bowling Green. Clark has compiled a record of 15-21 with the Flyers and is 150-86 as a collegiate head coach.
Sylvia Hatchell is in her 14th season at North Carolina and in her 25th collegiate campaign overall. Hatchell has a record of 276-135 with the Tar Heels and a career mark of 548-215.
MSU has a 5-1 advantage in its all-time series with Dayton that began in 1994. The Spartans have won three straight after suffering a 63-59 overtime loss in Dayton on Dec. 30, 1986. The two teams have not met since 1994.
North Carolina and MSU have met just twice with the Tar Heels coming out on top on each occasion.
The last meeting between the two schools came in the second round of the NCAA Tournament in 1997 in Chapel Hill. The Tar Heels captured an 81-71 overtime decision in what is still one of the most devasting losses in Spartan history.
MSU led by as many as 10 points in the second half and held a 63-60 advantage with five seconds left. Following a timeout by UNC, Chanel Wright hit a desperation three-pointer as time expired to send the game into overtime.
The Tar Heels rode the wave of emotion into the extra session and went on to capture the win and advance to the NCAA Sweet 16.
ABOUT THE FLYERS
Dayton returns five players with starting experience from last season's squad that posted an 11-17 mark under first-year head coach Jaci Clark.
Senior guard Christi Hester is one of two players averaging in double figures at 13.3 points per game. Junior forward/center RaeLynn McIntosh contributes 10.8 points and 7.5 rebounds per game.
As a team, the Flyers are averaging 65.6 points per game, while allowing just 58.1 per contest.
ABOUT THE TAR HEELS
North Carolina has three starters back in the fold from last season's team that posted a 28-8 record and advanced to the NCAA Regional Semifinals.
Junior forward LaQuanda Barksdale leads the high powered Tar Heel attack with a 21.8 points per game average. She also contributes a team-high 9.3 boards per game. Junior guard Nikki Teasley is averaging 13.7 points and 5.7 assists per game.
As a team, UNC is averaging 80.0 points per game and holding its opponents to a 68.0 per game average.
START BEST EVER FOR SPARTANS
Michigan State posted a 7-0 mark before suffering its first loss of the season, the best start in school history.
The previous record was the 6-0 record the 1983-84 squad posted to open the campaign en route to an 18-10 record.
WINNING STREAK TOPS SINCE 1996-97
MSU's seven-game winning streak was the longest since the 1996-97 season, the year the Spartans won the Big Ten.
The seven straight victories tie for the third longest winning streak in program history.
CALLIER ON THE MEND-DAVIS OUT A COUPLE WEEKS
Freshman center Jennifer Callier, who has been sidelined with a stress reaction in her right foot, began light workouts last week and could see limited action in Friday's game against Dayton.
The 6-4 rookie had an impressive debut in her first collegiate game, scoring 15 points and pulling down six rebounds in the first contest of the year.
Junior Nikki Davis, who was sidelined all but seven games last season with a knee injury, will undergo arthroscopic surgery on the same knee on Monday, Dec. 13. Davis will likely miss two weeks of action.
SPARTANS LOOK TO CONTINUE WINNING STREAK AT THE BRESLIN CENTER
The Spartans take a modest seven-game home winning streak into Friday's game against Dayton. MSU's last home loss came against defending national champion Purdue on Jan. 31, 1999 (80-66). The Spartans have a record of 90-42 (.682) in 10 years at the Breslin Center.
WINLESS STREAK AGAINST TOP 25 TEAMS REMAINS
MSU's loss to Notre Dame on Saturday was the 12th straight against a Top 25 team. The Spartans are looking for their first win over a nationally ranked opponent since 1997.
MSU is winless in its last 12 contests against Top 25 teams. The Spartans' last win over a ranked opponent came on March 14, 1997 when it topped No. 25 Portland in overtime in the first round of the NCAA Tournament.
OFFENSE SHUT DOWN
Michigan State failed to score 70 points in a game for the first time this season in its 84-54 loss to Notre Dame on Dec. 11.
The Spartans shot a season-low 33 percent in the game, including 25 percent from the field in the second half.
TOUGH ?D? LEADS TO WINS
MSU has held six of its first eight opponents to less than 70 points. Alabama scored 72 in a one-point loss to the Spartans, while Notre Dame blitzed MSU for 84 points.
The Spartans have won 16-straight games when holding the opposition to less than 70 points. MSU's last loss against an opponent that tallied less than 70 points was a 62-60 setback to Ohio State on Dec. 30, 1998.
SPARTANS HAVE THE HOT HAND FROM THE FIELD
Last week MSU led the the Big Ten and was among the national leaders in field goal percentage. The Spartans are currently shooting 47 percent from the field.
MSU has shot 50 percent or better from the floor in four of eight contests, including a season-high 55 percent in the win over Butler on Dec. 11.
CUMMINGS & RASMUSSEN DOMINATE CHIPPEWAS
Cummings scored a career-high 23 points and tied her season high with 13 boards, while Rasmussen tallied a season-high 22 points and had 17 rebounds.
It was the second double-double of the season for each player.
Michigan State has outrebounded six of its first eight opponents and is averaging 42.9 boards per game compared to its opponents 37.3 per game average.
Southern Illinois and Notre Dame are the only teams to outboard the Spartans this season. MSU has garnered 50 or more rebounds three times this season, including a season-best 56 against Appalachian State in the first game of the year.
RASMUSSEN WARMING UP
Senior Kristen Rasmussen has started to heat up offensively for the Spartans over the last four games, averaging 18.0 points and 10.2 rebounds during that span.
In the first four games of the year, Rasmussen scored in double figures just once - vs. Alabama.
The 6-4 forward is currently averaging 13.1 points and a Big Ten-best 9.6 rebounds per game. Rasmussen pulled down eight rebounds in the win over Illinois State on Dec. 2 to become just the sixth player in Spartan history to record 700 boards in a career.
Rasmussen currently ranks fifth on the all-time rebound chart with 737 boards.
The Spartan forward also became one of just four players in Spartan history to score 1,000 points and pull down 700 rebounds in a career. Rasmussen, who has scored 1,140 points, joins Kris Emerson (1,590 pts./933 reb.), Mary Kay Itnyre (1,189 pts./821 reb.) and Kisha Kelley (1,668 pts./701 reb.) in the elite group.
MAXANN REESE NOTES
Senior guard Maxann Reese leads the team in scoring with a 15.6 points per game average. The Highland Park native ranks fourth on the all-time scoring chart with 1,218 points.
Reese has scored in double figures in every game this season. She is also contributing 3.6 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game while playing a team-high 29.7 minutes per contest.
MSU's all-time three-point field goal leader (181) scored a season-high 25 points in the win over Illinois State on Dec. 2.
CUMMINGS NEARS 400 CAREER REBOUNDS
Junior forward Becky Cummings is 14 rebounds shy of becoming the 16th player in Spartan history to record 400 boards in a career. Cummings needs just three rebounds to move into 16th place on the all-time chart.
The Walled Lake native has started the season strong, averaging 15.3 points and 6.8 rebounds per game, while shooting 56 percent from the field.
Cummings scored a career-high 23 points in the win over Central Michigan on Dec. 8. She has been the Spartans? leading scorer five times and the top rebounder on three occasions.
POINT COUNTER POINT
The pair combines to average 9.7 assists per game.
Johnson's versatility has played a key role in MSU's success. She is averaging 5.8 points and 5.4 rebounds per game.
Reese, who started the first six games a year ago before being sidelined with a knee injury, is contributing 3.6 points and 2.6 rebounds per game.
The Fort Wayne, Ind., native distributed a career-high nine assists in the first game of the year.
CALL IN THE RECKER
Freshman Maria Recker has provided MSU with valuable minutes off the bench this season. The Auburn, Ind., native is averaging 18.1 minutes per game and is fifth on the team in scoring with a 6.6 points per game average.
Recker equaled her season high with 10 points in the win over Central Michigan on Wednesday.