LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The University of Louisville women’s basketball team faces its first ranked team of the year on Thursday, playing host to No. 22 Iowa in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge at 7:02 p.m. in the KFC Yum! Center.
The Dec. 3 contest will air on ESPN3, with Drew Deener (play-by-play) and Sara White (analyst) on the call. The radio broadcast will be available on WKRD 790 AM in Louisville, with Matt Andrews (play-by-play) and Adrienne Johnson (analyst) calling the action.
The eighth annual ACC/Big Ten Challenge starts with eight games on Wednesday and continues with six on Thursday. The ACC holds a 48-32 advantage over the Big Ten in Challenge games, entering this season.
Of the 14 games, Louisville’s contest with Iowa marks one of four top-25 matchups in the event. The two programs became familiar with each other last season, when the Cardinals posted an 83-53 victory in Iowa City in the NCAA Tournament that gave Louisville a trip to the NCAA Sweet 16. Shoni Schimmel poured in a game-high 26 for the Cardinals, who shot 53.1 percent from the field in their first meeting in series history with the Hawkeyes.
While three of Louisville’s starters from that team have graduated, this year’s group has won its first seven games and moved to No. 7 in the latest Associated Press and USA Today Coaches polls.
The Cardinals are coming off their fifth victory by at least 20 points, beating Valparaiso 86-59 on Sunday. Louisville limited Valparaiso to just 24 first-half points and forced the Crusaders into 22 turnovers.
Myisha Hines-Allen scored a season-best 21 on 9-of-13 shooting and earned ACC Freshman of the Week honors on Monday after averaging 18.3 points on 71.4 percent shooting. Sara Hammond chipped in 13, Shawnta’ Dyer had 11, and Emmonnie Henderson recorded her first career double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds.
For the year, freshmen Hines-Allen (15.1) and Mariya Moore (14.3) are leading UofL in scoring. Moore is second on the team in assists (29) and third in steals (14). Hammond, who is scoring 10.6 points per game, has a team-high 6.9 rebounds.
Iowa boasts a 6-1 record after going 1-1 in the South Point Thanksgiving Shootout in Nevada. The Hawkeyes dropped a 77-67 decision to Arkansas before recording a 79-67 victory over Gonzaga. Five Hawkeyes scored in double digits in the win, paced by Whitney Jennings’ game-high 19.
Ally Disterhoft is leading Iowa with 16.0 points per game on 50.6 percent shooting. Melissa Dixon is contributing 13.6 points, and Samantha Logic is averaging 11.7 points, 6.9 rebounds per game, and 6.6 assists per game. Logic also has a team-best 16 steals.
The Hawkeyes return four starters from a team that went 27-9 last year and fell 83-53 to Louisville in the NCAA Tournament in Iowa City. Iowa, which was picked to finish third in the Big Ten, is under the direction of 14th-year coach Lisa Bluder.
GAME FACTS – Iowa at Louisville
Date: Thursday, Nov. 4
Time: 7:02 p.m. ET
Site: KFC Yum! Center/Crum Court (22,000), Louisville, Ky.
TV: ESPN3 will broadcast the game, with Drew Deener (play-by-play) and Sara White (analyst) calling the action.
Radio: WKRD 790 AM will broadcast the game, with Matt Andrews (play-by-play) and Adrienne Johnson (analyst) calling the action.
Series History: Louisville leads the all-time series 1-0 (1-0 in Iowa City). Louisville defeated Iowa 83-53 on March 25, 2014, in the NCAA Tournament in Iowa City, Iowa.
Next UofL Game: Sunday, Dec. 7 vs. Kentucky in KFC Yum! Center, 2:02 p.m. ET (ESPN3)