Date/Time: Sunday, Dec. 9, 2012 • 1:30 PM
Location/Venue: New York, N.Y. (Madison Square Garden
Where to Watch: None
Radio: Blue Devil IMG - WDNC-AM 620 (Steve Barnes, Morgan Patrick)
Live Stats: www.GoDuke.com
Series Record: Duke leads 4-1
Last Meeting: March 24, 2012 (Duke 74, St. John’s 47)
Ranking: #4 (AP), #4 (USA Today)
Head Coach: Joanne P. McCallie (21st Year)
Record at Duke: 148-32 (6th Year)
ACC Record: 80-14 (6th Year)
Overall Record: 464-180 (21st Year)
vs. St. John’s 1-0
#25 St. John’s
Ranking: RV (AP), #25 (USA Today)
Head Coach: Joe Tartamella (1st Year)
Record at St. John’s: 4-2 (1st Year)
Overall Record: same
Setting the Scene...
The fourth-ranked Blue Devil women’s basketball team will travel to New York, N.Y., this weekend as Duke (7-0) will participate in the Maggie Dixon Classic on Sunday, Dec. 9 at approximately 1:30 p.m., against 25th-ranked St. John’s (4-2) at Madison Square Garden.
The Maggie Dixon Classic will also feature Louisiana Tech and Rutgers in the first game at 11 a.m.
Sunday’s contest will be aired live on the Blue Devil IMG Sports Network on WDNC AM 620 with Steve Barnes (PXP) and Morgan Patrick (Color) calling the action. The audio is also available live at www.GoDuke.com.
Following the game Sunday, Duke will have the week off for exams before traveling to Los Angeles, Calif., for the Trojan Classic on Dec. 21-22.
Storylines/Other Blue Devil Notes...
• Elizabeth Williams has blocked at least one shot in every collegiate game she has played - 40 straight.
• Tricia Liston needs one more three-pointer to reach 100 for her career. She has hit at least one three-pointer in 14 straight games, which is the longest streak since Georgia Schweitzer hit 25 straight treys in 2000-01.
• The Blue Devils are coming off hitting a season-low two three-pointers on 10 attempts versus Georgia Tech.
• In two road games this season, Duke has hit 55.1 percent from the field and averaged 76.5 points per game. Junior Chelsea Gray has averaged 20.5 points, 7.5 assists, 4.5 rebounds and 4.0 steals in those games.
• Duke has hit 55.7 percent of its field goals in the first half this season, while holding a 19.3 average halftime lead. The Blue Devils have hit 19-of-37 for a 51.4 percent from downtown in the first stanza.
• After averaging a combined 9.5 rebounds a season ago, the junior duo of Tricia Liston and Haley Peters is pulling down an average of 15.0 boards a contest this season.
• Chelsea Gray came close to registering her second career triple-double last Sunday against California with 13 points, nine assists and eight rebounds.
• The Blue Devils have registered 70 or more points in the opening seven contests for the first time since 2005-06.
• Five different players have led the Blue Devils in scoring in seven games.
• Over the last five games, Elizabeth Williams has hit 37-of-56 field goals for a 66.1 percentage.
• The Blue Devils have won 57 straight home contests against unranked non-conference opponents.
• Duke held Iona to 31 points, which marks the 18th time under Coach P the Blue Devils have held an opponent to under 40 points.
• Chelsea Gray had her consecutive free throws made streak come to an end at Michigan at a school-record 37.
• Duke owns a 35-2 record against non-conference opponents at home in Cameron Indoor Stadium dating back to the 2008-09 campaign.
• The Blue Devils have notched a 26-2 record in the month of December over the last four years. Duke has won 45 straight home games in the month of December with the last loss coming to UCLA on Dec. 20, 1997 (83-93).
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Maggie Dixon Classic...
Duke will play in its second Maggie Dixon Classic as the Blue Devils took down 22nd-ranked Pittsburgh on Dec. 8, 2007 with a 51-49 victory at Madison Square Garden. It also marks the second time in school history the Blue Devils have played in Madison Square Garden.
In the Pittsburgh contest back in 2007, current assistant coach Joy Cheek pulled down an offensive rebound with two seconds remaining and scored the game-winning basket as time expired to give Duke the victory. Cheek finished with a team-high 16 points in the contest.
Maggie Dixon died April 6, 2006 of arrhythmia, probably caused by an enlarged heart. Her death came three weeks after her first season as a head coach, a performance that won the admiration of the U.S. Military Academy and all of college basketball.
There will be a ceremony in-between games on Sunday honoring Maggie Dixon.
A Look at St. John’s...
The Red Storm enter Sunday’s matchup with an overall record of 4-2 after falling to Boston University, 66-49 on Dec. 1. St. John’s is undefeated at home after cruising past Hofstra and Iona earlier in the season. Shenneika Smith (18.4 points, 10.6 rebounds), Nadira McKenith (16.0 points, 6.4 rebounds) and Briana Brown (11.3 points, 6.8 rebounds) have led the way in scoring for the Red Storm this year.
Head coach Joe Tartamella enters his first season as head coach of the Red Storm, after spending nine years as an assistant coach of St. John’s. During Tartamella’s tenure as an assistant coach, the Red Storm advanced to nine Big East Tournaments, two Women’s National Invitation Tournament appearances and four NCAA Tournaments, including a NCAA Regional Semifinal appearance last season.
Duke Versus the Big East...
Duke holds a record of 35-21 all-time against Big East teams -- Cincinnati (0-1), Connecticut (3-8), DePaul (2-1), Georgetown (4-0), Louisville (1-1), Marquette (3-0), Notre Dame (1-5), Providence (3-1), Pittsburgh (4-0), Rutgers (3-2), Seton Hall (4-2), St. John’s (4-1), South Florida (3-0), Syracuse (1-0) and Villanova (1-0).
The last time Duke faced a Big East opponent came last season during the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Tournament, when No. 5 Duke outlasted No. 14 St. Johns, 74-47.
McCallie owns a 23-11 career record against Big East teams.
Williams Nets Career High...
Sophomore Elizabeth Williams was dominant in Duke’s victory over Georgia Tech on Thursday to open ACC play with 25 points, 11 rebounds and six blocked shots. She had all six blocks in the second half and tied a career high with 10 field goals on 14 attempts.
The double-double was her first this season and sixth of her career.
Since opening the season with only eight points, Williams has averaged 17.7 points, 7.0 rebounds, 4.0 blocks and 1.3 steals, while hitting 64.2 percent from the field.
Williams made the first start of the season at Michigan. In her three games started, Williams averaged 18.7 points, 7.7 rebounds, 4.0 blocks and 1.3 steals. She came off the bench the first four games as she was recovering from a stress fracture in her leg, which first occurred prior to last year's NCAA Tournament.
Peters Heads Close to Home...
Junior Haley Peters will be close to home when the Blue Devils travel to New York, N.Y., this weekend. Peters, who is from Red Bank, N.J., grew up only 45 minutes from Madison Square Garden.
She has played one game in Madison Square Garden when she was eight years old following a New York Liberty game. Peters was at the Liberty game for a Girl Scouts event.
Peters also played against two St. John's players - Eugenia McPherson and Nadirah McKenith.
Johnson Notches Career High...
Sophomore Ka'lia Johnson continues to pick up her play as she notched a career-high 11 rebounds to go along with nine points in 23 minutes against Georgia Tech.
Earlier this season, Johnson posted a career-high 11 points on 4-of-6 field goals in 21 minutes against Valparaiso.
Vernerey Misses First Contest...
After playing in 111 straight contests since arriving at Duke, senior Allison Vernerey missed her first career game on Thursday against Georgia Tech.
She suffered an elbow injury versus California on Dec. 2. Vernerey will be evaluated Friday and Saturday and is hoping to play Sunday against St. John’s.
Liston Catches Fire...
After failing to reach double-figure scoring for two straight games, Tricia Liston posted a season-high 22 points against 10th-ranked California. She attempted a career-high 16 field goals, while hitting nine. Liston also pulled down eight rebounds.
Liston posted 20-plus points for the second time this season and the ninth time in her career.