|North Dakota State|
UND returns home to open a three-game homestand beginning Saturday with North Dakota State. Mayville State and Southwest Minnesota State will end the stretch before the non-conference finale at South Dakota on Dec. 21.
I KEEP ON FALL-IN
Junior Fallyn Freije stormed out of the gates in the loss at eighth-ranked Baylor. The Edmore, N.D., product had 10 of North Dakota’s first 13 points as the Fighting Hawks led 13-9 midway through the opening frame in Waco, Texas.
North Dakota (as of Dec. 6) is 89th in the RPI rankings after a tough schedule through the first seven games and four wins. UND finished 129 in the final Ratings Percentage Index last year. A look at where UND has finished in each year eligible in its Division I era:
LAST TIME OUT
UND led 13-9 at eighth-ranked Baylor, but the national-power Lady Bears responded, eventually taking a 105-43 win Tuesday evening in Waco, Texas. Junior Fallyn Freije scored 10 of UND’s first 13 points en route to a team-high 13 points for the game.
THAT’S PRETTY, PRETTY GOOD
Baylor’s win Tuesday was pretty run of the mill. In fact, the Lady Bears extended their streak of wins over unranked non-conference teams at home to 182 straight. That stretch dates all the way back to 2003.
ONLY GAVE UP TWO TOUCHDOWNS
UND squandered just 14 first-half points to UTSA in the Nov. 25 win. That total was the fewest allowed in a half for North Dakota since an 88-40 win over Dickinson State on Dec. 2, 2014 that saw just 13 second-half points for DSU.
North Dakota held UTSA scoreless for a whopping 10:42 in the Nov. 25 win. The Roadrunners scored with just under seven minutes to go to make it 19-14, didn’t see the scoreboard move until near four minutes were gone in the third quarter and the Hawks had piled up a 36-14 lead.
The Fighting Hawks trailed by 15 with 8:15 left in the third quarter vs. Lamar on Nov. 24 but rallied to win, 73-70. UND was down 13 at the break with 21 turnovers but managed to right the ship and out-score the Cardinals, 23-11 in the third quarter on the way to the win.
PICKIN’ ON THE PANTHERS
Lexi Klabo scored a career-high 29 points in the win over Northern Iowa Dec. 2. She added 15 rebounds and seven blocked shots in the win for her ninth career double-double.
HONORS ROLL IN
Klabo was named the Big Sky Conference’s Player of the Week for her performances in week two of the season. She was also the CollegeSportsMadness.com league player of the week honoree after a pair of double-doubles. She averaged 22.5 points, 12.5 rebounds and 5.5 blocks in games at South Dakota State and against UMass.
REJECTION IS ROUGH
Klabo blocked a career-high eight shots in the win over UMass Nov. 19. That total was the highest single-game total since Jenny Crouse blocked eight shots at North Dakota State Jan. 30, 1999. Crouse is the school’s leading scorer, rebounder and shot blocker all-time, leading UND to three NCAA Division II championships (1997-99).
REMEMBER THE SABBATH
UND’s 82-52 win over UMass was its first on a Sunday in over four years (Nov. 17, 2013 vs. South Dakota). North Dakota had dropped eight straight Sunday tilts until the Nov. 19 win.
The Nov. 19 win over UMass was the first over an Atlantic-10 team for head coach Travis Brewster. The 30-point blowout gave UND its first win over an A-10 team since the 2011-12 season. North Dakota has played just three games against the A-10 since making the Division I transition in 2008-09.
Melissa Dailey, who led UND in scoring in the opener at Oregon State, got going quickly in that game. She took the opening tip to the three-point line and connected just seven seconds after the tip for a fast start to her UND career. It was one of three triples for the junior transfer on the afternoon.
ABOUT NORTH DAKOTA STATE
NDSU is 5-4 thus far this season with its most recent action an 82-79 loss to University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley Tuesday at home. The Bison have had five different leading scorers this season and average four players with nine points or more per game. Senior Taylor Thunstedt leads the pack with 10.8 points per game while Reilly Jacobson averages 10.7 per contest. Rylee Nudell and Sarah Jacobson contribute 9.6 and 9.4 points per game, respectively.
ALL-TIME VS. THE BISON
North Dakota leads the all-time series with North Dakota State, taking 45 of the 78 meetings. UND has owned the series in the Division I era, taking all five meetings.
NDSU scored an 82-70 win over Massachusetts on Nov. 17 for one of its three wins over Division I schools. North Dakota blasted the Minutewomen, 82-52, two days later in Grand Forks, N.D.
KLABO PRESEASON ALL-BIG SKY, UND PICKED SECOND
Junior forward Lexi Klabo was named to the Big Sky Conference Preseason Team while her team was picked second by both the media and the coaches in the preseason polls. North Dakota has now been picked in the top two by the coaches in each of the last five preseason prognostications.
UND in the Big Sky preseason coach’s poll
Year Pick Finish
2012-13 6th T9th
2013-14 8th T1st
2014-15 1st T5th
2015-16 2nd T2nd
2016-17 2nd T1st
2017-18 2nd --
TAKING ON ALL COMERS
Two different schools that finished in the top 10 of the Rating Percentage Index (RPI) last season appear on UND’s formidable non-conference slate. Oregon State (Nov. 10) was a 31-5 team that advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16 while national power Baylor (Dec. 5), a seven-time defending Big 12 champion, highlight the non-league lineup. Three future Summit League foes dot the schedule as South Dakota State (Nov. 15) and South Dakota (Dec. 21), both of whom were WNIT qualifiers in 2016-17, join North Dakota State (Dec. 9) in key regional matchups.
All told, nearly half of North Dakota’s non-conference schedule is against teams that were in the top 100 (5 of 11). Add Montana State once the league schedule gets underway and UND will have seven total games against top 100 teams and a total of 12 games against teams that made the postseason a year ago.
*12 total games vs. postseason teams from last season (5 NCAA, 2 WNIT, 5 WBI)
*7 games against Top 100 RPI and two in the Top 10 (Oregon State- 6, Baylor- 7, South Dakota State- 45, Montana State (2)- 59, Northern Iowa- 60, South Dakota- 80).
*UND’s nine Division I non-conference opponents combined for a 185-105 (.638) record last season, averaging 21 wins each.
*UND is playing its sixth and final season in the Big Sky Conference before moving to The Summit League in 2018-19.
*North Dakota (4) is the only Big Sky team with an active postseason streak longer than two.
*From 2013-17, UND had the most overall wins (78), Big Sky wins (52), league road wins (21) and tied for most Big Sky regular season titles (2).
FREE TIMES EIGHT
Junior Lexi Klabo knocked down all eight of her free throw attempts in the opener at Oregon State. It marked the second-highest number of free throws she’s made without a miss in her career (10-10 vs. Weber State, Feb. 18, 2017).
TOP OF THE SUMMIT
North Dakota played four Summit League teams last season and boasts an 11-5 all-time mark against that conference in Division I play. UND announced it will move to the Summit beginning with the 2018-19 season.
The University of North Dakota women’s basketball program holds an 897-3780(.703) record all-time since the first game was played in 1974. All-time, North Dakota is 495-105 (.825) when it comes to defending its own court. The team played at the UND Fieldhouse/Hyslop Sports Center before moving into its current home at the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center in 2004-05.
HOW TO FOLLOW?
You can follow UND women’s basketball on twitter @UNDWbasketball for in-game scores, notes and links to live stats and how to watch.
FIGHTING HAWKS ON MOBILE
Take North Dakota women’s basketball with you wherever you go with UNDsports.com’s mobile app. Download it to your computer or your smart phone for free and follow your team wherever they go.
CAN I GET A WIGNESS?
All UND games can be heard live on the UND sports Home of Economy Radio Network, the flagship for UND basketball. Mitch Wigness returns for his fifth season behind the mic providing the play-by-play. Follow UNDsports.com for affiliates and stations covering the postseason.
FIGHTING HAWKS ON TV
North Dakota will have at least nine games televised nationally, including seven home games. MidcoSN will produce five home games, highlighted by in-state rival North Dakota State on Saturday, Dec. 9. Alex Heinert returns as the play-by-play voice, while former UND women’s basketball player and assistant coach Val (Sannes) Sussex will serve as the analyst.
FSN’s two contests will be produced by UND Athletics staff, professional freelancers and UND students. UND Athletics’ Video Production Coordinator David Folske will produce the broadcasts and Assistant Media Relations Director Mitch Wigness will provide the play-by-play with Sussex handling analyst duties.
All nine games will air nationally on FOX College Sports.