Women's Basketball Set to Open Season at Mississippi State

    Senior point guard Porsche Landry
    Senior point guard Porsche Landry
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    Nov. 7, 2012

    HOUSTON (0-0) at MISSISSIPPI STATE (0-0)
     Time  7 p.m. • Friday, Nov. 9, 2012
     Location  Humphrey Coliseum (10,500) • Starkville, Miss.
     Series History  Mississippi State leads, 1-0
     Last Time  Mississippi State 76, Houston 57 (11/27/02)
     Radio  Listen Live
     Houston Sports Network online broadcast powered by Stretch Internet
     Jeremy Branham, (play-by-play), Rusty Laverentz (color)
     Live Stats  Live Stats
     Game Notes  Houston Notes Get Acrobat Reader
     Social Media   Facebook Twitter

    STARKVILLE, Miss. - The University of Houston Women's Basketball team officially kicks off the 2012-13 season at 7 p.m., Friday against Mississippi State at Humphrey Coliseum.

    Third-year head coach Todd Buchanan welcomes nine talented newcomers to the roster, joining veterans Porsche Landry, Tasha Tubbs, Mae Woods and Terran Alford.

    Landry was granted a fifth year of eligibility following a season-ending injury in the third contest last year, where she was averaging 22.0 points per game. The Houston native is one of only four Cougars all-time in program history with 1,000 career points (1,081) and 300 assists (345). Landry, who has started 91 of 95 career games, needs just five assists on Friday to move into fourth place on the career chart.

    Six freshmen enter their first collegiate season, marking the second most in Conference USA, while transfers Marissa Ashton, Te'onna Campbell, Destini Texada and Yasmeen Thompson also join the mix for the 2012-13 campaign.

    SEASON TICKETS

    Women's basketball season tickets can be purchased starting at only $75. These general admission season tickets are part of a Flex Plan. Fans can use one ticket per game, invite 15 friends to come out to a single game or any combination in between.

    Fans can also get closer to the action by purchasing season floor seats for only $200.

    Fans have several options when ordering their basketball tickets. They can visit the Athletics Ticket Office, located on the first floor of the Athletics/Alumni Center near the UH Fan Shop, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

    ON THE AIR

    Fans can hear all Cougar Basketball games live online with Jeremy Branham calling the play-by-play action and Rusty Laverentz providing analysis during road contests. To listen live, click Here or follow Audio link on schedule page at UHCougars.com.

    Fans can follow live scoring by clicking the Live Stats link on the schedule page at UHCougars.com.

    ABOUT MISSISSIPPI STATE

    Mississippi State is under the direction of first-year head coach Vic Schaefer following a 14-16 campaign a year ago. Schaefer comes to Starkville following nine seasons as Associate Head Coach at Texas A&M and is known for his stifling defenses.

    Sophomore center Martha Alwal (6-4) and sophomore guard Kendra Grant are the lone returning starters for the Lady Bulldogs, as Alwal averaged 5.4 points, 7.2 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game last season while Grant added 7.3 points per contest.

    The Lady Bulldogs played their lone exhibition contest on Friday, defeating Shorter, 55-49. Sophomore forward Carnecia Williams (6-3) and junior guard Katia May (5-2) each posted 13 points to lead Mississippi State.

    SERIES HISTORY VS MISSISSIPPI STATE

    Houston and Mississippi State have only met once on the hardwood, as the Lady Bulldogs came away with a 76-57 victory over the Cougars on Nov. 27, 2002 at Hofheinz Pavilion.

    Cougar legend Chandi Jones tallied 33 of Houston's 57 points to go with seven rebounds and three blocks, while LaToya Thomas paced the Lady Bulldogs with 31 points and 13 boards.

    Houston will meet a team from the Southeastern Conference for the first time since Nov. 21, 2009, when the Cougars fell at seventh-ranked LSU by a score of 72-54.

    HOUSTON IN SEASON OPENERS

    Coming into Friday night's season opener at Mississippi State, Houston has put together a 28-9 record all-time in the first contest. The Cougars' last-second loss to New Mexico State last season snapped a four-game winning streak in season openers dating back to Nov. 9, 2007.

    Houston has dominated when opening the season at home, but has also held its own when beginning the season on the road with a 7-4 mark. The Cougars have only played two true road contests to open a season since the 1996-97 season, falling to Wisconsin (77-54) on Nov. 18, 2005, and defeating Gardner-Webb (86-64) on Nov. 13, 2009.

    Friday's contest marks only the second time the Cougars have met a Southeastern Conference opponent in the season opener, as Houston topped No. 25 LSU by a score of 66-59 on Nov. 14, 1997.

    UP NEXT

    After Friday's season opener at Mississippi State, the Cougars return home to play host to Alabama at 7 p.m., on Nov. 13 at Hofheinz Pavilion, marking their second-straight contest against a Southeastern Conference opponent.

    COUGARS BRING IN TALENTED CLASS

    The 2012-13 edition of the Cougars may be young and inexperienced, but there is no lack of talent after an impressive eight-player recruiting haul.

    The class, which consists of six freshmen and two junior college transfers, addressed needs with size and athleticism in both the front and backcourt, while also providing Coach Buchanan with the most depth he's had going into his third season.

    Various recruiting services took notice, as ESPN HoopGurlz tabbed the class as 40th-best in its final rankings, while Dan Olson's Collegiate Girl's Basketball Report gave the early six-player class in November a top 25 ranking at No. 22, which is tops in Conference USA.

    HOUSTON 1,000-POINT CLUB
    1. Chandi Jones 2,692
    2. Sharion Higgins 1,957
    3. Sonya Watkins 1,752
    4. Courtney Taylor 1,684
    5. Vickey Finch 1,670
    6. Kip Anderson 1,588
    7. Brittney Scott 1,522
    8. Jennifer Jones 1,498
    9. Pat Luckey 1,391
    10. Darla Simpson 1,282
    22. Porsche Landry 1,081

    NEW NUMBER, NEW START

    Not only will fans have the opportunity to see senior point guard Porsche Landry back in action for her fifth year, they will also see her donning a new look.

    After having to watch a young and injury-riddled squad from the sidelines while enduring a long recovery last year, Landry entered her final season at Houston wanting to change things up for a fresh start.

    "The number really didn't matter to me, but with the injury, I actually didn't want 20 anymore. I wanted a new number, a new start."

    After three-plus years of donning the No. 20, Landry decided to suit up in the No. 5 for her final hurrah, which has always been her favorite number.

    ELITE COMPANY

    Senior point guard Porsche Landry belongs in an elite group in Houston women's basketball history as one of only four Cougars all-time with 1,000 points (1,081) and 300 assists (345).

    Landry posted a game-high 20 points against Tulane on March 11, 2011 at the C-USA Tournament to reach the 1,000-point mark and could end her career securely in the top 10, while also having a chance to wind up in the top two on the career assists chart.

    HOUSTON 300-ASSIST CLUB
    1. Betty Darthard 482
    2. Arlene Brown 434
    3. Kip Anderson 361
    4. Tye Jackson 350
    5. Porsche Landry 345

    A HEAPING HELPING OF HOFHEINZ

    Houston's Hofheinz Pavilion will be a second home for Cougar fans this season, as the women's basketball squad will play 16 regular-season games at their home arena for the second year in a row, which ties for second-most all-time in school history and the most since the 1977-78 season.

    The non-conference slate features games against teams from the Big 12, SEC, Missouri Valley and Mountain West, and eight of the 13 games will be played at Hofheinz Pavilion.

    The Cougars will play eight total contests this season against teams that advanced to postseason play a year ago.

     

     

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