THE UM HOLIDAY TOURNAMENT
Central Connecticut, Delaware State and Wisconsin each will travel to Coral Gables to take part in this season's edition of the UM Holiday Tournament, Dec. 28-29.
Wisconsin and Delaware State will kick off the tourney Friday at 5 p.m., while the Canes will square off against Central Connecticut 30 minutes after the conclusion of the opener.
The winners will clash in a 7 p.m. matchup on Saturday, with the consolation game beginning at 5 p.m.
Among the visiting teams, Miami has only faced Delaware State before and only on one occasion, a 105-62 victory in this same tournament in 1997.
UM HOLIDAY TOURNAMENT HISTORY
The Annual Holiday Tournament has been held in 30 of the last 31 seasons and Miami has compiled a 44-26 record in the tourney over that span. The Canes have claimed the last two tournament titles and will look for a third consecutive championship this weekend.
IMPRESSIVE START TO CONFERENCE PLAY
For the first time, Miami's ACC schedule will consist of 18 games. Due to the additional games, Miami was forced to play a conference game in December for the first time since 2003 when still a member of the Big East. The Canes seemed to welcome the early challenge as they walloped NC State 79-53. It was the fifth straight win over the Wolfpack for the Canes.
PEPPER TOO HOT FOR NC STATE TO HANDLE
Miami's 6-6 center Shawnice "Pepper" Wilson has faced NC State three times since transferring to UM after her sophomore season. In those three contests, she has averaged 11.3 points and 14 rebounds and even had a career-best night as a junior, scoring 17 points and grabbing 17 rebounds in leading her team to victory.
GREAT GAME, GREAT SEASON
Morgan Stroman may have had her the best game of her career on Dec. 8 against Davidson. The senior recorded the 19th double-double of her career with 17 points and 13 rebounds. However, she filled the stat sheet, leading the Canes with a career-high six assists, four blocks and four steals.
On the season, Stroman leads the team with 12.2 points, 8.5 rebounds, 2.7 steals and 1.9 blocks per game.
CANES HAND PENN STATE FIRST LOSS
Sixth-ranked Penn State came to the BankUnited Center on Nov. 29 with a perfect 5-0 record. However, the Hurricanes forced the Lady Lions into 20 first-half turnovers and held on for a 69-65 victory.
Morgan Stroman led the Canes with 15 points and five steals, while Stefanie Yderstrom and Michelle Woods added 13 and 11 points, respectively.
At No. 6, Penn State was a the second-best ranked team Miami has ever defeated (No. 5 Maryland - 2012).
UM THANKSGIVING TOURNAMENT HONORS
Seniors Stefanie Yderstrom and Morgan Stroman were recognized for their outstanding play in leading the Hurricanes to a UM Thanksgiving Tournament title with wins over FAU and Radford.
Yderstrom led all scorers with 19 points against FAU and Stroman finished each contest with 11 rebounds. Against Radford, Stroman also poured in 22 points, just one shy of her career-best. It was her first double-double of the season. For her efforts, Stroman was named the tournament's MVP, while Yderstrom earned all-tourney honors.
NO SOPHOMORE SLUMP FOR WOODS
In her first game of the 2012-13 season, sophomore Michelle Woods hit five three-pointers on her way to a career-best 19 points. In the very next game, the guard from Naples, Fla., scored a new career-best of 20 points in a 69-63 win at Richmond.
Woods came on strong in the second half of Miami's loss to Tennessee, helping the Canes erase a 27-point deficit, scoring a team-high 17 points. After 10 games, the guard is averaging 10.5 points per game, good for third on the team.
A GREAT FIRST IMPRESSION
Junior Maria Brown made her first career start in the UM Thanksgiving Tournament final against Radford. The forward responded with eight points and nine rebounds.
On the season, Brown is averaging 3.2 points and 3.7 rebounds per game and is shooting 43 percent from the floor.
GETTING OFF ON THE RIGHT FOOT
After their rout of UNF, the Hurricanes are 32-9 in season-opening games and are a combined 24-3 when they open the season at home, including a perfect 8-0 record when opening the season at the BankUnited Center.
MEIER ENTERS EIGHTH SEASON AT MIAMI
In 2012-13, head coach Katie Meier and her staff will begin their eighth year at the helm in Coral Gables. The Hurricanes advanced to the NCAA tournament second round for the second consecutive season, finishing second in the Atlantic Coast Conference with a 14-2 record. Overall, Miami finished with a 26-6 record, the third straight 20-win season for Meier.
BIG-TIME TEAM ON THE SMALL SCREEN
The Jan. 6 meeting with Virginia will be the first of nine regular season games that will be televised this season.
HITTING THE BOOKS
Stefanie Yderstrom has been named to the ACC All-Academic Team each of the last two seasons. The senior is a sports administration major, has earned an overall 3.28 GPA and a was named to the dean's list last semester with a 3.66 GPA.
RETURNING ALL-ACC PERFORMERS
Miami returns two All-ACC players for the 2012-13 campaign. Sharp-shooting point guard Stefanie Yderstrom earned third-team conference honors last season, leading the ACC with 68 3-pointers. Morgan Stroman was well on her way to earning conference honors for the second consecutive season. However, midway through the season, the 2009 McDonald's All-American tore her Achilles tendon, ending her junior campaign. As a sophomore, the forward earned third-team honors.
1,000 POINT CLUB
Miami senior Morgan Stroman became the 22nd Hurricane to score 1,000 points in her career, as she scored seven points against FAU in the first game of the UM Thanksgiving Tournament. Riquna Williams and Shenise Johnson were the last two Canes to surpass the milestone.
Senior Stefanie Yderstrom is just 54 points shy of becoming the 23rd player in program history to join the club.
STARTING A NEW STREAK
Prior to its Nov. 18 loss vs. No. 20 Tennessee, the Hurricanes held the nation's second-longest home win streak at 41 games. Miami had gone 1,001 days without dropping a game inside the BankUnited Center. Since the loss, Miami has won six straight home games.
In her first game on the court since an Achilles' tendon tear midway through the 2011-12 season, senior forward Morgan Stroman scored 17 points on 7-of-11 shooting and led her team with eight rebounds.
UM STUDENT-ATHLETES SET GSR RECORD
The University of Miami recorded a department-wide school-record Graduation Success Rate (GSR) of 93 percent, according to the rates released Oct. 25 by the NCAA.
As a department, Miami's 93 percent GSR ranks fourth among ACC schools and is eighth overall among FBS schools. Overall, the University of Miami athletic department has improved from 77 to 93 percent from 2005 to 2012, a year after UM student-athletes posted a then-record 89 percent GSR in 2011. UM has exceeded the NCAA average GSR in each of the last eight years.
Six UM teams compiled GSR marks of 100 percent; men's diving and golf posted its eighth consecutive perfect GSR mark, while women's tennis recorded its fifth straight GSR score of 100 percent. Also adding perfect GSR scorers were women's rowing, women's golf, women's swimming and volleyball.
The most recent Division I Graduation Success Rates are based on the four entering classes from 2002-2003 through 2005-06.
UM BRINGS IN 11TH-RANKED CLASS
Head coach Katie Meier officially announced the program's signees on Nov. 15. The group, comprised of three high school standouts, is Adrienne Motley (Newport News, Va.), Nigia Greene (Atlanta, Ga.) and Jessica Thomas (Gainesville, Fla.). The trio will join the Hurricanes for the 2013-14 academic year.
Motley, a 5-9 guard from Woodside High School, has been ranked the No. 27 overall prospect and the seventh best point guard in the nation by ESPN HoopGurlz.
Greene is a four-star prospect according to ESPN HoopGurlz. She is ranked No. 41 overall, and the ninth-best guard in the nation.
Thomas is ranked the 48th best point guard in the nation by ESPN HoopGurlz. In 2011, the 5-6 guard led the Buchholz High School Bobcats to the semifinals of the Florida Girls State Basketball Playoffs. She is the younger sister of Hurricane legend Lamar Thomas.
A PREMIER SCHEDULE
In addition to the always exciting ACC schedule, Miami welcomed two top-ranked programs to the BankUnited Center. On Nov. 18, the Canes faced Tennessee for the second consecutive season. Then on Nov. 29 No. 6 Penn State made the trip to Coral Gables as part of the ACC/Big Ten Women's Basketball Challenge.
The Canes welcome freshmen Caprice Dennis (G, 5-9) from Detroit, Keyona Hayes (F, 6-1) from Marietta, Ga., and Macy Keen (C, 6-6) from nearby Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., to the 2012-13 squad.
In their debuts, Dennis finished the night with five points, three assists and two steals. Hayes had four points and Keen added three rebounds and a free throw.
Before Stroman's injury last season, Yderstrom averaged 9.1 points per game and scored in double figures in nine of 19 games. In the final 13 games of the season, the Swede scored in double digits nine times, twice setting her career high with 22 points vs. Virginia Tech, then 26 at No. 8 Maryland. The guard averaged 13.5 points and connected on 28 3-pointers.
FORMER STARS IN THE WNBA
In April, Miami's Shenise Johnson and Riquna Williams were selected by the San Antonio Silver Stars and the Tulsa Shock with the fifth and 17th picks, respectively, in the 2012 WNBA Draft. Johnson and Williams became the third and fourth players in Miami's history to be selected in the WNBA Draft. Williams was named to the 2012 WNBA All-Rookie Team.
CANES ENTER SEASON IN THE POLLS
For the second consecutive season, the Hurricanes enter their year with a spot in each the AP and the ESPN/USA Today Coaches polls. Miami was ranked No. 23 in the coaches and No. 24 in the AP according to the voters. UM is currently ranked No. 23 in the coaches and No. 21 in the AP polls.
HISTORIC DEFENSIVE EFFORT
The Hurricanes held UNF to just 24 points on 14 percent shooting in the season-opening 77-24 victory. The 24 points allowed in UM history against an NCAA opponent.
CANES GIVE BACK
Miami women's basketball played host to its annual Thanksgiving tournament Nov. 23-24 and the Canes took some time away from the court to give back to those in need.
Head Coach Katie Meier and her coaching staff and players partnered with the Miami Coalition for the Homeless to feed over 200 of the Coalition's members from various shelters throughout the city.
Those traveling with the Coalition enjoyed the game between the Hurricanes and Florida Atlantic. Immediately afterwards, Coach Meier, Miami players and coaches joined the Miami Coalition for the Homeless in the BankUnited Center Multi-Purpose Room for a meal.
STATS AREN'T EVERYTHING, BUT...
The Canes dominated certain statistical categories in the season-opening win against UNF: outscoring their opponent 42-4 in the paint; holding a 43-8 advantage in points off turnovers and forcing 34 turnovers.