GOPHERS WOMEN'S BASKETBALL GAMEDAY
7 p.m. vs. Norfolk State at Williams Arena
TV; radio: Streamed on BTN+; 96.7-FM
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Kent Youngblood's preview:
Opening bell: The Gophers (5-1) have won two straight since their only loss of the season, to Connecticut. That includes a 53-point win over Cal State-Northridge and a 13-point victory Sunday against Stony Brook that included an 18-0 run after the score was tied in the third quarter. In Norfolk State the Gophers get another competitive mid-major team. The 6-1 Spartans led Division I in field goal defense last year (31.5%) and are holding teams to 37.6% shooting so far this year. The Spartans have three of their top five scorers back from last season, when they went 26-7, won the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference regular season and tournament titles and made it to the NCAA tournament. Leading the way is top scorer junior forward Kierra Wheeler, who went to Cooper High School. She is averaging 14.8 points per game.
Watch her: Mallory Heyer is coming off a 17-point, seven-rebound game vs. Stony Brook in which she hit four of six three-pointers, three coming in the 18-0 run that broke the game open. G Amaya Battle is coming off a seven-point, 12-rebound, nine-assist game.
Forecast: The Gophers had stretches where it was difficult to score against Stony Brook, a physical, defensive-minded team. It will only be more challenging in this game against a veteran team with a lot of experience from last year.
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