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November 20, 2013

LEAVING ON A JET PLANE

All our bags are packed, we're ready to go . . . we hit the road for the first time this season on Friday to play UTEP in El Paso, Texas. While team travel can be grueling, it also offers some wonderful opportunities to grow as individuals and as a team.

This will be the first time in Texas for many of our players. It will also be the first time our team walks through an airport and stays in a hotel together. Our players will follow a very detailed itinerary and a number of team travel rules. We emphasize that it is a "business trip" that includes a big game, a practice, film sessions and study hall. But we also understand and embrace the opportunity to have fun, bond and grow as a unit.

OUR OREGONIAN

Catelyn's Countdown star, Catelyn Preston, is one of this year's newcomers. She is a 5'10 freshmen guard/forward from Oregon City, Oregon. Catelyn was born in Newark, California and moved to Oregon when she was four. Catelyn has had a ball in her hands (or on her foot) her whole life.

Catelyn started her sports career as a kindergartener playing in the Kinderkicks soccer program. By third grade, Catelyn was playing on a basketball team coached by her dad. When high school rolled around, Catelyn was playing soccer, softball, basketball and competed for the track team in javelin, shot put and discus. During Catelyn's senior year of high school, she played varsity basketball, was a kicker on Oregon City's varsity football team and was Homecoming Queen. Catelyn's biggest fans are her family - Brad, Margo, Meaghan, and Brysen - who she describes as "supportive, loving, and caring."

FREE THROWS ARE FREE

College basketball season started two weeks ago and if you have watched any women's or men's games you may have noticed a trend - a lot more fouls are being called. Over the past two decades, scoring in college basketball has gone down. In an effort to make college basketball freer flowing and higher scoring, officials have been mandated to call all hand-checking on the perimeter and contact in the post that would have been ignored in past years. The teams that do the best job attacking the basket on offense and playing defense with their feet now have a distinct advantage. Additionally, the ability to not only get but make free throws is critical. Thanks to Catelyn for adding our season free throw percentage and free throw ranking in the Big Sky to her countdown.

FROST BITE

Our lone senior, Amanda Frost (Riverside, CA) shares her thoughts on team travel: “Road trips bring us together. We’re together 24/7 - we sit together, we eat together, we study together, we play together. We learn more about each other and grow closer and more together.”

CATELYN'S COUNTDOWN

Our goals for the 2013-2014 season:

Win the Big Sky Championship,

Maintain a team GPA of 3.0 or higher,

Perform 150 hours of community service.

Freshman Catelyn Preston (Oregon City, OR) keeps tabs on important dates and numbers for our program. Drumroll please . . .

Days until semester grades are posted = 28 days

Days until first Big Sky home opener (Montana, Jan. 2nd) = 44

Days until the Big Sky Championship = 116

Hours of community service performed to date = 78

Free throw percent and Big Sky FT rank = 8th place, 66.7%

RAVEN AND ERIKKA'S QUOTE OF THE WEEK

WEAR THE BLUE AND GOLD - SHARE THE PHOTOS

Friends of NAU Women’s Basketball, Helen Meisenhelder, Dayl Ragon, Leigh Wilbanks, Wendy Hession, Amy Brookes and Layla DeStaffany show their Lumberjack Spirit at Elway’s in Denver, Colorado.

WOMEN'S BASKETBALL TICKET CENTRAL

Next Home Game: Saturday, December 14 vs. UT Arlington. 11:30 a.m. at the Walkup Skydome

Season Tickets: Season Tickets start at just $50! Take a look at the 2013-14 season ticket brochure by clicking here or call (928)523-0639 for more information. 

Single Game Tickets: Come check us out for a game! Single game tickets are just $5. Purchase tickets online by clicking here or by calling (928)523-5661. 

Thanks for your interest in, and support of, NAU Women's Basketball. Until next week please:

1. Follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/NAUwomensbasketball), Twitter (@NAU_WBB), and at www.nauathletics.com

2. Wear the Blue and Gold with pride (especially on Friday).

3. If you know of someone not receiving this newsletter who you think might enjoy receiving it, please send me their email address and I will add them to the email list.

4. Make it a great week to be a Lumberjack!

Go Jacks!

Sue Darling

Head Women's Basketball Coach

Northern Arizona University

sue.darling@nau.edu