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Women's Basketball Opens 2012-13 Campaign at North Dakota State

The Crimson returns 13 letterwinners from last season's team which advanced to the WNIT second round (Gil Talbot). 

The Storyline
The Harvard women's basketball team will tip off its 39th season of play against North Dakota State Friday, Nov. 9 at 6 p.m. EST in Fargo, N.D. This will mark the first meeting between the Crimson and Bison, although, Harvard does own a 1-0 record against the Summit League with an 84-76 victory over Oral Roberts at the Navy Classic on Nov. 19, 2010.

Fans unable to make the trip west can follow all of the action live online through GoBison.com. 

Tweetables
Follow @HarvardCrimson, the official Twitter handle of Harvard Athletics, for all the latest news and notes on your favorite Crimson student-athletes and teams.

Use the hashtag #GoCrimson to see what fans are saying about Crimson athletics.

  • Victoria Lippert enters Friday's game 5 pts. shy of Elizabeth Proudfit '96 (1,113 pts.) for 13th place in @HarvardHoops history.
  • Victoria Lippert's next 3 will break a tie with former @WNBA star Allison Feaster '98 (134 3FG) for 3rd place in @HarvardHoops history. 
  • .@TemiFagbenle, 1 of 2 Olympians in @Ivy_Athletics WBB history, will make her @HarvardHoops debut Friday #London2012 @GBBasketball.
  • .@CSMadness named Christine Clark to preseason 1st team All-Ivy & Shilpa Tummala preseason Mid-Major Frosh of Year & Ivy Frosh of Year.

Look Whose Back
13 letterwinners, four starters and two All-Ivy League selections return from last year's team, which went 18-12 overall and advanced to the second round of the WNIT. Senior Victoria Lippert, a three-time second team All-Ivy pick, headlines the group and enters the year ranked 14th in program history with 1,108 career points. Junior Christine Clark was named to the Ancient Eight first team a year ago and is on pace to become the next Crimson to eclipse the 1,000 point plateau as she enters the season with 796 career points. Senior co-captains Emma Golen and Miriam Rutzen also return, as do classmate Elle Hagedorn and junior Missy Mullins, who both saw significant playing time in 2011-12.

Secret Weapon
Sophomore Temi Fagbenle, who did not compete last season while sitting a year in residency, will be added to the fold for 2012-13. Fagbenle was ranked as the 13th-best recruit in the Class of 2011 by ESPN after leading Blair Academy to a state title and being named the New Jersey Gatorade Player of the Year. This summer, she started three games at power forward for Great Britain in the London Olympic Games, becoming just the second women's basketball player in Ivy League history to play in the Olympics.

Fresh Faces
Harvard announced the addition of three freshmen to its roster for 2012-13, including the program's second ESPN Top 100 Recruit in guard Shilpa Tummala. As a senior, Tummala led St. Mary's High School to a perfect 30-0 record and a final national ranking of No. 1 by ESPN, USA Today and Maxpreps. Tummala captained St. Mary's to back-to-back state championships as a junior and senior and helped the team to runner-up finishes as a freshman and sophomore.

Also joining the Crimson this year are forward AnnMarie Healy and guard Kit Metoyer. Healy led Providence Academy to the Minnesota State Championship as a senior and to a fourth-place finish as a junior. Metoyer, meanwhile, guided Cypress Falls High School to a 75-4 record in her final two seasons and a national ranking of 13 at the conclusion of the 2010-11 season by USA Today.

Related Article: Women's Basketball Announces Healy, Metoyer and Tummala as the Class of 2016

Preseason Poll
Harvard was picked second in the 2012-13 Ivy League preseason poll after posting an 18-12 record a year ago and advancing to the second round of the WNIT. The Crimson received 120 points in the poll and garnered four first-place votes, its highest total since receiving 115 points and five first-place votes in the 2009-10 poll.

2012-13 Ivy League Preseason Poll
1.    Princeton (13) 132
2.    Harvard (4) 120
3.    Yale 96
4.    Penn 76
5.    Brown 61
6.    Cornell 58
7.    Dartmouth 46
8.    Columbia 23

Preseason Plaudits
Junior Christine Clark and freshman Shilpa Tummala were honored by College Sports Madness in its annual preseason awards. Clark, a 2011-12 All-Ivy League first-team selection, was named to the website's preseason All-Ivy League first team, while Tummala was named the preseason Mid-Major Freshman of the Year and preseason Ivy League Freshman of the Year.

An Olympian Among Us
Sophomore Temi Fagbenle became just the second student-athlete in Ivy League women's basketball history to compete in the Olypmics this summer as she averaged 4.8 ppg, 4.0 rpg and 1.2 bpg at power forward for Great Britain. Fagbenle appeared in all five games for the host country with three starts and averaged 20.0 minutes per contest.

Related Article: Fagbenle and GB Basketball Conclude Pool Play at 2012 London Olympics

USA Basketball
Freshman Shilpa Tummala, who placed second in the National High School Three-Point Shooting Competition at the 2012 NCAA Men's Final Four, was invited to  the 2012 USA Basketball U18 National Team Trials held at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. The final 12-women squad for the 2012 FIBA U18 Championship was selected after two days of competition.

Head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith is no stranger to USA Basketball as she has had the opportunity to coach for USA Basketball three times in her career. In 2005, Delaney-Smith served as the head coach of the contingent that won gold at the World University Games in Izmir, Turkey. The winningest coach in Ivy League women's basketball history also won gold as an assistant at the 2003 FIBA World Championships for Young Women and helped the U.S. to a gold medal at the 2007 Pan American Games.

Related Article: Tummala to Compete for Spot on USA Basketball U18 National Team

Club 1,000
Senior Victoria Lippert became the 17th member of Harvard's 1,000 point club last year and enters this season ranked 14th in program history with 1,108 points. Junior Christine Clark is on pace to become the next Crimson to eclipse the 1,000-point plateau as she has recorded 796 points through two seasons.

Including this year, Harvard has had a 1,000 point scorer on the floor in four of the last five seasons. Additionally, each of Harvard's 17 1,000 point scorers have been coached by head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith.

Milestone Moments
Victoria Lippert, Christine Clark and Miriam Rutzen will each look to cement their places in Harvard women's basketball history this season. Lippert currently ranks 14th in program history with 1,108 career points while also ranking third in three-point field goals made (134). Clark's 218 career free throws are seventh most in program history, and she is also on pace to become the next member of Harvard's 1,000-point club. Rutzen, meanwhile, is eighth in program annals with 63 blocked shots.

For a complete listing of Harvard's individual and team records, visit the Harvard women's basketball media center.

Career Points
1.   Allison Feaster '98 2,312
12. Barbarann Keffer '87 1,169
13. Elizabeth Proudfit '96 1,113
14. Victora Lippert '13 1,108
--   Christine Clark '14 796

Career 3-Point Field Goals
1. Erin Maher '92 245
2. Christine Matera '10 170
3. Allison Feaster '97 134
    Victoria Lippert '13 134

Career Free Throws Made
1. Allison Feaster '97 475
5. Elaine Holpuch '83 233
6. Barbarann Keffer '87 229
7. Christine Clark '14 218

Career Blocked Shots
1. Sarah Duncan '88 279
6. Tammy Butler '95 78
7. Emma Moretzsohn '09 68
8. Miriam Rutzen '13 63

Captaining the Ship
Seniors Emma Golen and Miriam Rutzen have been voted by their teammates as captains for the 2012-13 season. Golen started 29 games for the Crimson last year, averaging 9.2 points and 5.2 rebounds. Rutzen, meanwhile, started all 30 games and put up 5.5 points with 6.3 boards.

Opening Act
Harvard is 19-19 all-time in season openers and 17-15 under head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith. The Crimson fell at Iowa, 90-81, in its 2011-12 opener to snap a two-game winning streak in season-opening contests.

In 38 seasons of Ivy League play, Harvard is 21-17 in conference openers and 18-12 under head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith.

Inside Ivy League Basketball
"Inside Ivy League Basketball," a weekly online radio show dedicated to Ivy League men's and women's basketball, returns for its second season in 2012-13.

Hosted by Dan Loney and Brian Seltzer, "Inside Ivy League Basketball" takes in-depth look at all the news and notes surrounding Ivy League men's and women's basketball on and off the courts. "Inside" runs a two-man weave this season with episodes on Mondays and Thursdays at 7 p.m. on BlogTalkRadio.com with every episode available on-demand via BlogTalkRadio and IvyLeagueSports.com.     

Each episode is packed with highlights, statistics and expert analysis in its 'Around the Ancient Eight' segment. With its 'Program Profile' segment, the show visits with players, coaches and administrators who impact Ivy League men's and women's basketball, both past and present. With its 'Ivy Insights' segment, local and national media join the show to give their thoughts and perspectives on covering the conference.

Via Facebook (search Inside Ivy League Basketball) and Twitter (@insideivyhoops), fans and alumni can follow the show and get a chance to test their Ivy acumen with the 'Trivia Talk' segment. The first person posting the correct answer to each week's trivia question wins a gift certificate to the League's official online store at shop.ivyleaguesports.com.

Check IvyLeagueSports.com each week for this season's episode schedule and guest lineups.