Thursday, February 14, 2002 Volume 67, Issue 93



Cougars look for wins without freshman Bush

By Brad Sebastian
Daily Cougar Staff

By Brian Viney/The Daily Cougar

Sophomore guard Nicole Oliver takes a shot against Tulane Feb. 8. Oliver and her teammates have two huge conference
match-ups this weekend.

The UH women's basketball team (17-6, 7-3 in Conference USA) hits the road Friday for two critical conference games over the

Head coach Joe Curl knows the importance these late-season games can have in determining a team's postseason future.

"We cannot take anyone for granted," Curl said. "Both games (this weekend) are winnable, but both teams are capable of
pounding us and beating us."

The Cougars will be without freshman guard Shondra Bush, who broke a finger on her right hand in the first half of the Cougars'
win over Southern Mississippi on Sunday. The break will keep Bush out for at least two weeks.

"Shondra was either stabbing at a steal or catching a ball ... and (the ball) hit her right hand," Curl said. "The good thing is it
didn't break in the joint. They might have to do some surgery to pin it, but because it's there they just casted it."

The injury comes at a time when Bush seemed to be hitting her stride. Bush is coming off a phenomenal weekend in which she
scored a combined 29 points against Tulane and Southern Miss.

Depth will now be an issue for the Cougars, so the recent play of freshman Ashley Cotton is encouraging. Cotton's steady
improvement has been noticed by her teammates.

"She's grown a lot," said Chandi Jones. "She plays like a sophomore now."

On Friday night, the Cougars will need Cotton and the rest of the bench to pick it up when they take on the St. Louis Billikens
(11-12, 4-6 C-USA).

The Billikens are coming off two road losses to Cincinnati and Louisville. 

The Billikens are led by sophomore Angie Lewis. The 6-1 forward averages 13.7 points and 8.4 rebounds per game.

The Cougars will also have to defend against speedy guard Christan Shelton. Shelton averages 8.7 points per game and earned
team MVP honors last season.

On Sunday, the Cougars will face the Memphis Tigers (11-12, 5-5 C-USA).

The match-up to watch will be Memphis guard Karla McFayden against UH's Chandi Jones. McFayden and Jones are two of the
best guards in the conference.

McFayden recorded an unusual triple-double earlier this season versus Charlotte with double figures in rebounds, assists and

She earned the triple-double without attempting a single shot.

While the 5-6 McFayden and her teammates are quick, they can play physical basketball as well. 

The Tigers are led in the paint by junior Shannon Hamp. At 6-2, Hamp can be a solid post presence. She is coming off a 10-point,
five-rebound performance against Cincinnati.

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