U’s Whitfield out for year with injury

Ryan Schuster

Ayesha Whitfield, a freshman shooting guard on the Gophers women’s basketball team, will have surgery next week after suffering a season-ending knee injury in a Dec. 28 game at Iowa.
The meniscus tear in her right knee was initially believed to be less serious. But Whitfield wasn’t able to practice with the team the following week because the swelling in her knee continued, making surgery necessary.
Whitfield’s operation is scheduled for Jan. 21.
The Detroit native was third on the team in scoring at seven points a game before she was injured. Whitfield and fellow freshman Theresa LeCuyer are the last players on the team to be recruited by former coach Linda Hill-MacDonald.
Iverson breaks 1,000-point plateau
Senior center Angie Iverson became only the 11th player in school history to score at least 1,000 career points with her first basket Friday night at Illinois. She went on to score 18 points in an 86-60 loss to the Illini and 10 points during Sunday’s 81-73 road victory over Michigan State.
And she could have scored even more.
Iverson’s performance in Sunday’s win was somewhat marred by her fouling out in only 15 minutes of action, but the team rallied around LeCuyer, who scored 18 points in 14 minutes in place of Iverson.
“With Angie only playing 15 minutes, we still executed and continued to play within our game,” Gophers coach Cheryl Littlejohn said. “I don’t think her fouling out was a factor.”
Iverson is 10th on Minnesota’s all-time scoring list with 1,027 career points, only three points away from former Gopher Shannon Loeblein, who is in ninth place.
The 6-foot Owatonna product leads the Gophers in scoring (15.5 points a game) and rebounding (7.7 per game) and is second in the Big Ten in offensive rebounds, averaging four a contest.
Understatement of the Week
“It was a big win for us because it’s our first Big Ten win,” LeCuyer said of Sunday’s win at Michigan State. “It’s also big because it’s a road win. It’s always tough to win on the road.”
Not only was Sunday’s 81-73 victory at Michigan State the Gophers’ first Big Ten win of the season, it also ended a 27-game road losing streak that stretched back to an 81-76 overtime victory over Indiana in Bloomington on Jan. 22, 1995.

Charity Stripe Points
ù Friday night’s home game against Ohio State has been changed from a 7 p.m. to an 8 p.m. start because it is being shown live on Midwest Sports Channel.
ù The Gophers beat Ohio State, their next opponent, 66-64 on Feb. 2 last season at the Sports Pavilion in the most recent meeting between the two teams. The victory ended Minnesota’s record 32-game Big Ten losing streak.
ù Minnesota is last in the Big Ten in scoring offense, averaging 64.8 points a game and is ninth in points allowed at 72.6 points a game.