Marshall Women Release 2008-09 Hoops Schedule

Thundering Herd women's basketball coach Royce Chadwick announced the 2008-09 schedule, which will feature 29 regular season games and the largest home schedule in 26 seasons. After playing 21 out of 33 games on the road last season, Marshall will play 16 games at the Cam Henderson Center this season, the most home games since the 1982-83 season when the Herd played 17 contests at home.

"It was very difficult last year, but I think the experience made our team tough once March rolled around," Chadwick said. "But we are going to reap the benefits this year having those home games, it will be huge because we have so many new players."

Marshall will host two pre-season exhibition games on November 2 and 8, facing the Exodus All Stars and the DT-3 All Stars. The regular season for MU will begin with a road game against former Southern Conference foe Appalachian State. Following the opener, the Herd will play the next five contests at home and eight of the next nine. The important stretch begins with the November 17 home opener against North Texas.

On the following weekend, MU will host its annual Fifth Third Classic, which will feature Louisiana Monroe, Morgan State and Tennessee State. The Herd will face Tennessee State in its opening game of the tournament. Games against Morehead State and UT Arlington wrap up the home stand before the Herd travels to South Orange, N.J. on December 6 for its first ever meeting against Big East member Seton Hall. Marshall will then return to Huntington for three games before Christmas break, facing Ohio U., Houston Baptist and Richmond prior to break.

After a nine-day layoff for the holidays, MU will return to action at the Terrapin Classic on College Park, Md. The Herd will face SEC foe and 2008 WNIT participant Mississippi State on December 29 before facing either Maryland or UNC Asheville the next day. Maryland, who came to Huntington two seasons ago as the top team in the nation, was a No. 1 seed in last year's NCAA Tournament after recording a 30-3 record.

Four days later, Marshall will embark on its fourth season in Conference USA, opening with three games on the road. The conference schedule begins with a January 3 game at East Carolina. Things do not get an easier from there as MU will face SMU and Tulsa the next week, teams MU has a combined 1-6 record against. That trip begins with a game at Moody Coliseum against defending C-USA champion SMU on Thursday January 8 before facing Tulsa two days later.

The Chesapeake Energy Capital Classic is set to take place on the 14th as MU will face up against West Virginia. Last year, Marshall played the 12th-ranked Mountaineers tough before falling by a score of 58-51. After the Capital Classic, the Herd will open its conference home schedule with three games at the Cam Henderson Center. East Carolina opens up that part of the schedule on January 18, followed by games against UAB and Memphis the following week. Marshall will then travel to Hattiesburg, Miss. to face the Golden Eagles in what could be a battle of the top two teams in C-USA. That will be followed by a trip to UCF.

The Herd begins the final month of the regular season with a home contest against Tulane on February 5. Three days later, MU will travel to face defending regular season champion UTEP. Four of the Herd's final six games will be at home, beginning the next week with a Friday game against UCF. On February 15, one of the most highly anticipated games in team history will take place. The Herd will play host to Southern Miss in a game that will mark the first game in program history to be nationally televised on ESPN2. It will also mark the annual Jam the Cam game.

Marshall's final road trip of the season will take them to Birmingham, Ala. to face UAB on the 20th before traveling to Memphis on the 22nd. The regular season will wrap up with home games against Houston and Rice. The 2009 Conference USA Tournament will take place from March 5-8. Tulane University will host the tournament at Fogelman Arena in New Orleans. Marshall will look to continue its tournament success after winning two games last season in Orlando.

Marshall returns four starters from last season's team, which came within minutes of advancing to the Conference USA Championship game. Senior Casey Baker leads the group, which also includes juniors Alyssa Hammond and Chantelle Handy along with sophomore Tynikki Crook, who recorded a double-double in each of Marshall's tournament games last season.

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