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Thursday, November 26, 2015

KU women’s hoops at a glance

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When: 7:30 p.m. today

Where: Moody Coliseum, Dallas

Who: Northern Illinois

Series: First meeting

SMU Thanksgiving Classic: The Kansas University women’s basketball team and first-year coach Brandon Schneider are spending their holiday weekend at a two-day mini-tournament hosted by SMU. KU opens against Northern Illinois, out of the Mid America Conference, and will face either SMU or Cal State-Fullerton on Saturday afternoon, depending on which teams win tonight’s games.

Road trip: Coming off their first loss of the season, Monday at Arizona, the Jayhawks have some early tests away from Allen Fieldhouse this week. Before KU left for its three-game excursion, Schneider said the first road trip of the year can be great for team bonding.

“I love it, because I get to still be part of the team, even though I’m the coach,” Schneider said. “I like to travel. I like kind of being hunkered down in the hotel room. But it’s also a chance to really talk to our team about these trips. They’re business trips, not vacations. We’ll try to have some fun, obviously, but there’s some times when we’ve really got to lock in and focus and make sure we’re as prepared and focused as we need to be.”

Streaking: Through three games this season, junior KU forward Caelynn Manning-Allen is making 59.1 percent of her shot attempts and scoring 9.3 points per game. She set a career high with 12 points against Texas Southern, and also tied a personal best with four blocks in the season opener.

Slumping: Freshman guard Kylee Kopatich looks to bounce back from a tough outing in her first career road game. Kopatich, a starter, shot 1-for-12 from the floor and 1-for-8 from three-point range at Arizona. Schneider has a lot of confidence in the first-year guard, though, and while one off game has her shooting 22.2 percent on three-pointers, Kopatich is averaging 9.7 points — second on the team to sophomore Lauren Aldridge’s 13.7.

Probable starters

Kansas (2-1)

G — Lauren Aldridge, 5-7, so.

G — Aisia Robertson, 5-7, fr.

G — Kylee Kopatich, 5-10, fr.

F — Jada Brown, 6-0, jr.

F — Caelynn Manning-Allen, 6-4, jr.

Northern Illinois (2-1)

G — Ally Lehman, 5-10, jr.

G — Lacia Gorman, 5-6, sr.

G — Mikayla Voigt, 5-9, fr.

F — Natecia Augusta, 6-0, sr.

F — Kelly Smith, 6-1, soph.

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