Women’s basketball meets South Dakota State in the second round of Battle4Atlantis

PARADISE ISLAND, BAHAMAS – The Rutgers women’s basketball team (3-2) will enter the second round of Battle4Atlantis against RV/RV South Dakota State on Sunday, November 20 at 5 p.m

RU will return to the Imperial Arena on Paradise Island, Bahamas, for the second of three games the team will play on November 19-21.

on the call

  • Games will be streamed on FloHoops, except for the championship game (ESPN) and third place competition (ESPNU).
  • Jill Painter Lopez (PxP) and Isis Young (analyst) will join the conference call in addition to Dani Wexelman (reporter).
  • Listen to WRSU 88.7 FM

last time out

The Scarlet Knights fell 94-54 to 11th-12th Tennessee in the first round of Battle4Atlantis on Saturday afternoon.

Kaylene Smikle led the team with a career-high 16 points. Awa Sidibe led the team with eight boards and added 10 points. Kassondra Brown also scored 12 points to round out the group of three Scarlet Knights in double digits.


This is Rutger’s first trip to the Bahamas since 2019 when the team defeated Vanderbilt and Georgia Tech to win the Junkanoo Jam Championship. This will be the team’s first trip to Battle4Atlantis.

In addition to Tennessee, UCLA, the state of South Dakota, Louisville, Gonzaga, Texas and Marquette are also participating in the three-day tournament.



Three or more Scarlet Knights have scored double digits in every game so far this season. Awa Sidibe has led the charge, scoring more than 10 points in all five competitions. RU is 2-0 this season if five or more players go into doubles.

Also, Sidibe (11 points, 10 rebounds) and Cornwell (10 points, 10 rebounds) scored their first doubles doubles of their careers against Seton Hall (Nov. 11).

Strong off the boards

In all three wins for Rutgers this season, Rutgers has grabbed more rebounds than his opponent.

The team has hauled in more than 35 rebounds in four of five games, including a season-high 50 against NJIT (Nov. 13). The team also achieved their highest rebound margin against the Highlanders, +20.

Chyna Cornwell leads the Scarlet Knights off the boards with 8.0 rebounds per game.

The Scarlet Knights vs. the Top-25

With the release of the AP Top 25 and USA Today/WBCA Coaches Preseason Polls, RU will face seven teams placed between the two rankings, including six Big Ten and three non-conference opponents:

  • #4/6 Iowa*
  • No. 8/15 State of Ohio*
  • No. 11/5 Tennessee
  • No. 12/11 Indiana*
  • No. 19/18 Maryland*
  • No. 22/22 Nebraska*
  • No. 23/23 Michigan*

*Big Ten competition

The poll also names future opponents Princeton and South Dakota State, both of whom receive votes.

Other teams named in the top 25 polls at the Battle4Atlantis tournament are No. 3/5 Texas and No. 6/4 Louisville, UCLA and Gonzaga also receive votes. UCLA (31) and Gonzaga (5) also receive votes.

Stay at home

The Scarlet Knights will appear in 12 non-conference games this season before entering Big Ten play.

Of the 12 games, RU will play eight at their home pitch at Jersey Mike’s Arena, including the first four. The only time the team leaves “On The Banks” is three games in the Battle4Atlantis tournament, held in Paradise Island, Bahamas, and to face Boston College for the ACC/B1G challenge.

Washington returns to the Big Ten

The Washington era at Rutgers signals the head coach’s return to the Big Ten after serving 12 seasons as head coach at Penn State. From 2012 through 2014, the Lady Lions won three consecutive Big Ten regular-season titles, becoming one of four programs in conference history to win three or more consecutive regular-season titles. She led Penn State to two Sweet 16 appearances in 2012 and 2014 and developed 17 players to All-Big Ten status on 32 separate occasions.

Washington has been named Big Ten Coach of the Year three times (2012-14), twice WBCA Regional Coach of the Year (2012, 2013), and twice a WBCA National Coach of the Year finalist (2012, 2013). She was also voted Black Coaches Association (BCA) Coach of the Year in 2011 and 2014.

Successful staff

Washington won’t be the only new face on the sidelines this season, as she named Tasha Pointer, Nikki McCray-Penson and John Hampton as assistant coaches during the offseason.

Pointer returns with “On The Banks” and brings 18 years of coaching experience, including eight seasons on the sidelines with the Scarlet Knights from 2007-2015 Career 128-game career that produced program records totaling 839 assists and 292 steals while scoring 1,456 points. Pointer was inducted into the Rutgers Athletics Hall of Fame in 2008, which was also her first year on the coaching staff leading the Scarlet Knights to an NCAA Elite Eight, a Sweet 16 and a WNIT championship during seven postseason trips.

McCray-Penson comes to Piscataway, NJ with 15 years of collegiate coaching experience, most recently as head coaches at Mississippi State and Old Dominion, which followed a stellar collegiate career in Tennessee, nine seasons in the WNBA and two gold-medal-winning performances with the Team USA at the 1996 and 2000 Summer Olympics.

Former Clarkson University head coach Hampton has spent the last seven seasons at St. Joseph’s, including the last three as the Hawks’ assistant head coach. At St. Joe’s, Hampton helped lead the Hawks to the postseason twice, an Atlantic 10 Tournament title game, a Hawk Classic crown and a WNIT win. Hampton graduated from Mansfield University in 2008, where he joined the men’s basketball program as a walk-on and twice became the team’s MVP in 2007 and 2008. As a senior, he was selected as a PSAC All-Conference honoree.

Scarlet Knights on the big screen

The Scarlet Knights are set for eight appearances between Big Ten Network and Fox Sports 1.

  • vs. Ohio State – Dec. 4 – 12 p.m. (BTN)
  • vs. New Orleans – Dec 18 – 2pm (BTN)
  • vs. Maryland – Jan 2 – 2pm (BTN)
  • vs. Nebraska – Jan 7 – 2pm (BTN)
  • in Minnesota – January 12 – 8:30 p.m. (BTN)
  • vs. Michigan – Jan. 19 – 8:30 p.m. (BTN)
  • in Iowa – February 12 – 3 p.m. (FS1)
  • in Wisconsin – February 20 – 8 p.m. (BTN)
  • vs. Illinois – Feb 26 – 2:00 p.m. *Can be switched to B1G+

The entire run of the Big Ten tournament will also be televised nationally.

The remaining 11 home games on the schedule that are not televised will be streamed on Big Ten+.

History against the State of South Dakota

The first and only meeting between Rutgers and South Dakota State came in the first round of the 2004 Paradise Jam in the US Virgin Islands. Rutgers prevailed with 68:50.

Scouting The Jack Rabbits

After falling to then-No. 21/21 Creighton (69-78) to open the 2022-23 season, South Dakota State bounced back with back-to-back wins over Lehigh (91-73) and Mississippi State (63-62 ).

The team dropped their last to RV/RV UCLA, whom they defeated to win the 2022 WNIT 65-72 in the first round of Battle4Atlantis.

Myah Selland and Haleigh Timmer lead the team with an average of 16.5 and 10.5 points respectively. Both have scored double digits in three out of four competitions this season. Selland also takes the team off the boards with 6.5 rebounds per game.

next up

Rutgers will play its third and final Battle4Atlantis game on Monday, November 21 at either 5:00 p.m. or 7:30 p.m


Follow Rutgers Women’s Basketball on Twitter and Instagram (@RutgersWBB) for the latest news and updates. The team is also on Facebook (www.facebook.com/RutgersWBB). For all the latest Rutgers Athletics news, follow us on Twitter(@RUAthletics), Instagram (@RUAthletics) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/RutgersAthletics). For more updates, please download the Gameday app.