Published Thursday, January 24, 2013 AT 6:53 PM / Updated at 6:54 PM
Women’s basketball: Northern Iowa at Creighton
Steven Pivovar Omaha World-Herald

When: Friday 7:05 p.m.
Where: D.J. Sokol Arena
TV: Fox Sports Midwest
Radio: None

Northern Iowa (8-9, 3-2)
F Hannah Schonhardt, 6-2, Fr., 5.0
F Jen Keitel, 6-3, Fr., 8.4
G Jacqui Kalin, 5-8, Sr., 18.4
G Brooke Brown, 5-8, So., 5.6
G Brittni Donaldson, 5-7, So., 7.7

Creighton (13-4, 5-1)
F Sarah Nelson, 6-0, Jr., 12.5
C Alyssa Kamphaus, 6-3, Jr., 4.8
G Carli Tritz, 5-10, Jr., 8.4
G McKenzie Fujan, 5-11, Jr., 8.1
G Ally Jensen, 5-6, Sr., 8.1

Creighton scouting report: The game matches the Bluejays against a team that has shown the same propensity for shooting 3-point shots and defending the arc. Creighton ranks first in the Missouri Valley in 3-point baskets per game (9.3), while Northern Iowa is second (8.2). The teams are tied for second in 3-point field-goal defense, allowing opponents to shoot 28.1 percent from beyond the arc. Sarah Nelson and Alyssa Kamphaus need to use their experience inside as they’ll be operating against a young Northern Iowa front line. Nelson continues to fashion a season that will get her player-of-the-year consideration as she leads the conference in field-goal shooting and ranks among the leaders in scoring, rebounding, assists and 3-point percentage. Carli Tritz continues to make the transition from go-to scorer to playmaker. The junior is second in the Valley in assists (4.1 per game).

Northern Iowa scouting report: If it’s a close game, the Bluejays will not want to foul Jacqui Kalin. The senior guard leads the Valley in free-throw percentage (.943) and has made more free throws (69) than all but two of the other players in the top 10 have attempted. Kalin, who missed last season with an injury after winning the player of the year award in 2011, also is the conference’s top scorer at 18.4 points per game. Kalin has scored 20 or more points in her last four games. In Kalin, Brooke Brown and Jess McDowell, Northern Iowa has three of the top six leaders in 3-point percentage. Rebounding has been a problem for the Panthers but they’re going up against a team that also has struggled in that aspect of the game. Creighton and Northern Iowa rank eighth and ninth in rebounding margin this season.

Opening tips: Creighton leads the series 33-16, has won the last three meetings and six of the last 10. … The Bluejays are one of 16 Division I women’s team to use the same starting lineup the entire season. … Tritz needs 42 points to become the 24th player in program history to score 1,000 points.

About Steven Pivovar

Steven Pivovar is a staff writer for The Omaha World-Herald and primarily covers Creighton athletics and the College World Series. You can follow Steven on Twitter (@PivOWH) or email him at spivovar@owh.com.