The UAA basketball teams are back in town Thursday night, and both have played enough road games since last playing in Anchorage that a catching-up-with the Seawolves guide seems in order.
After three straight road games, the men return to the Alaska Airlines Center to face the Nanooks of UAF at 7:30 p.m., a Great Northwest Athletic Conference rivalry game that seldom fails to entertain.
Scorekeepers are sure to be tested by this one — UAA (18-8 overall, 11-4 GNAC,) ranks 39th in scoring nationally with 84.9 points per game and UAF (16-6, 10-4) ranks 46th with 84.2. When the teams met in Fairbanks last month, UAA triumphed 100-91 in overtime.
The women are back home after four straight road games — and they are back on top of the Division II basketball rankings heading into Thursday's 5:15 p.m. game against Northwest Nazarene (8-12, 6-8).
The Seawolves (26-1,13-1) are ranked No. 1 in the nation for the second time this season by USA Today. After ascending to the top spot on Jan. 19, they slipped to No. 2 two weeks later, but they regained the No. 1 position this week.
A number of Seawolves ?— men and women — rank among the nation's top individual statistical leaders. And UAA is near the top — and in a couple of instances, at the top — in a handful of Division II team stats too.
Rankings of note:
Jenna Buchanan, 5-8 senior guard — 3rd in 3-pointers made with 85 (in 27 games); 9th in 3-point shooting percentage (47.2); 12th in 3-pointers per game with 3.15.
Megan Mullings, 6-0 senior forward — 4th in field goal percentage (62.5); 19th in field goals made with 160 (in 26 games); 45th in free throws made with 93; 46th in blocks with 39.
Kiki Robertson, 5-5 junior guard — 8th in assists with 132 (in 27 games); 10th in steals with 64; 10th in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.64); 35th in assists per game with 4.9.
Adriana Dent, 5-7 senior guard — 43rd in steals with 54 (in 25 games).
As a team, UAA leads the nation in margin of victory. The Seawolves are winning by an average of 29.9 points per game.
They rank fifth in scoring defense (52.9 points per game) and seventh in scoring (82.9 points per game).
Given those team rankings, you may have expected to see more UAA women among the national statistical leaders. But UAA's depth means all but three players are playing less than 20 minutes a game. And the exceptions aren't averaging anywhere near a full 40 minutes per game — Buchanan averages 25.4 minutes, senior guard Jessica Madison averages 23.3 and Mullings averages 21.3.
Suki Wiggs, a 6-foot-4 junior guard — 1st in total points with 621 (in 26 games); 3rd in free throws made with 195; 7th in points per game with 23.9; 13th in field goals made with 188.
Corey Hammell, 6-6 junior forward — 3rd in offensive rebounds per game with 4.31; 4th in total rebounds with 256 (in 26 games); 9th in free throws made with 153; 11th in double-doubles with 11; 19th in rebounds per game with 9.8.
As a team, UAA leads the nation in free throws with 578. is second in free throw percentage at 80.3 and third in free throw attempts (720).
A big part of UAA's success at the foul line is Brian McGill, a 6-2 senior guard who doesn't show up in the national rankings because he missed the first half the season — players must play in 75 percent of their team's games in order to make the national rankings.
But McGill is one of the best free-throw shooters out there. He has made 33 straight, a streak that included a 15-of-15 effort in a win over Simon Fraser last week. In the win over UAF last month, he was 16 of 16.
In 13 games he is 72 of 76 at the foul line for a 94.7 percentage. The Division II leader is shooting 96.4 percent.
Into the record books
Suki Wiggs and Jenna Buchanan are making school history every time they score a point.
Wiggs is such a prolific scorer that he has already cracked UAA's top 10 single-season scoring list with five games left in the regular season.
With 27 points in Saturday's loss to Montana State-Billings, he grabbed the No. 8 spot on the list, passing Taylor Rohde (595 points in 2011-12) .
He's easily on pace to finish second on the all-time list.
Men's single-season scoring leaders
1, Jesse Jackson (1986-87) 813
2. Jason Kaiser (1993-94) 695
3. Jason Kaiser (1994-95) 668
4. Jesse Jackson (1985-86) 658
5. Todd Fisher (1989-90) 654
5. Kemmy Burgess (2005-06) 654
7. Carl Arts (2007-08) 646
8. Suki Wiggs (2015-16) 621
9. Taylor Rohde (2011-12) 595
10. Jeff Martin (1983-84) 591
Buchanan already owns school records for career 3-pointers (216) and the most consecutive games with a 3-pointer (31 and counting). With 1,152 career points, she ranks ninth on UAA's all-time scoring list, with eighth place 10 points away.
Women's career scoring leaders
1. Robin Graul (1985-89) 2,237
2. Wendy Sturgis (1988-92) 1,767
3. Rebecca Kielpinski (2005-09) 1,752
4. Heidi Alderman (1992-96) 1,634
5. Allegra Stoetzel (1992-96) 1,610
6. Cheryl Bishop (1982-87) 1,592
7. Hanna Johansson (2008-12) 1,393
8. Jessica Madison (2012- ) 1,189
9. Jenna Buchanan (2012- ) 1,166
10. Eva Robinson (1979-81) 1,162
Correction: An earlier version of this story included an out-of-date list of women's career scoring leaders.