SINCE ITS FIRST VARSITY TEAM TOOK THE FLOOR OF MEMORIAL COLISEUM IN 1974, the Kentucky women's program hasn't come close to approximating the success of the men's team. These Wildcats won their only Southeastern Conference championship in 1982, and their only title in a national tournament came in the 1990 NWIT. � But now with new coach Matt Mitchell, a former UK assistant under Mickie DeMoss, and a new state-of-the-art practice facility in the $30 million Joe Craft Center, the Lady Kats have high hopes of raising a few banners of their own. "For us to have the facilities we do now," Mitchell says, "there's no reason why we can't be one of the premier programs in the nation."
NICHOLS RANKS second to Valerie Still in career points, and she is third in rebounds and blocks. She's also second alltime in steals and 10th in assists. On Valentine's Day in 1986 she had the only triple double in the program's history, hanging 18 points, 13 rebounds and 11 steals on Louisville.
THE VERSATILE Croley averaged 14.2 points and 6.4 rebounds as a Wildcat. She scored 40 against Morehead State in 1987, the third-highest single-game total in program history. ( Valerie Still has the top two.) During 1986-87 the 5'10" Croley had 32 points against Alabama and 30 against Florida one week apart.
STILL HOLDS the career records for points and rebounding for both women and men. The 6'1" Still led Kentucky to its highest national ranking (4th), in '83. She is the only female letter winner in any UK sport to have had her jersey retired and the only female inducted into the charter class of the UK Athletics Hall of Fame.