Lindsay Whalen's first game as head coach of the Gophers women's basketball team was picture perfect in front of a record-breaking crowd at Williams Arena.
A program record 14,625 fans packed The Barn for Whalen's debut and were rewarded with a sound victory by the Gophers, defeating New Hampshire 70-47.
The record crowd broke the old record of 14,363 set in 2004, when Whalen was a senior point guard en route to leading the Gophers to the Final Four.
"Hey, that was pretty fun," Whalen said to the crowd after the game. "As a player it was the greatest honor to play in front of crowds like this a lot when I played here. I'm just thankful that our players got to experience this tonight."
In her postgame press conference, Whalen credited senior leaders Annalese Lamke and Kenisha Bell: "These two here, our leaders, coming out and doing what they needed to do with a sellout crowd? With some younger players? They led the way. Give them credit."
Lamke scored 18 points all of last season but led the Gophers Friday night with 21 points while Bell was the floor general with 17 points, eight assists and five rebounds.
Taiye Bello also had a big game with 14 points, 14 rebounds and five blocks.