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Big Sky Tournament Central
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Sacramento State complete game notes (29 pages) - pdf


• Sacramento State's appearance in this year's Big Sky Conference Tournament will be the team's fifth straight and ninth since joining the league in 1996.
• Prior to two years ago, only the top six or seven teams qualified for the league's postseason event. This season marks the third year in a row the tournament will be played at a neutral floor at the Reno Events Center.
• All 12 Big Sky teams qualify for the league's postseason event and the Hornets are the No. 11 seed after finishing the regular season 7-24 overall and 4-14 in the Big Sky. The injury-plagued Hornets will play No. 6 seed Portland State (19-12, 9-9) on Tuesday at 8:05 p.m. with the winner taking on No. 3 Eastern Washington (18-13, 13-5) on Thursday at 8:05 p.m.
• The Hornets snapped a nine-game losing streak by winning the regular season finale Saturday night at home vs. Northern Colorado, 88-77.
• Since joining the Big Sky in 1996-97, the Hornets have reached the Big Sky Tournament eight times previously, and that happened four straight years from 2002-03 through the 2005-06 seasons, and four straight years from 2013-pres.
• Each of the last three seasons, Sacramento State has gone 1-1 at the Big Sky Tournament. That included last year's first round win over Idaho State before falling in the quarters to Eastern Washington. In 2016, the Hornets posted a first round win over Montana State before falling in the quarterfinals to Montana. In 2015, in Missoula, Sacramento State defeated Portland State in the quarters before losing to eventual champion Eastern Washington in the semis.
• Sacramento State is 5-8 all-time in tournament play, including semifinal appearances in 2003, 2006 and 2015. The Hornets hosted quarterfinal games in 2004 and 2005, and lost to Weber State by six points or less both times. The Hornets have never reached the championship game.
• In Big Sky Tourney play, the Hornets are 0-2 at home, 2-2 on the road, and 3-4 at neutral.


• Sacramento State swept the season series against Portland State this year, as two of the Hornets' four conference wins have come against the Vikings.
• The Hornets defeated the Vikings in the Big Sky opener at home (80-75) on Dec. 30 before winning on the road in Portland (71-61) on Jan. 27.
• One big reason for Sacramento State's success is the Hornets have found a way to slow down PSU's high-powered offense (86.8 ppg). The Hornets have limited the Vikings to just 68.0 points per game. Portland State has been limited to 75 points or less just seven times this year, and Sacramento State has accounted for two of those outcomes.
• The Hornets are shooting a very proficient .550 (55-100) from the floor vs. the Vikings, including Justin Strings (24.5 ppg) who is shooting a ridiculous .769 (20-26) from the field. It was Strings that connected on 16 consecutive field goal attempts in a career-high 34-point game at home in which he finished 16-of-18 from the floor.
• Sacramento State is 18-29 all-time against Portland State, but has won three straight meetings between the two teams.
• The Hornets and Vikings, who both joined the Big Sky in 1996-97, have met just once on a neutral floor. That came in a 70-60 Sacramento State win in a Big Sky Tournament quarterfinal matchup in Missoula in 2015.
• Overall, the Hornets have won eight of the last 12 meetings between the two teams.


• This year's tournament features all 12 teams playing in a four-day, single-elimination event that takes place at the Reno Events Center from March 6-10. There will be no games on March 7.
• On Tuesday, there will be four first-round games, including No. 8 North Dakota vs. No. 9 Montana State at 12:05 p.m., No. 5 Northern Colorado vs. No. 12 Northern Arizona at 2:35 p.m., and No. 7 Idaho State vs. No. 10 Southern Utah at 5:35 p.m.
• The top four seeds receive a first round bye and will play in Thursday's quarterfinals when No. 1 Montana takes on the winner of North Dakota/Montana State at 12:05 p.m., No. 4 Weber State faces the winner of Northern Colorado/Northern Arizona at 2:35 p.m., No. 2 Idaho takes on the winner of Idaho State/Southern Utah at 5:35 p.m., and No. 3 Eastern Washington will face the Hornets/Vikings winner at 8:05 p.m.
• The semifinals take place on Friday at 5:35 and 8:05 p.m., and the championship is Saturday at 5:05 p.m. That game will be broadcast live on ESPNU.


• Every game of this year's Big Sky Tournament, except the championship game, will be available for free on www.WatchBigSky.com and Pluto TV channel 231. Press conferences from all of the games will be available for fans as well. Watch Big Sky can be accessed on your computer or mobile device at www.watchbigsky.com.
• Eleven Sports will also televise the quarterfinal and semifinal matchups.
• Saturday's championship game will be televised live on ESPNU beginning at 5:05 p.m. The championship game will not be available on Watch Big Sky, but is on ESPN3.
• Every Sacramento State game will be aired live on the radio at KTKZ 1380 AM and www.hornetsports.com with 21st-year play-by-play announcer Steve McElroy on the call.
• Live stats for every game of the tournament will be available via bigskystats.com.
• All multimedia links can be found on the men's hoops schedule at hornetsports.com.

For Sacramento State's complete set of game notes, please click here.