WOMEN'S BASKETBALL SET TO HOST NORTHERN COLORADO IN LONE TIP OF THE WEEK
Scouting Northern Colorado
Northern Colorado comes into the Hornets Nest looking to bounce back from a 73-69 road loss at the hands of the Montana Lady Griz. Prior to that contest, the Bears had ran off four straight conference victories, including an upset of conference co-leader Portland State.
Against the Lady Griz, the Bears were led by Jamie Schroeder, who scored 22 points and grabbed eight rebounds, while Kate Kevorken scored 18 points off the bench. The duo combined to shoot 7-of-15 from beyond the three-point arc, while connecting on a perfect 9-of-9 from the foul line, in the defeat.
Two evenings prior, in a victory against Montana State, it was the inside game of Danielle Hagen that paced the Bears, as she grabbed 29 points and added eight rebounds. During conference play, Schroeder leads the team in scoring, averaging 19.7 points per game, and leads the Big Sky in free throw shooting, connecting on 29-of-30 (96.7 percent). Danielle Hagen ranks second on the team during Big Sky play, averaging 16.8 points per game, along with 8.8 rebounds per game, while off the bench Kate Kevorken is also in double figures, boasting an average of 10.3 points per game.
The Bears have played since early December without leading scorer Whitley Cox, who averaged 20.1 points per game during her eight games played. Over all 19 games, Schroeder (11.8), Hagen (11.4), Kevorken (10.3) and Courtney Stoermer (10.2) are each averaging double-figures.
The Hornets split the series with the Bears last season, with each team winning on their own floor. Last season marked the first time the two school’s competed on the hard wood.
Previous Game: Idaho State 90, Sacramento State 73
The Sacramento State women’s basketball team dropped a 90-73 decision to the Idaho State Bengals in Big Sky Conference play on Sat. Jan 26 at the Hornets Nest.
As evidenced by the score, the Hornets and Bengals locked horns in an uptempo game that saw the two school’s combine for 23 makes from beyond the three-point arc. Idaho State started the game making their first four attempts from beyond the arc, taking a 16-13 lead with 14:58 remaining in the first stanza on the final three of that stretch sunk by Jenna Brown. That jumper started a 9-2 run to give the Bengals a seven point lead with 13:08 to play in the half.
In a game of runs, the Hornets struck next, going on a 9-4 run, capped by a layup from junior Becca Reams (Foresthill, Calif.), which pulled Sacramento State to within two at 24-22 with 11 minutes remaining. From there, the Bengals took their turn at a run, outscoring the Hornets 11-0 over the next 3:24 to take, at the time, their largest lead of the game at 35-22 with 7:36 remaining in the half. The Hornets then outscored Idaho State 20-12 over the remainder of the first half, to trail just five at 47-42 entering intermission.
Two players from each team cracked double-digits in the first stanza, with freshman Emily Christensen (El Dorado Hills, Calif.) leading the Hornet charge with 12 points, while junior Atty Boyer (Sacramento, Calif.) added 10. Idaho State was led by Andrea Lightfoot, who scored 17 first half points, including 3-of-5 shooting from downtown, while Natalie Doma scored 16 points on 8-of-12 shooting from the field.
The second half saw the Hornets and Idaho State claw back and forth over the first eight minutes, with Sacramento State cutting the Bengal lead to four on three separate occasions, but could not draw closer. After leading just 64-60 with 14:17 remaining, Idaho State embarked on a 10-0 run over the next 5:03 to put the Hornets away. The lead would grow to as large as 19 with 2:29 to play, before the final margin settled at 90-73 in favor of the visitors from Idaho State.
Idaho State, who shot 58.6 percent from the field (34-of-58) for the contest, was led by Doma, who scored 34 points, one shy of tying her career-high, and a team-high 9 rebounds, which marked just the third time this year she did not record a double-double. Lightfoot finished with 27 points and eight rebounds, while adding five assists in 39 minutes.
The Hornets were paced by Boyer, who finished with 15 points, while Christensen and sophomore Charday Hunt (Oregon City, Ore.) each added 12 apiece. Christensen, whose previous career-high in rebounding stood at four, collected her first career double-double with a game-high 11 rebounds. Reams and freshman Sami Field-Polisso (Mountain View, Calif.) each added nine points, while freshman Jasmine Cannady (Sacramento, Calif.) added seven points. Field-Polisso dished out a career-high seven assists, while turning the ball over just twice in 39 minutes of work.
The game was witnessed by a record crowd of 541 fans on “Pack the House Day” while over 100 kids aged 13 and under stayed after the game for a free clinic by the Hornet coaching staff and players, sponsored by Pepsi.
Previous Game: Weber State 77, Sacramento State 46
The Sacramento State women’s basketball team fell in conference action to the Weber State Wildcats, 77-46, on Thu. Jan 24 at the Hornets Nest.
Weber State came out of the gates on fire from beyond the three-point arc, making four of their first five attempts from the field, all from three, to take an early 12-1 lead. The Hornets would cut the lead to eight at 14-6 with 15:09 remaining in the half, but it would mark the closest they would get the remainder of the game.
The three-point barrage was not done, however, as the Wildcats made five more in the half, finishing the first stanza 9-of-18 from three, in route to a 42-21 halftime advantage. For the Hornets, freshman Emily Christensen (El Dorado Hills, Calif.) led the way at intermission with six points on 2-of-2 shooting from beyond the arc, while Weber State had three players in double figures at the break, Sara Tuomi (13), Caitlin Anderson (12), and Ali Thorderson (10).
The second half saw Weber State continue to out muscle the Hornets, as they extended the lead to as many as 34 in the half before recording the 31 point victory. In the second half, the Wildcats held the Hornets to 7-of-32 shooting (21.9 percent), while extending their rebounding advantage to plus eight.
Sophomore Darla Bishop (Fairfield, Calif.) scored six of her career-high nine points in the second half, while collecting a career-high six rebounds. Fellow sophomore Charday Hunt (Oregon City, Ore.) also added nine points, which included a 7-of-10 performance from the foul line, while Christensen finished with eight points and three rebounds, all on the offensive end, in a team-high 26 minutes off the bench.
Weber State was led by a 25 point, 10 rebound performance by Toumi, while Thorderson also recorded a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds off the bench.
Big Sky Standings Update
Portland State and Montana are tied atop the Big Sky Conference standings, with both teams registering 15-4 overall records that include 5-1 marks in conference play. The two teams will meet for the first time this season, as the Lady Griz will host the Vikings on Thursday night.
Hornets’ Schedule Standing Up as one of the Big Sky’s Toughest
According to three services that compute strength of schedule (collegerpi.com, realtimerpi.com and the Sagarin Ratings), the Hornets have played the second toughest schedule of any Big Sky team, with Idaho State having the top schedule in the conference, as ranked by the rpi services, while Montana State holds the top spot according to the Sagarin Ratings.
Christensen “Posts” Her First Career Double-Double
Freshman Emily Christensen came into the contest against Idaho State averaging 2.1 rebounds per game, with her career-high standing at four boards. Christensen, who has now added post play to her repertoire due to injuries up front, collected 11 boards against the Bengals, including four on the offensive end, to go along with 12 points. The double-double marked the first of her young career, while the 12 points, all of which came in the first half, were her second highest scoring output of the season.
Koshiyama-Diaz Knocking Down Three’s From Off the Bench
Freshman Tika Koshiyama-Diaz connected on a three-pointer against Idaho State, and has now hit a three in six of her last eight appearances. Koshiyama-Diaz, who has played an average of 16.4 minutes per game in the Hornets last five outings, is 10-18 from downtown this season (55.6 percent).
Newcomers Picking Up Scoring Load
So far this season, the Hornets six newcomers have combined to produce 50.7 percent of the teams scoring output. Leading the charge are sophomore Charday Hunt, who is averaging 8.7 points per game. Freshmen Sami Field-Polisso (8.2) Emily Christensen (5.5), and Jasmine Cannady (4.0) have each seen the floor in all 19 contests, while freshman Tika Koshiyama-Diaz (3.1) has played in 14 contests. Sophomore Darla Bishop (2.4) has seen the floor in nine games this season.
Boyer Knockin’ Home the Freebies
Junior F/C Atty Boyer, the team’s leading scoring on the season, has ran off an impressive streak from the foul line, making 32 of her last 39 attempts from the charity stripe (82.1 percent). Boyer had made 14 in a row before missing a shot from the foul line late in the first half against Gonzaga on Dec. 8.
Hunt Comes Through in Clutch for Hornets
Sophomore Charday Hunt knocked down an 18-footer with three seconds remaining, her only field goal of the game, to give the Hornets an 87-85 victory over Pacific on Dec. 11. Hunt, who had seen her only other field goal attempt of the game blocked, became open after a beautiful draw-and-kick from junior Kelly Hughes, who drove the baseline and sucked in defenders, allowing Hunt to calmly sink the shot. Hunt has also stepped up her scoring average in conference play, as she is averaging a team best 9.3 points per game in the Big Sky.
19 Games - Seven Lineups
Head coach Dan Muscatell has produced seven different starting lineups in the Hornets 19 contests this season. After beginning the season with different lineups in four straight games, the Hornets used the same lineup for the next nine matchups, before changing the lineup once again. The Hornets starting lineups used this season are listed below:
G G C F F Opponent W-L (Lineup)
Field-Polisso Cannady Reams Willard Hunt at UC Davis 0-1 (0-1)
Field-Polisso Davis Boyer Reams Hunt at Drake 0-2 (0-1)
Field-Polisso Hughes Boyer Edwards Hunt at Iowa State 0-3 (0-1)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Edwards Hunt at UCI 0-4 (0-1)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Edwards Hunt San Jose State 1-4 (1-1)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Edwards Hunt Santa Clara 1-5 (1-2)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Edwards Hunt at San Francisco 1-6 (1-3)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Edwards Hunt Gonzaga 1-7 (1-4)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Edwards Hunt Pacific 2-7 (2-4)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Edwards Hunt at Boise State 2-8 (2-5)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Edwards Hunt at Fresno State 2-9 (2-6)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Edwards Hunt Portland 2-10 (2-7)
Field-Polisso Cannady Reams Edwards Hunt Portland State 2-11 (0-1)
Field-Polisso Cannady Reams Edwards Hunt Eastern Wash. 3-11 (1-1)
Field-Polisso Koshiyama-Diaz Reams Edwards Hunt Montana State 3-12 (0-1)
Field-Polisso Cannady Reams Edwards Hunt Montana 3-13 (1-2)
Field-Polisso Cannady Reams Edwards Hunt Northern Arizona 4-13 (2-2)
Field-Polisso Cannady Reams Edwards Hunt Weber State 4-14 (2-3)
Field-Polisso Cannady Boyer Reams Hunt Idaho State 4-15 (0-1)
Head Coach Dan Muscatell
Entering his fifth season with Sacramento State, head coach Dan Muscatell is looking to take a young squad to the Big Sky Conference postseason tournament for the second time in four seasons.
Last year, the Hornets saw six newcomers take the floor, and with six new players entering for the 2007-08 season, Sacramento State will be a youthful bunch when it takes the floor.
The 2005-06 season saw Muscatell lead the team to a 9-17 overall record. It was the best finish of any Hornet team in 10 seasons. During the year, the Hornets posted a five-game winning streak on their home floor and upended eventual Big Sky Tournament champion Northern Arizona, 61-59, in their final home game of the year.
It was less than three years ago during the 2004-05 season, when the program began to break long-standing streaks and advanced to the Big Sky Conference postseason tournament for the first time since 1997, establishing itself as one of the most competitive teams in the league.
Under Muscatell, Sacramento State finished 8-20 in 2005. The team’s conference record of 4-10 was also the best mark since 2000, as the Hornets overcame a previous inability to win on the road, picking up three victories away from home and establishing the team’s best road record since 1993-94. Two of those victories came against Big Sky opposition, another program first. And for just the second time since Sacramento State joined the Big Sky in 1996, the Hornets swept a conference foe, defeating Eastern Washington in both of their meetings.
In addition, the records are not only breaking on the court. During Muscatell’s last four years with the program, 17 of his players have received Big Sky all-academic honors.
Of the 15 players who have reached senior eligibility under Muscatell’s regime, 14 have graduated as of May, 2007.
He and his wife, Terri, celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary this year, and have three children: Keely (22), Jessica (19) and Drew (17).