WOMEN’S BASKETBALL HOSTS WEBER STATE THURSDAY TO OPEN FINAL HOMESTAND
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Sacramento State women's basketball team (16-9, 8-8 Big Sky) opens its final home stand of the season hosting Weber State (6-19, 2-14 Big Sky) at 7 p.m. Thursday in The Nest. Sacramento State also hosts Idaho State (10-15, 8-8 Big Sky) in its home finale at 2 p.m. Saturday as the team looks for two critical wins to help solidify a postseason berth.
The Hornets will unveil new Adidas uniforms on Thursday, which will also be a whiteout game. The first 100 fans attending the game will receive free white out t-shirts while the first 50 Green Army members will get free food from Pete's Restaurant.
Sacramento State leads NCAA Div. I in three-point makes per game (12.5) and steals per game (13.8), is second in turnover margin (+9.44) and fourth in points per game (85.8)...The Hornets are 11-2 at home in The Nest this season, averaging 92.5 points per game, 13.9 three-pointers per game, and 15.8 steals per game with a +11.2 turnover margin...With 313 made 3-pointers this season the Hornets have already eclipsed their own program and Big Sky record (264) and are just 29 shy of the NCAA record (342)...Sacramento State is also just one 3-point attempt away from the NCAA single-season record (981) and its season average of 12.5 3-pointers is nearly two more than the NCAA record...The Hornets were held to a season-low 53 points in a loss at Idaho State Jan. 30 than came back two days later to score a school-record 111 points at Weber State.
All Big Sky games have a free live video stream available at WatchBigSky.com and the Watch Big Sky app. Thursday's game will also stream live on HornetSports.com/Radio with Brian Berger providing the play-by-play call. Live stats are available above and for more content and game updates like Sacramento State Athletics on facebook and follow @HornetSports and #BigSkyWBB on twitter.
The Nation's Best
Sacramento State leads all of NCAA Div. I (343 Teams) with 12.5 three-pointers made per game and 13.8 steals per game. The Hornets are averaging 2.5 more 3-pointers and 1.4 more steals than any other team in the nation. The squad also ranks second in the NCAA with a +9.44 turnover margin, is fourth with 85.8 points per game, and is 16th with 17.1 assists per game. Sacramento State leads the Big Sky in all of those categories as well as offensive rebounds (16.9 ORPG) and is second in assist-turnover ratio (1.25).
Home is Where the Wins Are
Sacramento State is 11-2 at home and 5-7 on the road this season, including a 6-2 home Big Sky mark and a 2-6 road Big Sky record. In 13 home games this season Sacramento State is averaging 92.5 points, 13.9 three-pointers, and 15.8 steals per game with a +11.2 turnover margin. On the road the Hornets average just 78.5 points, 11.0 three-pointers, and 11.5 steals per game with a +7.6 turnover margin. The team has scored less than 70 points four times on the road but has not scored less than 73 points in a game at home.
Big Sky Breakdown
Sacramento State enters the week in a three-way tie with Idaho State and Montana State for fifth place in the Big Sky with two weeks remaining in the regular season. The top seven teams in the final conference standings will advance to the Big Sky Tournament, so the Hornets, ISU, and, MSU are all currently in qualifying positions. North Dakota is the only team to clinch a berth as of yet and has a 1.5 game lead over Montana and Southern Utah for first place. The regular season champion will host the tournament and get a bye into the semifinal round. At 8-9, eighth-place Northern Colorado is the biggest threat to move up to a qualifying position while Northern Arizona sits at 6-10.
Scouting Weber State (6-19, 2-14 Big Sky)
Weber State ended a 51-game Big Sky losing streak with an 84-71 home win over Idaho State Feb. 17 and followed with a 56-54 upset victory over Montana last Thursday. The Wildcats are still on a 35-game losing streak in road Big Sky games, with their last road conference win Feb. 11, 2010 at Northern Arizona, and have lost 53 consecutive road games overall. Weber State ranks second in the Big Sky, behind the Hornets, with 9.6 steals per game led by individual steals leader Regina Okoye, who ranks 17th in the NCAA with 2.79 steals per game. The Hornets and Wildcats combined for a Big Sky-record 215 points in Sacramento State's 111-104 win in Ogden Feb. 1, the sixth consecutive win in the series for the Hornets.
Scouting Idaho State (10-15, 8-8 Big Sky)
The Bengals, Hornets, and Montana State each have 8-8 Big Sky records entering play this weekend. Idaho State held Sacramento State to a season-low 53 points in Pocatello Jan. 30 in a 62-53 win in which the Hornets shot just 5-of-32 (15.6%) in the second half. The Bengals have the fourth-best defense in the Big Sky, allowing just 66.6 points per game, but are last in scoring with just 62.8 points per game. The Bengals have lost four of their last five games and are just 4-11 on the road this season. Idaho State will play at Northern Arizona Thursday night before coming to Sacramento.
Historic three-point shooting has been the Hornets calling card, as the team has led the nation in 3-pointers made per game throughout the 2013-14 season. The squad has thrice broken the single-game program record in 3-point makes and came within one of the NCAA record against UC Irvine, re-breaking the Big Sky record with 21 3-point makes and 55 3-point attempts. With 313 total 3-pointers made the team has already broken the single-season program and Big Sky records for made threes in a season and is approaching the NCAA record of 342, set last season by Florida Gulf Coast.
Sacramento State has had eight players make double-digit threes, including seven with 20 or more three-point makes this season. The Hornets have scored 939 of 2,145 total points this season on 3-pointers, as 313 made long balls have accounted for 43.8% of the team's points while just 37.2% of the total points have come on 2-point shots. The NCAA record for 3-pointers made per game in a season is 10.7 and Sacramento State is currently averaging 12.5, while the Hornets need just one more 3-point attempt to equal the single-season NCAA record of 981 set by Morehead State in 2010.
Senior guard Alle Moreno broke her third career program record Feb. 13 against Eastern Washington as she surpassed Kylie Kuhns as Sacramento State's all-time leader in career steals. She previously became Sacramento State's all-time leading 3-point shooter on Nov. 10 when she hit her fourth of six 3-point makes against San Diego State. Moreno surpassed the previous career 3-point record of 176 set by former Hornet Kim Sheehy, who concluded her collegiate career in 2007, while she had already established a new record for career 3-point attempts during her junior year. With 226 career 3-pointers to date Moreno is now tied for 5th in Big Sky history. Moreno also became the 11th player in program history to crack the 1,000-point plateau this season when she scored her fourth of 22 points on Dec. 14 against UC Irvine. She is also the Big Sky record holder for career 3-point attempts.
Hornet Freshmen Hallie Gennett and Gigi Hascheff have been major contributors to the Hornets throughout the 2013-14 season. Gennett ranks 31st in the NCAA and leads the Big Sky with 2.88 three-point makes per game, including seven games making five or more 3-point shots. She made a Big Sky season-high eight 3-point shots in her first collegiate game vs. Cal State Northridge. Of her 100 made field goals on the season, 72 have been 3-pointers, while 221 of her 273 field goal attempts (81%) have come from beyond the arc.
Hascheff is averaging 11.0 points per game this season and is shooting 74.7% from the free throw line. She has been especially superb in Big Sky play, leading the team with 12.3 points per game and shooting 40% from the field and 53-of-68 (80%) from the line. Hascheff is also third on the team with 2.7 assists per game and averages 1.2 steals per game. Over the last 12 games (11 starts) Hascheff is leading the team with 13.8 points per game and is second with 2.4 assists per game.