CAUSEWAY CLASH ON FRIDAY IN THE NEST AS WOMEN'S HOOPS HOSTS UC DAVIS

CAUSEWAY CLASH ON FRIDAY IN THE NEST AS WOMEN'S HOOPS HOSTS UC DAVIS

Women's Basketball Game Notes, 12/6 - PDF

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The Sacramento State women's basketball team will play their third game in less than a week on Friday, Dec. 7 as they host their Causeway rivals, the UC Davis Aggies in the Nest. Tip off on Friday is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. 

How To Watch

Hornets vs. UC Davis
Friday, Dec. 7 // 7:05 PM PT
The Nest // Sacramento, Calif.
Watch: Pluto.TV (ch. 233)
Live Stats: HornetStats.com
Twitter: @SacStateWBB

All home Sacramento State basketball games and all Big Sky Conference games will be streamed live online at WatchBigSky.com and on Pluto.TV, channel 233. 

All streaming links, news, and updates can also be found by visiting the 2018 Women's Basketball Schedule online at HornetSports.com.

Opening Tip

  • Sacramento State dropped their first home game of the year on Wednesday, falling 86-75 to the visiting San Francisco Dons. The Hornets made just 3 of 30 three-point attempts in the loss.
  • Junior forward Kennedy Nicholas had a career-performance on Wednesday, scoring a career-high 30 points while matching her career-best with 18 rebounds. 10 of those 18 rebounds came off the offensive glass and Nicholas is now averaging an NCAA-best 7.4 offensive boards per game. 
  • The Hornets took a season-low 77 shots on Wednesday. The Hornets are 1-1 when taking fewer than 90 shots and 2-1 when taking 90+ shots. They took a season-high 101 shots in a 109-107 win against Illinois at Cal Poly's ShareSLO Tournament. 
  • Sacramento State overcame a 21-point deficit on Wednesday to take a brief one-point lead on Wednesday. The 21-point deficit was the largest of the season for the Hornets.
  • UC Davis comes into Friday night's matchup with a 3-5 overall record. The Aggies are averaging just 63.6 points per game on 38.9% shooting. The defending Big West regular season champions are 1-2 against Big Sky teams this season (W vs. Southern Utah, L at Portland State, at Montana).  

By The Numbers

7.4: Offensive rebounds per game for junior forward Kennedy Nicholas, most in NCAA Div. I women's basketball.

91.0: Points per game averaged by Sacramento State, third most in the NCAA and most in the Big Sky Conference. 

3: Categories in which Sacramento State leads the Big Sky: Rebounds, Offensive Rebounds, and Scoring.

About Last Game

Sacramento State rallied furiously to overcome a 21-point second deficit on Wednesday, taking back the lead from San Francisco in the fourth quarter. Despite the comeback, the Hornets were unable to keep control of the game and fell late, 86-75, to the Dons. 

Kennedy Nicholas had a career-performance for the Hornets, scoring 30 points and pulling in 18 rebounds. She was 10-for-14 from the floor and 10-of-15 from the free throw line in the effort. 

Against UC Davis

Friday's matchup against the UC Davis Aggies is the 16th in the Division I era of Sacramento State Women's Basketball (1991-current) and the 59th matchup dating back to the 1971-72 season. 

In the Div. I era, the Aggies hold an 11-5 advantage over Sacramento State while the all-time matchup is even at 29-29, according to UC Davis records. 

In the Nest, the Hornets are 3-5 against the Aggies since 1991, their last home win against the causeway rivals coming during the 2012-13 season. 

Last year, Sacramento State fell on the road to UC Davis, 79-72. Hannah Friend paced the Hornets offense in that game, scoring a team-high 25 points. 

Scouting the Aggies

  • The UC Davis Aggies come into Friday night's Causeway matchup with a 3-5 overall record and a 1-4 mark on the road this season.
  • Last year, the Aggies finished 28-7 overall, including 14-2 in the Big West to clinch the conference's regular season championship.
  • The #1 seed in the Big West Tournament, the Aggies beat UC Riverside before falling to CSUN in the tournament final.
  • After winning three straight games to open the WNIT, the Aggies lost to eventual WNIT-champs Indiana, 81-66 in the semifinals. 
  • UC Davis enters Friday night's game averaging 63.6 points per game on 38.9% shooting. They scored a season-high 80 points in an 83-80 loss vs. Pacific at home.  
  • The Aggies are 1-2 against Big Sky teams this season (W vs. Southern Utah, L at Portland State, at Montana). 
  • Senior Morgan Bertsch leads the Aggies with 22.0 points per game and is second with 5.3 rebounds per game. 

Homestand Finale

Friday's game is the end of a three-game homestand for Sacramento State, which began just under a week ago on Saturday, Dec. 1 vs. Antelope Valley. The three-game stretch at home is one of two for the Hornets this season, who also play three straight at home from Feb. 23 - Mar. 2 later this year.  

Off On The Right Foot

Sacramento State's 3-2 record through the season's first five games is their best record through five games since the 2013-14 season. That year, the Hornets were 4-1 after five games before improving to 11-1, their best start to a season in program history.

Defend the Nest

Dating back to last season, Sacramento State has won five of their last seven games in the Nest. Among those wins are a 15-point victory over Montana and an 11-point victory over Montana State.

The Nation's Best Rebounders

Sacramento State leads the nation in rebounding so far this season. The team's 50.2 total rebounds per game and 23.0 offensive rebounds per game are both the best marks in the NCAA.

The Hornets recorded a program-best 66 rebounds in their 86-80 win over Antelope Valley and a season-high 27 offensive boards in a 109-107 win over the Big Ten's Illinois.

Kennedy Nicholas leads the Hornets and the nation with 14.6 rebounds and 7.4 offensive rebounds per game. Hannah Friend is second, averaging 8.8 rebounds per game. Both Friend and senior Raegen Rohn are collecting 2.6 offensive boards per game.

A High-Scoring Affair

The Hornets rank third in the nation in scoring offense, averaging 91.0 points per game through five games this season. They trail only Oregon (94.7) and Mississippi State (93.8).

Sacramento State's record for scoring in a single season is 87.5, set during the 2015-16 season under head coach Bunky Harkleroad.

From Beyond the Arc

In addition to rebounds and scoring offense, Sacramento State also ranks among the Top 10 for three-point field goals made per game. The Hornets' 10.2 threes per game ranks ninth in the nation. 

Hannah Friend and Tiara Scott are fourth in the Big Sky, averaging 2.60 made threes per game. 

Nicholas Dominating Under the Basket

Junior forward Kennedy Nicholas continued her torrid start to the season in Wednesday's game against San Francisco, setting a career-mark with 30 points while pulling in a career-best 18 rebounds for the second straight game. 

Nicholas is averaging well over a double-double this season, scoring 17.8 points per game to go with 14.6 rebounds. Both are career-bests. 

Her 14.6 rebounds per game is the most in the NCAA, as are her 7.4 offensive rebounds per game. 

The Big Three in the Big Sky

Sacramento State's "Big Three" - last year's returning starters - Hannah Friend, Kennedy Nicholas, and Tiara Scott all rank among the Top 10 in scoring in the Big Sky Conference. 

Friend is second in the Big Sky and 12th in the nation, averaging 22.6 points per game. 

Nicholas ranks fourth in the conference with 17.8 points per game. 

Scott, averaging 15.4 points per game, is ninth. 

Grand Theft Basketball

Three Hornets - Hannah Friend, Summer Menke, and Tiara Scott - are among the Top 10 in the Big Sky in steals per game. 

Friend leads the team and is fifth in the conference with 2.20 steals per game. She had a season-high three in the team's last game against San Francisco. 

Scott and Menke are both tied for sixth in the Big Sky with 2.00 steals per game. Scott had a season-high five against Cal Poly while Menke has recorded three steals on two separate occasions.

Double-Figure Streaks

Hannah Friend scored 13 points in Wednesday's loss to San Francisco, making it the fifth straight game she has scored in double figures. 

For Kennedy Nicholas, her 30 points against San Francisco extended her double-figure scoring streak to four games. 

Double-Double Streaks

In addition to a four-game double-figure scoring streak, junior Kennedy Nicholas has recorded a double-double in three straight games. During that stretch, she is averaging 20.3 points and 17.0 rebounds (9.3 offensive rebounds).

Abney's Breakout Performance

True freshman Sarah Abney had a breakout performance in Sacramento State's win over Antelope Valley, setting new career highs in both points (10) and rebounds (seven). The guard from Las Cruces, N.M. played a season-high 16 minutes in the 86-80 win.

Beating the Big Ten

Sacramento State picked up its first ever win against a Big Ten opponent earlier this season, defeating Illinois, 109-107 at the ShareSLO Holiday Classic Tournament over Thanksgiving. All-time, the Hornets are 1-2 against Big Ten programs.

Starting Streak

Hannah Friend and Tiara Scott come into Friday night's games having started 18 and 16 games straight, respectively, dating back to last season. Last year, the Hornets used just nine different starting lineups, the fewest in a single season under coach Harkleroad.

A Refreshed Roster

The Sacramento State women's basketball team opens the 2018-19 season with 17 active players on the roster, its most ever under head coach Bunky Harkleroad (sixth season). Last season, Sacramento State had 11 active players (plus two redshirts). Because of injuries, the Hornets spent much of last season with just eight available players.

International Influence

Three of Sacramento State's newcomers are from outside the United States. Claire Bady, a transfer from Eastern Florida, is originally from France, while Emily Enochs comes to Sacramento State from Germany. Julynne de Silva Sa, a transfer from Northwest College, is from Brazil.

Big Sky Gets a Little Smaller

With the departure of North Dakota from the Big Sky, the Big Sky Conference now includes 11 women's basketball programs. While the total number of conference games remains the same as last season (20), those 20 games now features a home-and-home with each of the other 10 teams. 

Big Sky Preseason Poll

Sacramento State was selected ninth in both the Big Sky's Coaches Preseason Poll and Media Preseason Poll. The Hornets received 28 total points in the Coaches Poll, 10 behind Weber State for the ninth spot. In the Media Poll, Sacramento State received 57 points, a full 43 back of Weber State.  

- HornetSports.com -