December 20, 2010

WBB Preview: San Francisco

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Northern Colorado Notes | San Francisco Notes

Closing Out
Northern Colorado will play at home for just the second time in December and is playing the next-to-last game in 2010 when it hosts San Francisco on Monday evening. The Bears are 1-3 during the 12th month and are 1-0 in the friendly confines of Butler-Hancock.

Last Time Out
DENVER, Colo. – Sophomore guard Victoria Timm continued to play well for Northern Colorado, but it was not enough as the Denver Pioneers out-scored the Bears 20-7 over the final 9:04 for the 56-45 victory in Magness Arena on Tuesday. Timm led the team with 14 points, tallied a career-best seven steals and added six rebounds. Fellow sophomore Lauren Oosdyke was the other Bear in double figures, scoring 13 and leading the team with eight rebounds and three assists. Oosdyke tied her career-high in steals with five, knotting her tally from earlier this year at UC Santa Barbara. Timm also had a career-high with steals in the game, getting seven, bettering her previous best of five from earlier this year against South Dakota.

NC vs San Francisco
The Bears renew a short but recent rivalry with the Lady Dons of San Francisco. Monday marks the third game in the series, all since 2007. Each team has won on its home floor and the Bears also defeated Washington State at San Francisco in a Thanksgiving weekend tournament USF hosted in 2008. Courtney Stoermer has played in both games in the series, averaging 11.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game against the Lady Dons, while Kaisha Brown scored nine points in the 2008 contest for the only two on the active roster to have played against USF in their careers.

Scouting San Francisco
San Francisco is 2-8 on the season and in search of its first road victory (0-5). The Lady Dons are also in the midst of a five-game losing streak and are being outscored this year by 14.3 per game. Katy Keating is the only player averaging double figures in points with 10.2 per game. Donnisha Taylor leads the way with 5.5 rebounds a contest and Rheina Ale leads with 3.5 assists per game. USF is averaging 61.3 points and 37.9 rebounds per game, while shooting .369 from the field, .271 from the three-point line and .638 from the free throw line. Opponents are averaging 75.6 points and 45.3 rebounds with a .417 field goal percentage and a .380 three-point percentage. Nine different players have started at least one game for the Lady Dons and no one has started all 10.

On This Date
Northern Colorado is 4-3 in games played on Dec. 20, but have not competed since 2005 when the Bears won an 86-69 game over UMKC. NC is 2-1 in games played at Butler-Hancock on the 20th and three of the seven have been played on neutral turf, with the Bears winning two. 2010 will be the first time Northern Colorado has played a team from California on Dec. 20.

Lock Your Picnic Baskets
These 2010-11 Bears have no problem stealing whatever they can get. Against Denver in the last game, the team had a season-best 15 steals, the best total since Jan. 31, 2009 when they had 17 against Northern Arizona. Northern Colorado has double figures thefts in four of the last five games and five times this season, already tying last year's team. Six times this year a player has recorded five or more steals, with Victoria Timm's seven at Denver the best tally. In 11 games, the Bears are more than halfway to last year's total of 206 steals, with 115.

Home In December
Since the beginning of the 2008-09 season, Northern Colorado has won seven of eight home games, losing only a 74-69 decision to St. Mary's last season. This year, the Bears are 1-0 with a 76-42 win over South Dakota Mines.

Painting The Town
Northern Colorado holds a 318-266 advantage in points in the paint this season. The Bears are averaging 28.9 points per game in the paint, while the opposition is getting just 24.2 per contest. In each of the last four games, the Bears have tallied at least 26 in the paint and in three games this year the team has scored 40 or more.

Helping Hands
Both senior Courtney Stoermer and junior Kaisha Brown sport positive assist-to-turnover ratios this year. Stoermer has 39 assists with 31 turnovers, while Brown has 23 assists with 16 turnovers. Stoermer's ratio of 1.3 ranks sixth in the Big Sky Conference statistics, while Brown doesn't quite meet the minimum requirements of three assists per game, or her 1.4 ratio would rank fourth.

Home Sweet Home
Teams usually play better in front of home fans than in the hostile environments on the road, but the Bears numbers are considerably better at Butler-Hancock so far this year. Below is a look at the differences:

Stat

Home

Road

Difference

Points Per Game

69.2

54.0

+15.2

Points Allowed

54.2

64.8

-10.6

Field Goal %

.426

.332

+.094

Field Goal % Def.

.327

.426

-.099

Free Throw %

.667

.614

+.053

Rebounds Per Game

40.0

37.4

+2.6

Rebounds Allowed

37.0

39.0

-2.0

Assists

14.8

10.4

+4.4

Steals

11.3

11.0

+0.3

Getting The Start
Freshman forward Kim Lockridge has started the last six games for the Bears. Before starting, Lockridge was 6-for-15 from the field (.400). Since moving into the starting lineup, she has shot 9-for-19 from the floor (.474). On the flip side, she had 18 rebounds in her five games off the bench and has just 11 in her six starts.

Forcing The Fumble
For the sixth time in 11 games this season, Northern Colorado forced the opposition into more than 20 turnovers. Denver had 24 miscues in the game, marking the third straight contest the opponent has had 20 or more turnovers. The Bears are now forcing 20.9 turnovers a game in 2010-11. NC is averaging 19.5 turnovers a game, for a +1.5 margin.

Added Spark
Sophomore Victoria Timm is averaging 8.1 points per game off the bench this season, the second-highest non-starting scorer in the Big Sky Conference this season. Tatjana Sparavalo from Eastern Washington is the team's second-leading scorer with 11.3 points per game and has not started a single game in 2010. Timm is fifth on the Bears' team with 8.1 points and third with 10 three-pointers. She is also second in steals (26) and third in assists (22) so far this year.

The Iowa Connection
In the win over South Dakota Mines, junior forward Kaisha Brown made four shots and three of them were assisted by fellow Iowan Courtney Stoermer. Brown returned the favor, assisting the senior guard on one of her three-pointers. In fact, 14 of Stoermer's 39 assists this year are to Brown, the most common connection on the team. On the flip side, Brown has dished to Stoermer five times this year. 

First To 100
Junior forward Kaisha Brown became the first Bear to score 100 points this season. With 5:30 to play in the first half against South Dakota Mines, Brown hit her second triple of the game to give her 102 on the year. With 16:32 left in the game, sophomore forward Lauren Oosdyke became the second player to hit 100 with a layup. Brown now sits at 126 points, while Oosdyke is at 120. Freshman guard D'shara Strange joined the ranks at Nebraska and now has 111 on the season.

Double Trouble
D'shara Strange became the first Bear this season to record a double-double, scoring 14 and grabbing 10 rebounds against Northeastern. She backed that up with 17 points and 12 rebounds at UC Irvine. Strange becomes the fourth active player to record double figures in two categories joining Courtney Stoermer, Lauren Oosdyke and Jayne Strand.

Milestone Watch
Several Bears are approaching career milestones. Junior Kaisha Brown's next rebound will be the 200th of her career. Sophomore Lauren Oosdyke needs just three assists for 50 and she is now 21 rebounds shy of 300. Senior Jayne Strand will score 150 career points with just nine more and sophomore Victoria Timm is just three three-pointers from tying her freshman output of 13.

Good Things Happen
When scoring at least 70 points under Coach Jaime White, Northern Colorado has a record of 30-7, including a 2-1 mark in 2010-11. A year ago, the Bears went 8-2 when putting at least 70 on the scoreboard.

Picked Eighth
The Bears were picked to finish eighth in the Big Sky preseason polls voted on by both the coaches and media. Montana was picked to win the title by both groups, while Eastern Washington, Portland State and Montana State are in the top four, respectively.

Moving On Up
Senior guard Courtney Stoermer moved up one more spot on the career scoring charts at Northern Colorado to eighth. She now has 1,143 career points, needing 78 points to take over seventh on the list.

Time Invested
Senior guard Courtney Stoermer broke the Northern Colorado all-time record for career minutes played in just the second game of her senior season. Stoermer has now played 3,620 minutes in 101 games with the Bears, breaking the previous record of 3,256 minutes by Shelley Lindstrom (1988-92). Stoermer averages 35.8 minutes per game through her career and has played 40 or more minutes in 30 games. She is playing 34.2 minutes per game in 2010-11, the lowest average of her career, but still the fourth-highest average in the Big Sky this season.

Free For All
Forward Lauren Oosdyke and guard Courtney Stoermer became just the eighth and ninth players in Northern Colorado history to make 100 free throws in a season. Oosdyke sank 102 free throws, while Stoermer had 101, during 2009-10, coming within two and three of breaking the school's Division I record of 104 by Heather Barbour (2006-07).

Lucky Number Six
Twice during the 2009-10 season, forward Kaisha Brown tied the Division I school record for three-pointers in a game with six. Brown hit six at Cal State Northridge and  against Portland State. She now ranks eighth in school history with 116 three-pointers, needing 11 more to move into seventh.

Stop Thief!
Senior guard Courtney Stoermer ended the 2009-10 season with 58 steals and is now third on the Northern Colorado all-time charts with 179. With her next steal, she will tie for second all-time with Jill Reifschneider (1993-97) and she is just eight from knotting the school record of 189 held by Renee L'Heureux (1981-85).

Going Streaking
Northern Colorado has now made at least one three-pointer in 279 consecutive games, dating all the way back to Jan. 20, 2001 at South Dakota State.