January 22, 2008

Women's Basketball Makes Toughest Road Trip In Conference

Jan. 22, 2008

Weekly Release: at Montana State; at Montana Get Acrobat Reader

Games #18-19

Northern Colorado (9-8, 3-1 Big Sky) at Montana State (8-9, 3-2 Big Sky)

Thursday, Jan. 24 • Bozeman, Mont. • Worthington Arena (7,250) • 7:05 p.m.

Northern Colorado at Montana (14-4, 4-1 Big Sky)

Saturday, Jan. 26 • Missoula, Mont. • Dahlberg Arena (7,500) • 7:05 p.m.

 

The Series.......................... MSU........................ UM

Overall Record..................... 0-3........................ 0-2

In Greeley........................... 0-2........................ 0-1

At Opponent......................... 0-1........................ 0-1

At Neutral Sites.................... 0-0........................ 0-0

Last Meeting..................... 2006-07.............. 2006-07

White vs.............................. 0-2........................ 0-2

 

The Coaches

Northern Colorado.... Jaime White (14-32, second year)

Montana State............................ Tricia Binford (24-48, third year)

Montana............................... Robin Selvig (448-129, 21st year*)

   *at current school

 

Radio

   KFKA 1310 AM.............. J.J. McKay, play-by-play

 

Audio Streaming

   KFKA............................................. 1310kfka.com

 

Television

   None

 

Video Streaming

   Big Sky............................................. bigskytv.org

 

Live Stats

   Montana State.............................. msubobcats.com

                Montana    montanagrizzlies.com

 

Not An Easy Task

Northern Colorado has quite possibly the hardest road trip in the Big Sky Conference facing them this week as they play at Montana State on Thursday evening and at Montana on Saturday evening. The Bobcats are 8-9 on the year and 3-2 in league action, while the Lady Griz are 14-4 overall and 4-1 in conference play, along with winners of 11 of their last 12 games.

 

Series History

The Bears are looking for their first win in both series, as they are 0-3 all-time against Montana State and 0-2 against Montana. The only meeting outside of Big Sky Conference play happened back in 1980 against the Bobcats and last year, NC fell 68-47 in Bozeman and 77-49 in Greeley, while last year against the Lady Griz the Bears lost 85-54 in Missoula and 74-56 in Greeley.

 

It's An Honor

For the first time since joining the Big Sky Conference, a Bear has earned Player of the Week honors, as senior Danielle Hagen shared this week's award with Natalie Doma of Idaho State. Hagen averaged 17.5 points, 12 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game, while going 61.1 percent from the field and 85.7 percent from the free-throw line in the two wins.

 

Win At Home, Split On The Road

Many coaches feel to be successful in conference play you must take care of the home games and split on the road, and that's just what Northern Colorado has done in Big Sky play. The Bears are 2-0 at home with wins over Eastern Washington and Portland State and split the first weekend on the road, losing at Idaho State and defeating Weber State.

 

Trifecta

Northern Colorado is currently on a three-game winning streak, the longest of the season for the Bears and the longest since the 2005-06 season (1/28 UCCS; 2/4 at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi; 2/6 at Texas Pan American). The third win of the streak, against Portland State, gave the Bears nine wins for the season and the next will double last year's total of five victories.

 

Total Team Effort

With the shortened bench due to injuries, the Bears now have four different active players averaging over 10 points per game. Junior guard Jamie Schroeder leads the way with 10.9, while senior center Danielle Hagen is at 10.4 and freshmen guards Courtney Stoermer and Kate Kevorken are averaging 10.2 and 10.1, respectively. Northern Colorado currently only has eight players suiting up each game.

 

Hagen Takes Over

Senior center Danielle Hagen had arguably the best game of her career in the win over then-first place Portland State on Saturday. She scored 20 points, including making five of six free throws in the final 44 seconds to cement the win, as well as grabbing 16 rebounds, recording four assists and two blocked shots. Hagen now ranks eighth in career rebounding with 669, passing Marianne Clark's 655 (1996-00), and is now 10th in career assists with 230, passing Tonya Kluck's 226 (1993-95).

 

En Fuego

Freshman guard Kate Kevorken checked into the game on Thursday evening against Eastern Washington with 12:39 left in the first half and promptly made her first five shots from the three-point line between the 10:20 and 2:05 marks. She ended the game with a career-best six three-pointers and tied her career high with 18 points in the game. With the two treys against Portland State, she now has 40 on the season and is just 10 shy of appearing on the Northern Colorado single-season top-10 list.

 

Sharp Shooting

Against Eastern Washington on Thursday, Northern Colorado shot .538 in the first half en route to .480 for the game. Both are season highs for the Bears. They also tallied a season-high 21 assists in the victory and knocked down 12 three-pointers with six different players connecting on at least one from beyond the arc. Freshman guard Kate Kevorken tied her career high with 18 points, while senior center Danielle Hagen had a then-season high 15 and sophomore guard Chelsie Luhring tallied a career-high 12 points.

 

Out Of The Blocks

Northern Colorado is 9-1 this season when leading at half-time and 0-7 when trailing after the first 20 minutes of play. In both games over the weekend, the Bears built a big first-half lead and managed to sustain until the end, as they were outscored in the second half of both contests.

 

Short Bench

Northern Colorado has been hit by the injury bug and currently has just eight active players on the roster. Junior guard Whitley Cox is out for the remainder of the season with a left leg injury, while sophomore Alisa Christopherson is out for an unspecified amount of time with knee troubles, freshman Lexie Boyce is taking a personal leave of absence from the team and freshman Cayla Maneotis is redshirting her first year after having knee surgery.

 

The Century Club

Senior center Danielle Hagen played and started in her 100th career game against Portland State on Saturday. She has started every game played during her career with the Bears (she sat out the 2006-07 season). She broke the school record for consecutive games started breaking Jill Fadenrecht's (1999-03) total of 98. The school record for most games played is 113 by Kara Ketterer (1996-00), while the record for consecutive games played stands at 112 by Shelley Lindstrom (1988-92).

 

Another First

The win over Weber State marked the first-ever road win in Big Sky Conference play for the Bears. Last season the Bears were 0-8 away from Butler-Hancock and 2-6 at home for an overall record of 2-14 in the first season in the league.

 

A Schroeder Explosion

Junior forward Jamie Schroeder has tied or tallied a career-high in each of the last four games, notching 18 points in each game against San Jose State and St. Mary's and then bettered that with 21 points at Idaho State and extended her career-high to 28 at Weber State. She is leading the conference in league-only games in scoring with 24.5 points per game as well as field goal percentage at .640 and free throw percentage with a perfect 13-for-13.

 

Bears Among National Leaders

Senior center Danielle Hagen ranks 38th among Division I players in rebounds with 9.3 per game and is 49th in free throw percentage, shooting .839 from the charity stripe. Freshman guard Kate Kevorken also ranks 93rd in three-point field goal percentage at .360 and is 60th in three-pointers made per game, hitting 2.4 a game. The team ranks 19th in the same category with their 7.2 a contest and are 50th in free throw percentage, shooting .734 from the charity stripe.

 

Take Care Of The Ball

For just the fourth time this year the Bears recorded a positive assist-to-turnover ratio against Weber State with 17 assists and a season-low 11 turnovers. Northern Colorado is 3-1 in games with more assists than turnovers, with the lone exception being at Colorado.

 

National Girls & Women In Sports

On February 7 in the game against Weber State, the Bears will support National Girls & Women In Sports Day. A clinic will be offered the afternoon of the 6th. Stay tuned to uncbears.com for more information.

 

Helping Hands

Northern Colorado players are doing a great job of setting up their teammates this season, as 62% of all shots are assisted. Five different active players have 20 or more assists on the year, led by freshman guard Courtney Stoermer's 56 (3.29/game). She is also the only player on the team with a positive assist-to-turnover ratio (1.02) to rank eighth in the Big Sky statistics.

 

No Bench Warmer

Freshman guard Kate Kevorken is the only non-starter in the Big Sky Conference to rank among the top 25 in scoring. She currently ranks 20th with 10.1 points per game and also ranks 19th in rebounds with 4.8 a contest. She has nine double figure scoring games off the bench and one double-double (SE Missouri State).

 

Non-Conference Recap

The Bears posted a 6-7 non-conference record during 2007, including their first true road victory during Jaime White's tenure as head coach with the 69-46 win at San Jose State on Dec. 28. They also won a neutral site contest against Southeast Missouri State back on Nov. 24 at New Mexico State.

 

Uncontested

In four of the first eight games this season, the Bears shot below 60 percent from the free throw line, but have turned things around, shooting at least .625 in each of the last nine games, including a season-best .867 (13-15) at Saint Mary's. Northern Colorado is now shooting .734 from the charity stripe this season, compared to .657 for the opposition.

 

Going Streaking

Northern Colorado has now made at least one three-pointer in 194 consecutive games, dating all the way back to Jan. 20, 2001 at South Dakota State. This season, the Bears have connected on at least three triples in all 17 contests.

 

I'll See Your Five And Raise You Four

With the win over San Jose State, Northern Colorado surpassed its win total from last season, posting its sixth victory of the year and the Bears now have nine after winning three straight. In 2006-07, the Bears were 5-24, while this year they are 9-8. Through the first 17 games last season, the team had just three victories and two were over Division II schools, while this year, all nine wins are against Division I teams.

 

Closing In

Several Bears are closing in on career or season milestones. Senior center Danielle Hagen's is now just two blocked shots from tying for 10th in school history. She currently has 51. Hagen is also just 28 points shy of 800 for her career and 31 rebounds shy of 700. Freshman guard Kate Kevorken is 10 three-pointers shy of appearing on the school's single season list and 28 points shy of 200 for the season. Sophomore guard Chelsie Luhring is 27 points shy of 100 this season, while junior Jamie Schroeder is 14 points shy of 200 and freshman Courtney Stoermer needs 27 for the same milestone.

 

On These Dates

In games played on Jan. 24, NC is 8-2 all-time and won its first five games played on that date and the Bears are 3-6 all-time in contests on Jan. 26.

 

Leading The Way - Team Wise

Through games played on Jan. 20, Northern Colorado ranks first in scoring defense (61.9) and defensive rebounds (27.82) and second in field goal percentage defense (.374), three-point field goal percentage defense (.288), rebounding offense (39.1), rebounding margin (+1.5) and three-point field goals made (7.18). In conference games only, the Bears lead the conference in three-point field goal percentage (.429) and three-pointers made per game (7.50) and are second in field goal percentage defense (.358), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.05) and defensive rebounds (27.25).

 

Leading The Way - Individually

In the individual Big Sky Conference statistics, senior center Danielle Hagen ranks third in the league in rebounds (9.3), fourth in free throw percentage (.839), sixth in offensive rebounds (2.59) and second in defensive rebounds (6.71). Junior guard Jamie Schroeder ranks sixth in field goal percentage (.464), 10th in free throw percentage (.776) and sixth in three-point field goal percentage (.419), while freshman guard Courtney Stoermer ranks eighth in assists (3.29), 10th in three-point field goal percentage (.369), seventh in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.08), and second in minutes played (35.65), while freshman guard Kate Kevorken is fourth in three-pointers made (2.35).

 

No One Likes To See That

Unfortunately, junior guard Whitley Cox suffered a season-ending injury to her left knee in the game against Air Force. Cox will hopefully be able to receive a medical hardship and have two full seasons of eligibility remaining. She was leading the team and ranked second in the Big Sky Conference averaging 20.1 points per game.

 

Now Eligible

The Northern Colorado women's basketball team is now eligible to compete in postseason play in 2007 after successfully making the transition to Division I. This year marks the first year the Bears are also eligible to win the Big Sky Conference Championship as well as compete in the Big Sky Tournament.

 

Chosen Ninth

The University of Northern Colorado women's basketball team was chosen by both the Big Sky Conference coaches and media to finish ninth in league play during 2007-08. The Bears received 11 votes in the coaches poll and 34 in the media poll. Montana was picked to win in both the coaches and media preseason polls, while Idaho State is picked to finish second in both polls.

 

On The Horizon

Northern Colorado continues to inch closer to a large program milestone. The win against Portland State marked the 488th win in program history and the team now needs 12 for 500. The Bears are 488-476 all-time.

 

Bears Add Three

Head Coach Jaime White announced the signing of three student-athletes in Kaisha Brown, Courtney Kranz and Lauren Oosdyke.

Kaisha Brown, 5-10, G/F, Spirit Lake, Iowa (Spirit Lake HS)

Brown averaged 14.0 points and 4.9 rebounds per game as a junior with four games over 20 or more points in a game. Was a second-team All-Northwest Iowa Girls Basketball selection last year.

Courtney Kranz, 6-3, C, Mendota Heights, Minn. (Visitation HS)

Kranz is a three-time letterwinner entering her senior season with the Blazers. She is also a two-time all-conference selection and was the only unanimous pick as a junior. She helped lead her team to the conference championship last year and also is a three-time letterwinner in volleyball, where her team was three-time conference champions. She plays club basketball for the NC Heat where they placed third at the AAU Nationals last season.

Lauren Oosdyke, 5-11, F, Coto de Caza, Calif. (Santa Margarita Catholic HS)

Was a first-team All-Trinity League selection as a junior after being named a second-team all-conference selection in the Sierra League as a sophomore. She has also been named to several all-tournament teams throughout her career. Averages 10 points and eight rebounds per game to go along with a 58% field goal percentage from the field.

 

Scouting The Bobcats

Montana State is currently right behind the Bears in the Big Sky Conference standings with a 3-2 mark and are 8-9 overall. Last week, the Bobcats defeated Weber State, 77-65 and fell 85-80 to Idaho State.

 

Rebecca Mercer leads the team with 17.1 points per game, while Krislyn Wallace averages 12.9 a game and Sarah Strand chips in 10.9. Nubia Garcia leads the team with 6.7 rebounds per game, while Wallace is right behind her at 6.6 a contest. Erica Perry is averaging a team-best 4.06 assists  and leads the Big Sky with 2.88 steals per contest, while Strand is getting 1.00 blocked shot a game. Strand also paces the team with a .477 field goal percentage, while Mercer hits for .438 from beyond the arc and .804 from the free throw line.

 

Montana State averages 70.7 points, 36.8 rebounds, 5.4 three-pointers, 14.5 assists, 16.9 turnovers, 8.8 steals and 2.8 blocks per game while shooting .427 from the field, .342 from the three-point line and .713 from the free throw line. Opponents are averaging 70.6 points, 39.9 rebounds, 5.8 three-pointers, 14.3 assists, 18.8 turnovers, 8.4 steals and 2.5 blocks while connecting for .421 from the field, .347 from beyond the arc and .707 from the charity stripe.

 

The Bobcats also rank second in the conference in steals (8.82) and third in field goal percentage (.427), three-point field goal percentage (.342), assists (14.53) and turnover margin (+1.88).

 

Scouting The Lady Griz

Montana has won 11 of its last 12 games with the lone loss a 90-77 setback at Idaho State on Thursday. The Lady Griz are currently tied for first place in the conference standings at 4-1 along with Portland State and Idaho State, and are 14-4 overall. Montana also defeated Weber State 62-53 on Saturday.

 

Mandy Morales leads the Lady Griz with 16.3 points per game, while Sonya Rogers is the other player in double figures with 12.9 a contest. Tamara Guardipee is averaging a team-best 6.4 rebounds and 1.00 blocked shots per game, while Morales leads with 5.7 assists per game and Johanna Closson averages a team-best 1.44 steals per game. Rogers shoots a team-best .500 from the field and .476 from beyond the arc, while Closson leads the way shooting .838 from the free throw line.

 

Montana averages 74.1 points, 40.8 rebounds, 6.1 three-pointers, 14.1 assists, 15.6 turnovers, 8.0 steals and 4.2 blocks while shooting .439 from the field, .387 from the three-point line and .735 from the free throw line. Opponents are averaging 62.2 points, 36.7 rebounds, 6.8 three-pointers, 13.0 assists, 17.9 turnovers, 6.6 steals and 2.9 blocks per game, while shooting .361 from the floor, .299 from beyond the arc and .743 from the charity stripe.

 

The Lady Griz lead the Big Sky in scoring margin (+11.9), field goal percentage (.439), field goal percentage defense (.361), three-point field goal percentage (.387), rebounding offense (40.8), rebounding defense (36.7), rebounding margin (+4.1) and turnover margin (+2.33).