February 28, 2008

Women's Basketball Hosts Montana, Montana State

Feb. 28, 2008

Weekly Release: Montana, Montana State Get Acrobat Reader

Games #26-27

Montana (21-5, 11-2 Big Sky) at Northern Colorado (12-13, 6-6 Big Sky)

Thursday, Feb. 28 • Greeley, Colo. • Butler-Hancock (2,734) • 7:05 p.m.

Montana State (13-12, 8-5 Big Sky) at Northern Colorado

Saturday, March 1 • Greeley, Colo. • Butler-Hancock (2,734) • 2:05 p.m.

 

Home Sweet Home

Northern Colorado closes out the regular season with its final four home games at Butler-Hancock. This week the Bears host league-leading Montana on Thursday evening and Montana State on Saturday afternoon. The team is 6-4 at home this season and 2-2 in Big Sky play.

 

Series History

The Bears picked up their first-ever win over Montana State in Bozeman earlier this season, 75-65, then lost a close game at Montana, 73-69. Northern Colorado is now 1-3 all-time against the Bobcats and searching for their first win against the Lady Griz after losing all three previous meetings -- all in Big Sky Conference play. Senior center Danielle Hagen led the team on the Montana swing, averaging 20 points and seven rebounds, while shooting .552 from the field.

 

It's In Their Hands

Northern Colorado is poised to be one of the six teams to advance to the Big Sky Conference Tournament. The Bears currently sit in fifth place with a 6-6 record with four games remaining on the schedule. Montana, Portland State, Idaho State and Montana State have taken four of the six spots in the tournament.

 

A Battle Of The Defenses

Thursday's game against Montana pits the top to teams in the conference in field goal percentage defense, rebounding defense, rebounding margin and defensive rebounds. The Lady Griz rank first in all four categories with the Bears right on their heels.

 

Going Strong To The Hoop

Both junior Jamie Schroeder and senior Danielle Hagen have done a great job of attacking the basket and when fouled, making opponents pay - especially in the month of February. The two have combined to attempt 47 free throws and have missed only three. Hagen is 20-for-21 (.952) from the charity stripe, missing one at Portland State last week, while Schroeder is 24-for-26 (.923) during the second calendar month.

 

Oh So Close

Senior center Danielle Hagen is now just three rebounds shy of tying for fourth on the Northern Colorado career charts. Hagen has 738 boards, while Lou Piel (1976-80) ended her career with 741 caroms. The school record for rebounds is 951 by Trish Williamson (1987-91).

 

Career Night

Freshman guard Courtney Stoermer nearly posted a triple-double in the Bears win over Eastern Washington on Saturday. She tallied career-highs in scoring and rebounding with 21 and 10, respectively and also had seven assists. It marked the first double-double of her career and she is the fifth player this season to have double figures in both scoring and rebounding in the same game.

 

Freshmen Tandem

Northern Colorado has the best freshmen tandem in the Big Sky Conference in Courtney Stoermer and Kate Kevorken. The pair have combined for 497 points, 218 rebounds, 112 assists, 22 blocked shots and 44 steals. Only Kelly Marchant and Kelli Valentine from Portland State have combined for more steals with 50 and Sami Field-Polisso and Emily Christensen from Sacramento State have more assists with 128.

 

Rebounding By Committee

For the first time since the 2003-04 season, four players have tallied more than 100 rebounds in a season. Senior center Danielle Hagen leads the team and ranks second in the Big Sky Conference with 227 boards, while junior Jamie Schroeder has 158, freshman Kate Kevorken has 114 and freshman Courtney Stoermer has 104. This season, the Bears are averaging 37.8 rebounds per game, while in 2003-04 the squad averaged 38.9.

 

Road Warriors

The Bears have won six games away from home this season, five on the road and one at a neutral site. It is the most wins on the road since the 2003-04 team won nine road games and posted an overall record of 16-11.

 

On Pace

If the season ended today, the 2007-08 team would shatter the school record for free throw percentage. The Bears are shooting .760 from the charity stripe this season to rank 20th in the nation and the school record is .719 from the 1989-90 squad.

 

Senior Stepping Up

Senior center Danielle Hagen just broke the school record for consecutive career games started with 108, breaking the old record of 106 by Jill Fadenrecht. Hagen also now has nine straight games where she has played 34 or more minutes. For her career, Hagen is averaging 29.9 minutes per game and this is the first year she has averaged over 30 per contest (32.8).

 

Play It Clean

A good rule of thumb in Big Sky Conference play: Don't Foul. Northern Colorado currently ranks third among league teams shooting .760 from the free throw line and is second shooting .803 against conference opponents. In the NCAA statistics this week, three conference teams rank among the top 20 in free throw percentage. Idaho State leads the nation shooting .825, while Montana ranks 19th at .761 and the Bears are 20th at .760.

 

Double, Double Toil and Trouble

In five of the last six games, someone on the Bears roster has posted a double-double. At Sacramento State and Northern Arizona, senior Danielle Hagen had a pair of double-doubles, while the next two games, against Weber State and Idaho State, junior Jamie Schroeder had back-to-back double-doubles. Freshman Courtney Stoermer was the latest to join the parade with 21 points and 10 rebounds at Eastern Washington on Saturday.

 

She Shoots, She Scores

Of the eight players on the active roster, seven have scored in double figures at least once this season. Freshman guard Paige Ricker was the latest to get in on the action, scoring a career-best 10 against Idaho State, hitting 3-of-4 form the field and 4-of-5 from the free throw line. Only freshman Lara Merritt has yet to notch double figures in the scoring column.

 

Bookworm

Senior center Danielle Hagen was recently named to the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District Second Team. Hagen is currently pursuing her master's degree in sports administration after completing her bachelor's degree in finance last May. She graduated with a 3.9 grade point average and has a perfect 4.00 in graduate school. She is also one of four Big Sky players honored as both Delaney Conway and Kelsey Kahle from Portland State were named to the District VIII First-Team and Eastern Washington's Sydney Benson was a second-team selection.

 

Back On Track

After not scoring in double figures at Sacramento State or Northern Arizona (she had eight in each), junior Jamie Schroeder is back to scoring double figures, as she has now scored over 10 points in 12 of the last 14 games, including five where she topped 20 points.

 

Now Appearing

Freshman guard Kate Kevorken continues to sink three-pointers at an alarming rate and has 56 on the year to rank seventh on the school's single season chart. The school record for single-season three-pointers made is 72 by Diane Dittburner (1999-00). With one more triple, Kevorken will tie for sixth on the chart and three more will tie her for fifth.

 

It's An Honor

For the first time since joining the Big Sky, a Bear earned Player of the Week honors, as senior Danielle Hagen shared the 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 wins over Eastern Washington and Portland State.

 

Total Team Effort

With the shortened bench due to injuries, the Bears now have four different active players averaging over nine points per game. Senior center Danielle Hagen leads the way with 12.9, while junior guard Jamie Schroeder is at 12.7 and freshmen guards Kate Kevorken and Courtney Stoermer are averaging 10.2 and 9.6, respectively. Northern Colorado currently only has eight players suiting up each game.

 

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 and has now started in 108, starting in every game played during her career with the Bears (she sat out the 2006-07 season). Hagen broke the school record for consecutive games started breaking Jill Fadenrecht's (1999-03) total of 98 and the record for games started with 106, which was also held by Fadenrecht. 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).

 

Bears Among National Leaders

Senior center Danielle Hagen ranks 44th among Division I players in rebounds with 9.1 per game and is 56th in free throw percentage, shooting .823 from the charity stripe. Junior guard Jamie Schroeder is 34th in the same category, hitting at a .843 clip. Freshman guard Kate Kevorken also ranks 95th in three-point field goal percentage at .350 and is 75th in three-pointers made per game, hitting 2.2 a game. The team ranks 26th in the same category with their 6.8 a contest and are 20th in free throw percentage, shooting .760 from the charity stripe. The Bears also rank 77th in field-goal percentage defense at .383.

 

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.

 

Going Streaking

Northern Colorado has now made at least one three-pointer in 202 consecutive games, dating all the way back to Jan. 20, 2001 at South Dakota State.

 

Closing In

Several Bears are closing in on career or season milestones. Senior center Danielle Hagen is now just 83 points shy of 1,000 for her career and she needs just seven steals for 100. Sophomore guard Chelsie Luhring needs 12 rebounds for the 100th of her career, while freshman Lara Merritt is eight shy of 50. Jamie Schroeder is now just nine assists shy of 50 for her career. Freshman Courtney Stoermer needs nine points for 250 and 18 assists for 100.

 

Leading The Way - Team Wise

In the Big Sky stats, Northern Colorado ranks second in field goal percentage defense (.383), three-point field goal percentage defense (.292), rebounding defense (36.2), rebounding margin (+1.6), defensive rebounds (27.12) and three-pointers made (6.76) and they are third in scoring defense (63.4), free throw percentage (.760) and rebounding offense (37.8).

 

Leading The Way - Individually

In the individual Big Sky Conference statistics, senior center Danielle Hagen ranks second in the league in rebounds (9.1), ninth in scoring (12.9), fifth in field goal percentage (.474), sixth in free throw percentage (.823) and seventh in minutes played (32.76). Freshman Kate Kevorken ranks fourth in three-pointers made (2.24) and 10th in three-point percentage (.350). Junior Jamie Schroeder ranks 10th in scoring (12.7), 11th in rebounding (6.3), third in free throw percentage (.843) and ninth in three-point percentage (.368), while freshman Courtney Stoermer ranks second in minutes played (35.72), eighth in steals (1.32) and three-point percentage (.372) and ninth in assists (3.28) and assist-to-turnover ratio (0.94)

 

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 Eastern Washington marked the 491st win in program history and the team now needs nine for 500. The Bears are 491-481 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 Lady Griz

Montana currently sits atop the Big Sky Conference standings with an 11-2 conference record and they are 21-5 overall, winning its last four games. Earlier this season the game in Missoula between the two teams came down to the wire, with Montana winning 73-69.

 

Mandy Morales leads the Lady Griz with 16.4 points per game, while Sonya Rogers is second at 12.6 and Johanna Closson averages 10.3. Britney Lohman leads the club with 5.9 rebounds, while Tamara Guardipee is right behind her at 5.5 per game. Morales also leads with 5.1 assists per game, while Lohman is averaging 1.3 steals and 0.96 blocks per game.

 

Montana is averaging 75.4 points, 40.7 rebounds, 6.3 three-pointers, 14.0 assists, 14.5 turnovers, 7.4 steals and 4.3 blocked shots per game while shooting .442 from the floor, .388 from three-point range and .761 from the free throw line. Opponents are averaging 63.3 points, 36.0 rebounds, 7.4 three-pointers, 13.3 assists, 16.4 turnovers, 5.9 steals and 2.6 blocks while connecting on .364 from the field, .323 from beyond the arc and .765 from the charity stripe.

 

Scouting The Bobcats

Montana State has secured a berth to the Big Sky Conference Tournament and is currently in fourth in the standings with an 8-5 record and they are 13-12 overall. In Bozeman, the Bears got their first-ever win over the Bobcats, winning 75-65 behind senior Danielle Hagen's career-best 29 points.

 

Rebecca Mercer ranks nationally in scoring, leading the team with 19.0 per game, while Krislyn Wallace (11.6) and Sarah Strand (10.4) also average double figures in scoring. Nubia Garcia leads the team with 7.1 rebounds, while Wallace averages 6.5 per game. Erica Perry leads the club in both assists and steals with 4.4 and 2.8 per game, respectively and Strand averages a team-best 0.80 blocks per game.

 

Montana State averages 72.6 points, 37.0 rebounds, 5.4 three-pointers, 14.7 assists, 16.2 turnovers, 8.7 steals and 2.5 blocked shots per game and shoots .428 from the field, .338 from three-point range and .737 from the free throw line. Opponents are averaging 71.5 points, 38.7 rebounds, 5.7 three-pointers, 15.0 assists, 18.4 turnovers, 7.8 steals and 2.4 blocks per game while connecting on .431 from the field, .342 from beyond the arc and .719 from the charity stripe.

 

Up Next

Northern Colorado closes out the regular season hosting Northern Arizona on Thursday, March 6 at 7:05 p.m. and Sacramento State on Saturday, March 8 at 2:05 p.m. Saturday will be senior day where Danielle Hagen and Kendra Lambrecht will be honored for their contributions to the program.