Holiday Schedule Gives Big West Women's Fans Festive Matchups
Big West Women's Basketball Weekly Release No. 8
The holiday season has plenty of intrigue on the women's hoops side as clubs take on strong regional opposition prior to the New Year.
BIG WEST AT A GLANCE
For Openers: Cal Poly fell in a pair of road contests a week ago, falling to Portland, 83-76, and Oregon, 124-87. The loss to the Pilots snapped the Mustangs’ season-best four game win streak.
Double Up Schlemer: Molly Schlemer played a season high 37 minutes against Portland, racking up an impressive 24 points and 16 rebounds. It was her sixth double double on the season.
The Holiday Ale: Junior Kristen Ale had the right recipe going against the Ducks, pouring in a career-high 25 points in 29 minutes off the bench. Ale’s effort included three made shots from downtown and an 8-of-9 showing at the free throw line.
The Numbers Game...5-0: Cal Poly is 5-0 at home, the lone unbeaten team at home in the Big West. The five victories are also tied with Long Beach State for the most in the league.
CAL STATE FULLERTON
For Openers: Home cooking served Cal State Fullerton well last week as the Titans won a pair of contests at Titan Gym. The squad downed Seattle, 55-53, and New Mexico State, 63-52, for its first back-to-back wins this season.
Sixth Woman Surprise: Natalie Williams had her first double figure scoring game of the season against the Redhawks, putting up 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting. Williams also added seven rebounds and a pair of assists.
Miles Ahead: Chante Miles led the Titans with 22 points against the Aggies, her third 20-point effort of the season. She also canned a career-best four three-pointers and now has scored in double figures in all but one game this season.
The Numbers Game...66.5: Cal State Fullerton leads the Big West in scoring defense at 66.5, one of four teams allowing less than 70 points per game in the league.
CAL STATE NORTHRIDGE
For Openers: Cal State Northridge picked up a split of home games last week, topping Northern Arizona, 64-52, and falling to Saint Mary’s, 72-60.
Mahlknecht Is Legend: Camille Mahlknecht’s season-best six blocks against the Lumberjacks gave her 152 for her career, a new CSUN record.
Just One More: Janae Sharpe had 19 points against the Gaels, the fifth time in her career that she has reached that number and the first this season. Sharpe has never recorded a 20-point game.
The Numbers Game...6: Ashlee Guay is just six steals away from setting a school record in that category. She is part of a defense that ranks second in the Big West with 9.9 steals per outing.
LONG BEACH STATE
For Openers: Long Beach State had a 2-1 record at home last week, which included hosting the Beach Classic. LBSU downed Miami (OH), 76-61, and Richmond, 73-61, before losing to Florida State, 72-57. FSU came into the game ranked #23 in the USA Today poll.
Rounding Into Form: Hallie Meneses moved to a reserve role for the past three games and has responded with her best three-game stretch of the season. She’s averaging 15.7 points on 64.0% shooting and 3.3 assists .
Ol’ Reliable Alex: Alex Sanchez hasn’t had to shoulder the offensive load thanks to the 49ers’ multitude of weapons, but showed she still could against the Seminoles. Sanchez recorded 21 points, five assists, four steals and three rebounds in 33 minutes. She also didn’t have a single turnover.
The Numbers Game...23.0: Long Beach State leads the Big West with 23.0 turnovers forced per game. Its +4.08 turnover margin also ranks 40th in the NCAA.
For Openers: UC Davis opened the week with an impressive road win against Santa Clara, 75-70, then won a home game in overtime against Houston Baptist, 63-58. The game against HBU was the first home contest in a month for the Aggies.
Fipps So Hot Right Now: Sydnee Fipps put up 20+ points in each of her two games last week, upping her consecutive 20-point game streak to three. She is averaging 22.5 points over her last three contests.
Someone Will Handle It: Eight different players have led the Aggies in rebounding in a game this season, the same number of players that average double digit minutes.
The Numbers Game...29.8%: UC Davis shot just 29.8% in the win over Houston Baptist, its lowest percentage in a win since shooting 25.8% against Pacific on February 2, 2008.
For Openers: UC Irvine went 1-1 last week, picking up a home win over New Mexico State, 75-52, and losing to San Diego on the road, 79-55.
Better Than Ever: Camille Buckley poured in a career-high 24 points and added 11 rebounds to lead the Anteaters to the win over the Aggies. The double double was her third in a row and sixth overall this season, tied for second in the Big West.
Methlyn X-Factor: The most important player for UCI might be junior Methlyn Onogomuho. She is averaging 6.9 points, 6.3 rebounds, 1.6 steals and 1.1 assists in 22.0 minutes a night. She has been strickly a reserve this season, giving her some of the more impressive stats in the Big West.
The Numbers Game...23: UC Irvine’ 23-point win over NMSU was the largest margin of victory for the club since a 25-point win over Long Beach State on February 2, 2012.
For Openers: UC Riverside went 0-2 on the road against a pair of Pac-12 foes last week, falling to Washington State, 77-73 in overtime, and to Arizona, 75-59.
Crain Knows Hoops: Brittany Crain leads the Big West in scoring at 18.9 an outing, but is also all over the leaderboard. She is 11th in rebounding (6.1), fourth in three-point percentage (40.7), 10th in free throw shooting (76.6) and tops in steals (2.2) to name a few.
Not In The Paint: The Highlanders lead the Big West in blocked shots at 4.6 per game. Amazingly, no one on the squad is averaging 1.0 blocks per game.
The Numbers Game...1.9: UC Riverside leads the Big West in rebound margin at +1.9. It is one of only three teams in the conference to have a positive rebound margin.
UC SANTA BARBARA
For Openers: UC Santa Barbara went 0-2 in two home contests a week ago, falling to Utah State, 81-70, and Nevada, 77-66.
Nesbit Is Mighty Grand: Nicole Nesbit recorded 11 points against the Aggies, giving her 1,008 career points. She is the 25th player in the storied Gaucho women’s basketball history to achieve the feat.
Ball Control: UC Santa Barbara is averaging a Big West low 14.4 turnovers per game and is second in the league in turnovers forced at 18.8. The Gauchos also have the top turnover margin in the league at +4.5.
The Numbers Game...2: UC Santa Barbara is in the midst of a four-game losing string, only the second time in the Carlene Mitchell era that the club has dropped that many in a row.
For Openers: Hawai’i dropped its final non-conference games of the regular season, road contests at USC, 66-55, and Grand Canyon, 54-51.
Don’t Stay Down Long: Kamilah Jackson scored a season-low five points in a season-low tying 23 minutes against USC. She bounced back with her seventh double double against Grand Canyon to the tune of 14 points and 12 rebounds.
Mason Picking It Up: Morgan Mason has seen an uptick in her minutes over the past three games and an uptick in production. Mason is averaging 8.5 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.3 assists a game in 26.3 minutes.
The Numbers Game...31.5%: Hawai’i is last in the Big West in three pointers made and attempted but rank third in three-point percentage at 31.5%.