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WCC Women's Basketball Weekly Notes

Jan. 12, 2010

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Conference play got underway last weekend with Gonzaga, Pepperdine, Saint Mary's, and San Diego coming away with undefeated records. Gonzaga beat Portland in a game where both teams entered as the top two teams in the conference with 11-4 records, while Pepperdine defeated cross-town rival Loyola Marymount. Saint Mary's and San Diego both defeated San Francisco and Santa Clara.

This week features several crucial matchups as three of the four teams with unbeaten conference records will all face each other as Saint Mary's and San Diego both head up to face Gonzaga.


Saint Mary's at Gonzaga Spokane, WA
6:00 PM
Loyola Marymount at San Francisco San Francisco, CA
7:00 PM
Pepperdine at Santa Clara Santa Clara, CA
7:00 PM
San Diego at Portland Portland, OR
7:00 PM
San Diego at Gonzaga Spokane, WA
2:00 PM
Loyola Marymount at Santa Clara Santa Clara, CA
2:00 PM
Pepperdine at San Francisco San Francisco, CA
2:00 PM
Saint Mary's at Portland Portland, OR
2:00 PM


WCC December Player of the Month: Louella Tomlinson, SMC
Tomlinson led the Gaels to a 6-3 record in December, including a 6-game winning streak with four out of the six games on the road. In December, Tomlinson shot 59.6 percent from the field (53-89), averaged 16.2 points per game and 7.1 blocks per game, keeping her atop the WCC leader board in all three categories going into January's conference action. She is second in the WCC in rebounds (9.7 rpg), maintaining that in the month of December by averaging 9.4 rpg in nine games. On December 3 in the win over Washington State, Tomlinson surpassed USD's Chris Enger (372) to become the new WCC leader in career blocks, recording 12 blocks to give her 373. In the win over Boise State on December 12, Tomlinson recorded 15 blocks, tying a WCC record of blocks in a game (Amy Lundquist, LMU vs. W. Illinois, 12/20/92). The junior was one shy of breaking the NCAA record of blocks in a game, still held by Sandora Irvin of TCU (16 vs. UAB, 1/16/05). The 12 blocks against the Cougars marked a new career high for Tomlinson, but it only lasted a few games before she broke it again with 15 blocks versus Boise State. Tomlinson posted one triple-double and four double-double's in nine games. Her triple-double came in the 80-70 victory over Washington State, finishing with 15 points, 16 rebounds, and 12 blocks. Going into January, Tomlinson leads the nation in triple-double's (3) and blocks (7.0 bpg). She is also seventh in the nation in field goal percentage (62.3). Tomlinson was named WCC Co-Player of the Week for the week of December 7-13 for her outstanding efforts against Boise State.

Also nominated: Heather Bowman, GON; Renahy Young, LMU; Sam Child, USD

WCC Player of the Week: Louella Tomlinson, SMC
Tomlinson led the Gaels to a 2-0 start in West Coast Conference action, with wins over San Francisco (76-64) and Santa Clara (83-55) to improve to 11-6 overall. In the game versus USF, Tomlinson scored a career-high 35 points and posted her ninth double-double of the season (12 rebounds) and was just two blocks shy of her fourth triple-double. Of her 35 points, she was 19-for-20 from the charity stripe, tying an SMC and WCC single game record in free throws made. Against Santa Clara, Tomlinson recorded her third straight double-double, finishing with 18 points and 12 rebounds. On the weekend, Tomlinson shot 66.6 percent from the field (16-for-24) and averaged 26.5 ppg, boosting her overall shooting percentage to 62.8 from the field and an average of 17.8 ppg.

Also nominated: Courtney Vandersloot, GON; Alex Jarrell, PEP; Dominique Conners, USD

Gonzaga Picked as the Favorite in WCC Preseason Coaches Poll
The Gonzaga Bulldogs have been selected as the preseason favorite to win the WCC title this year, receiving seven out of the eight first place votes, for 49 points, as voted on by the league head coaches. The Zags edged out Loyola Marymount, who received the remaining first place vote and totaled 40 points. Coming in a close third to the Lions was Pepperdine with 34 points. In the middle of the pack were Portland, with 31 points for a fourth place finish, and Saint Mary's, who received 29 points for the fifth spot. San Diego finished just behind the Gaels, with 22 points for sixth place. Rounding out the poll are San Francisco and Santa Clara, who tied for seventh with 10 points each.

2009-10 WCC Women's Basketball Preseason Coaches Poll
1. Gonzaga - 49 (7)
2. Loyola Marymount - 39 (1)
3. Pepperdine - 34
4. Portland - 31
5. Saint Mary's - 29
6. San Diego - 22
7. San Francisco - 10
Santa Clara - 10

2009-10 WCC Women's Basketball Preseason All-Conference Team
Miranda Ayim, PEP
Heather Bowman, GON
Dominique Conners, USD
Alex Cowling, LMU
Laiken Dollente, POR
Vivian Frieson, GON
Lena Gipson, SCU
Jontelle Smith, SMC
Louella Tomlinson, SMC
Courtney Vandersloot, GON
Renahy Young, LMU

Three Conference Games Slated For National TV Broadcasts
This season, three WCC women's basketball games will appear on national TV on the CBS College Network as well as ESPNU. Two of the games will air on the CBS College Network, with the WCC Tournament championship game from Las Vegas airing on ESPNU.

WCC Women's Hoops Television Schedule

Feb. 18Loyola Marymount at Gonzaga - 8:00 pm (PT) CBS College Sports
Feb. 27San Diego at Pepperdine - 7:00 pm (PT) CBS College Sports
Mar. 8WCC Tournament Championship - 12:00 pm (PT) ESPNU

WCC Extends Reach Overseas
Several WCC players and coaches decided not to take the summer off and instead took their games overseas. Gonzaga's Janelle Bekkering took the last spot on Canada's Senior Women's National Team, beating out 15 other players selected to tryout. This gave her a chance to play in the FIBA Americas Championships. Saint Mary's Louella Tomlinson played for Australia in this year's World University Games, where she helped her team win a Bronze Medal against the Czech Republic. Dons' Head Coach Tanya Haave took her team on a journey throughout Scandinavia, where it played a five-game tour, going 3-2 against top teams from Sweden, Norway, and Denmark. Pepperdine Head Coach Julie Rousseau got her first taste of Team USA as she was an assistant coach for the World University Team, who ended up winning the Gold Medal against Russia at the World University Games. Below is a list of all the international players competing in the WCC.

Multiple WCC Teams In The Postseason For 11th Straight Year
For the 11th straight season, and the 15th time in the past 16 years, the West Coast Conference was represented by multiple teams in the postseason. Gonzaga captured the league's automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament by winning the WCC Tournament, while Portland was selected to play in the WNIT against Portland State. It marked the second appearance for both programs in their respective tournaments. Gonzaga pulled off the upset as the 12th seed, taking down fifth seeded Xavier, 74-59 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to give the program its first ever NCAA Tournament victory. In round two, the Zags went back and forth with No. 4 seed Pittsburgh, as the lead changed 16 times, before losing the lead for good with two minutes to go, losing 65-60. The Pilots had control of their game in the second half, leading by as many as nine, but were unable to hold on for the win.

WCC Basketball Championships Remain in Las Vegas Through 2012
The West Coast Conference and Orleans Arena announced a three-year contract extension that will keep the WCC Men's and Women's Basketball Championships in Las Vegas through 2012.

The extension comes after the West Coast Conference sold out the Orleans Arena for the 2009 WCC Basketball Championships. The 2009 championship, which was the WCC's first-ever at a neutral site, set conference records for both total championship attendance (33,320) and single session championship attendance (7,845).

The agreement will bring the WCC Basketball Championships to the Orleans Arena on March 5-8 of 2010, March 4-7 of 2011, and March 2-5 of 2012.

The 2010 WCC Championships will feature the same format as the 2009 event, with a combined total of 14 men's and women's games over four days. Tickets for the 2010 championship will go on sale to the general public on Friday, November 13.

Saint Mary's Louella Tomlinson Re-Breaks WCC Blocks Record
Junior Louella Tomlinson followed up her record-setting freshman campaign, in which she set an NCAA and WCC single-season blocks (152) record, by setting a new WCC record with 161 in her sophomore season. The NCAA record for career blocks is 480, and if Tomlinson keeps up her pace, she will shatter that mark with 626 career blocks. Her single season total for one season was so high, that it also ranks No. 1 on the Gaels' all-time career list.

Gonzaga's Heather Bowman and Courtney Vandersloot Named to Preseason Wooden Award Watch List
Gonzaga University women's basketball teammates Heather Bowman and Courtney Vandersloot were named to the preseason Women's Wooden Award All-American Team and Player of the Year trophy announced by Richard "Duke" Llewellyn, Wooden Award Chairman. Bowman, a senior, becomes the first Bulldog to be nominated for the award in back-to-back seasons as she also made the list last season. Vandersloot is the second-ever Zag player to make the list.

Gonzaga is one of only four schools with two preseason candidates. The others are the University of Connecticut (Maya Moore, Tina Charles), Ohio State University (Jantel Lavender, Samantha Prahalis) and Stanford University (Jayne Appel, Jeanette Pohlen).

This list is composed of 31 student-athletes who, based on last year's individual performance and team records, are the early frontrunners for college basketball's most prestigious honor.

In late December, the Wooden Award Committee will release the Midseason Top 20 list, followed in March by the National Ballot, consisting of approximately 15 top players who have proven to their universities that they are also making progress toward graduation and maintaining a cumulative 2.0 GPA. The Women's Wooden Award All-American Team will be announced the week of the "Elite Eight" round during the NCAA Tournament. The presentation of the Wooden Award All-American Teams and the Legends of Coaching Award will take place the weekend of April 9-11, 2010.

WCC Returning Record Setters
The WCC returns seven players who are already in the the league's all-time season and career record books.

Record         Player                 Place   TotalPoints (S) Heather Bowman, GON  (4)     641Points (C)Heather Bowman, GON  (9)  1,666Assists (S) Courtney Vandersloot, GON (3)     239Rebounds (S) Lena Gipson, SCU  (5)     307Blocks (S)  Louella Tomlinson, SMC  (1)     161FG Pct. (S) Ashlee Smith, SMC  (10)    56.93FG Pct. (S) Morgan Henderson, USD     (9)     44.9Blocks (C)  Louella Tomlinson, SMC  (2)     317FT Pct. (C) Laiken Dollente, POR  (3)     87.0FT Pct. (S)Laiken Dollente, POR  (3)  91.4

S= Season, C= Career

All-WCC Performers Highlight Squads
Seven All-WCC performers return to their respective squads this year, along with five players that earned honorable mention honors last season. Gonzaga returns three all-WCC players in Courtney Vandersloot, who won Player of the Year, Heather Bowman, and Vivian Frieson. Pepperdine returns Miranda Ayim, while Saint Mary's brings back Louella Tomlinson, who won Defensive Player of the Year. LMU's Renahy Young and Portland's Laiken Dollente round out the returning all-conference players.

Player                    YRPPGMiranda Ayim, PEP    SR11.5Heather Bowman, GON    SR19.4Laiken Dollente, POR    SR15.3Vivian Frieson, GON    SR10.0Louella Tomlinson, SMC    JR15.2Courtney Vandersloot, GON   JR16.4Renahy Young, LMU    JR14.7



Overall Record: 12-4
WCC Record: 1-0
  • Gonzaga had just one game last week, defeating Portland, 90-54, to open conference play.

  • SR Heather Bowman led the way offensively with a game-high 23 points to go along with six rebounds and two steals. It was her fifth game of the season with 20 or more points.

  • JR Courtney Vanersloot just missed out on a double-double with 18 points (7-of-11) and nine assists to go along with six steals. It marked her 10th game with four or more steals as she ranks fourth in the country (3.9) as well as first in assists (9.3).

  • Bowman is currently third in the league in scoring (15.9) and is just 34 points away from becoming the league's all-time leading scorer.

  • The Zags are at home this week against Saint Mary's (1/14) and San Diego (1/16).
  • Overall Record: 7-8
    WCC Record:0-1
  • LMU had just one game last week, falling at Pepperdine, 82-65, to open conference play.

  • SO Alex Cowling led all scorers with 18 points, all of which came in the second half, marking her eighth game in which she led the Lions offensively.

  • SR Kavita Goss scored 12 points, all of which came from beyond the arc, to move her into a tie for seventh place on the program's all-time list for three-pointers made. She has now hit seven threes in her last three games.

  • To date, JR Renahy Young has scored 981 points in her career and she is well on her way to joining the 1,000 point club and would be just the 11th player in school history to achieve the feat.

  • The Lions are on the road this week at San Francisco (1/14) and Santa Clara (1/16).
  • Overall Record: 10-5
    WCC Record: 1-0
  • Pepperdine had just one game last week, defeating Loyola Marymount, 82-65, to open conference play.

  • SO Alex Jarrell scored a career-high 16 points (7-of-11) in just 20 minutes off the bench to lead the team in scoring.

  • SO Lauren Bell snapped her four-game streak without a three-pointer, going 2-of-3 from beyond the arc to finish with 11 points.

  • SR Miranda Ayim was limited to just eight points after playing just 19 minutes due to foul trouble, but was able to go 6-of-6 from the line. SO Skye Barnett was the only other Wave player in double-figures with 14 points on 6-of-9 shooting.

  • Pepperdine is on the road this week at Santa Clara (1/14) and San Francisco (1/16).
  • Overall Record: 11-5
    WCC Record: 0-1
  • Portland had just one game last week, falling at Gonzaga, 90-54, to open conference play.

  • SR Laiken Dollente led the team with 17 points, including hitting three from beyond the arc and all six of her free throws. She has now hit 22 consecutive free throws over her last six games and has only missed a total of six all year to rank second in the country with a 93.1 free throw percentage. JR Jessica Clemens was the only other Pilot in double figures, finishing with 10 points and seven rebounds.

  • Dollente has also hit at least three from downtown in five of her last six games and ranks 12th in the country with a 47.2 shooting percentage from deep.

  • Portland hosts San Diego (1/14) and Saint Mary's (1/16) this week.
  • Overall Record: 11-6
    WCC Record: 2-0
  • Saint Mary's went undefeated to open conference play, beating San Francisco, 76-64, and Santa Clara, 83-55.

  • JR Louella Tomlinson was named WCC Player of the Month for the second consecutive time in December after averaging 16.2 points, 9.4 rebounds, and 6.5 blocks, while shooting 59.6 percent to lead the Gaels to a 6-3 record. She was also named the Player of the Week after averaging 26.5 points and 12 rebounds, while shooting 62.8 percent over the weekend, including a career-high 35 points in the win over San Francisco. With 436 career blocks, she is already the WCC's all-time leader and is just 45 away from breaking the NCAA all-time record.

  • After going for double figures in just the second and third games of the season, FR Kate Gaze scored 12 against San Francisco and a career-high 15 versus the Broncos.

  • The Gaels are on the road this week at Gonzaga (1/14) and Portland (1/16).
  • Overall Record: 10-6
    WCC Record: 2-0
  • San Diego went undefeated last week to open conference play, beating Santa Clara, 60-44, and San Francisco, 54-47.

  • SO Dominique Conners averaged 15.0 points in the two contests, while also collecting eight steals. Her 3.1 steals per game ranks 24th nationally.

  • JR Sam Child led all scorers in the game against Santa Clara, finishing with 15 points on 7-of-13 shooting.

  • After coming into the weekend averaging 5.4 points, SO Morgan Woodrow finished with 11 points against Santa Clara and 16 versus San Francisco.

  • The Toreros continue conference play this week on the road at Portland (1/14) and Gonzaga (1/16).
  • Overall Record: 4-15
    WCC Record: 0-2
  • San Francisco went winless last week falling to Sacramento State, 77-74, before losing to Saint Mary's, 76-64, and San Diego, 54-47, to open conference play.

  • SO Rheina Ale led the team in scoring in all three games, including going for 23 points and nine rebounds against Sacramento. JR Donnisha Taylor posted her third double-double of the season with 12 points and 15 rebounds.

  • SO Vania Singleterry went for double-digit scoring in all three games after only having done so in four games all season.

  • Ale is third in the league in three-pointers (40), while Taylor is third in rebounding (7.9).

  • USF hosts Loyola Marymount (1/14) and Pepperdine (1/16) this week.
  • Overall Record: 2-15
    WCC Record: 0-2
  • Santa Clara went winless last week to open conference play, falling to San Diego, 60-44, and Saint Mary's, 83-55.

  • SO Alyssa Shoji led the team in scoring against the Toreros as the only player in double figures with 13 points to go along with three from downtown. JR Lena Gipson just missed out on a double-double with eight points and nine rebounds.

  • FR Meagan Fulps led the offense against the Gaels with 19 points on 6-of-9 shooting, including going 3-of-4 from beyond the arc, while also pulling down seven rebounds.

  • Shoji paces the conference with 47 three-pointers and her 2.8 threes per game ranks 28th in the country, while Gipson's 9.9 rebounds per game ranks 27th.

  • Santa Clara hosts Pepperdine (1/14) and Loyola Marymount (1/16) this week.