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Toreros Prep for Bay Area Rivals SCU and SMC

Jan. 15, 2007

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IN A NUTSHELL: Fresh off back-to-back thrilling games, the University of San Diego women's basketball team (14-3, 3-0 WCC) will look to extend their four-game winning streak as they travel to the Bay Area for a pair of West Coast Conference games this week. USD will first head to Santa Clara for a 7 p.m. showdown on Thursday, then will head to Moraga, Calif. on Saturday for a 2 p.m. game against Saint Mary's.

LAST TIME OUT:. Amanda Rego's free throw with 17 seconds remaining, and Loyola Marymount University's Amanda DeCoud's missed free throw with three seconds remaining lifted the University of San Diego women's basketball team to a thrilling 50-49 West Coast Conference win over LMU, who was tabbed a the co-favorite to win the WCC, Saturday afternoon at the Jenny Craig Pavilion. With less than one minute to play, USD was clinging on to a one-point lead at 49-48 thanks to a Kelly Winther jumper with 2:05 remaining. Each team had opportunities to score, but neither could put the ball in the basket. Then Cassady Moore fouled Rego, who hit 1-of-2 free throws to give USD a two-point lead with 17 seconds remaining. Winther then fouled DeCoud with three seconds left under the basket to give LMU an opportunity to tie the game. DeCoud sank the first free throw, then missed the second, and the long rebound went into the hands of Rego, who was in turned fouled with one second remaining. Rego missed the free throw, and the ball went out of bounds as time expired to give USD the win. Winther led the team in scoring with 12 points on 5-of-11 shooting. Rego was the only other USD player in double figures with 11 points on 4-of-8 shooting, while also dishing out six assists and pulling down a game-high eight rebounds. The Toreros shot 41 percent from the floor and out rebounded the Lions 37-29.

ABOUT THE RECORD: With the win over Pepperdine and LMU this past week, USD has improved to 3-0 in WCC action for the first time since the 1998-99 season. USD has also won 14 games for the first-time since the 1999-2000 season and are off to the best start in program history. Should USD win one of these two games, it will mark the first time since the 1999-2000 season, in which USD made its last appearance in the NCAA Tournament, that the Toreros have won 15 games. If the Toreros defeat Santa Clara on Thursday, it will be the first time since the 1993-94 season that USD has began 5-0 in conference play, and should they complete the sweep and defeat Saint Mary's on Saturday, it will mark the first time since the 1985-86 season that USD began WCC play with a 6-0 record.

SCOUTING THE BRONCOS: Santa Clara enters the game with a 10-8 overall record and a 2-1 mark in the WCC after splitting a pair this past week. SCU dropped a heart breaker to Gonzaga in overtime, then bounced back with a win over Portland. The Broncos hold the all-time series record with the Toreros at 29-18. The Broncos are led offensively by Candice Cronk, who has a team-best 16.7 points per game average. Both Jen Gottschalk and Ashley Graham are averaging just over 11 points per game as the only other Broncos in double figures.

REGO NAMED WCC PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Junior point guard Amanda Rego has been tabbed as the West Coast Conference Player of the Week after helping guide USD to a 2-0 record this past week. Rego led USD to two conference wins to begin WCC action 3-0 for the first time since the 1998-99 season and move to 14-3 overall. This marks the first time since the 1998-2000 season that USD has won 14 games. Rego averaged 10.5 points per game, and eight assists per game. She racked up four steals, 12 rebounds and hit 47 percent of her shots from the floor. Rego tallied her conference-leading sixth double-double of the season in Thursday's win over Pepperdine with 10 points, and game-high 10 assists.

WINTHER HAS HUGE WEEK: Sophomore guard Kelly Winther had a huge week for the Toreros, as she led the offense with an average of 14 points per game. Winther began the week with a 16-point outburst in the win over Pepperdine on 7-of-13 shooting. Winther then followed that up with a 12 point performance, on 5-of-11 shooting, in the thrilling one-point win over Loyola Marymount. Winther is now averaging 10.9 points per game, good for second best on the team.

COME BACK KIDS: San Diego has now overcome a double-digit lead in its past three games. Against San Francisco in their WCC opener, the Toreros fell behind by as many as 14, before overcoming that deficit to claim the win. In Thursday's win against Pepperdine, they trailed by as many as 13 before launching another come-from-behind win and in Sunday's win over Loyola Marymount, the Toreros over came a 13-point deficit to win the game.

LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION: All USD home games, as well as select road games, will be streamed live via video on the athletics department website. Fans can watch all the action live from the comfort of their home by logging onto usdtoreros.com. Once on the home page, click the LIVE button on the top right of the page. Two former USD basketball standouts Paula Bott (play-by-play) and Susie Erpelding (color) will bring you all the action. The pair not only set USD records on the court but both earned the West Coast Conference Female Scholar Athlete of the Year award, the only two student-athletes in USD women's basketball history to receive such honors. This is a subscription service that will give you access to live video events of USD athletic teams, coaching interviews and much more. The cost for this service will be $6.95 per month or a yearly subscription can be purchased for $49.95.

STILL LEADING THE NATION: Junior point guard Amanda Rego is still leading the nation in assists per game with an average of 7.9. Rego has been an assist machine this season as she has not only set the new USD single-game assists mark with 14, but that 14 assists is also tied for the single-game high this season across the country. Rego continues her climb up the record charts at USD in career assists as she is now ranked seventh all-time with 292 assists. For her career, Rego is also averaging 4.4 assists per game, which is the top spot at USD in career assists per game. Her 135 assists on the season not only leads the nation, but also places her second in single-season assists at USD.

KIVA SHOWING IFF HER GAME: Sophomore forward Kiva Herman has been making the most of her playing time. This past week, Herman came up big for the Toreros as she averaged nine points per game and five boards a game. In the win against Pepperdine, Herman was a key component for the Toreros as she scored eight points. Now eight points, might not seem like a great stat, but it was the things she did off the ball that made her so impressive. Once USD got a defensive rebound, Herman was sprinting down the court giving the Toreros a fast break opportunity, and Pepperdine had trouble keeping up with her. Herman also played solid defense in helping shut down the high powered Pepperdine offense.

VOISINET SHOWS OFF HER DEFENSIVE SKILL: Senior Ashley Voisinet got a chance to show off her defensive skills this past week. In Sunday's win against Loyola Marymount, Voisinet had one major role, to shut down Amanda Patton of LMU, who had just scored 24 points two nights before. Voisinet did just that, as Patton only mustered up five points thanks to Voisinet's smothering defense. Voisinet not only had a great defensive game, but in Thursday's win against Pepperdine, she had one of her best offensive outputs of her four-year career. Voisinet tied her career-high with 13 points, including hitting a huge lay-up with under a minute remaining to help lift the Toreros to the win.

DEFENSE WINS BALL GAMES: The old saying holds truth to the Toreros this season. USD is leading the conference in scoring defense as they hold opponents to just 56.8 points per game. USD is also second in the WCC in steals per game at 10.59 and opponent shooting percentage at .393.

REGO NAMED WCC CO-PLAYER OF THE MONTH: Amanda Rego helped San Diego continue its best start in program history, as the Toreros went 5-3 during the month of December to improve to 10-3 on season. Rego did a little bit of everything for USD, setting conference-highs with 6.88 assists per game and 3.5 steals per contests. The junior also averaged 8.4 points per game for the Toreros, and pulled down 7.0 boards per game to rank sixth in the league. The San Diego native had an impressive performance in a win over Holy Cross on December 28, dishing out 13 assists and collecting a program-record 10 steals and just one point short of a triple double with nine points. Rego also notched a double-double in a win over Cal State Bakersfield, scoring 10 points and dishing out 11 assists on December 12.

MORGENSTERN AND CARLSON TO REDSHIRT: San Diego freshman guard Hannah Morgenstern will redshirt the 2006-07 season after injuring her ACL. Morgenstern scored three points in a win against Cal State Northridge, and has made two more appearances this season. Erica Carlson, a 6-4 center from Tucson, Ariz., as yet to appear in a game for the Toreros this season and will make her Torero debut in the 2007-08 season as she recorvers from a shoulder injury.

MEET THE COACH: Head coach Cindy Fisher is entering her second season at the helm of the Toreros program. She was named the program's third head coach on April 19, 2005 after taking over for Kathy Marpe, who stepped down after directing the program for 25 years in 2005. During her first season at USD, the Toreros showed remarkable improvement and were close in majority of their games. The Toreros did record a huge 15 point win over Santa Clara on the road and were close in games against Georgia Tech, Boise State and against Loyola Marymount in the first round of the WCC Championship Tournament. Fisher also helped guide Tiara Harris to a All-WCC selection and Kelly Winther to a All-WCC Freshman team selection. At Wyoming, Fisher's Cowgirl teams showed improvement in each of her five seasons, culminating with an 18-12 mark during the 2002-03 season. The 18 wins were the school's most victories since 1989-90. She also led the Cowgirls to their first postseason appearance since 1989-90 with a trip to the 2003 WNIT, where Wyoming notched a first-round win over Montana before falling in the second round.

TOREROS TABBED SIXTH IN WCC PRESEASON COACHES POLL: The University of San Diego women's basketball team was tabbed to finish sixth in the 2006-07 West Coast Conference preseason poll, as selected by the conference coaches. Loyola Marymount and Pepperdine were chosen as the favorites to claim the WCC women's basketball title with Gonzaga rounding out the top three. Santa Clara checked in at No. 4, Saint Mary's was selected fifth and the Toreros check in at No. 6. Rounding out the conferacne are San Francisco, who was picked seventh, and Portland was picked eighth, respectfully.

GAMETRACKER AVAILABLE: All San Diego women's basketball home games can be followed via Gametracker on the Toreros athletic web site at www.usdtoreros.com. Gametracker is a service of Online College Sports, the official web provider for San Diego athletics, and is a real time update of the action. Selected San Diego road games are also available via Gametracker. To see if Gametracker is available for a game go to San Diego Events at the top-right of the home page. If Gametracker is available there will be a Gametracker link.