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WCC Women's Basketball Weekly Notes

Jan. 26, 2010

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CONFERENCE PLAY CONTINUES THIS WEEK
The third week of conference play concluded with Gonzaga taking sole possession of first place with a win over Pepperdine as the two were tied atop the standings going into the game. In other action, a couple of overtime games occurred as Portland outlasted Pepperdine and Saint Mary's edged out San Diego. Santa Clara also earned its first conference victory of the season with a win over San Francisco.

Gonzaga is now receiving its most votes ever with 53 in the AP Poll, while also receiving 15 in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE

THURSDAY, JANUARY 28
TEAMS LOCATION
TIME
RECAP
Santa Clara at Gonzaga Spokane, WA
6:00 PM
Loyola Marymount at San Diego San Diego, CA
7:00 PM
Pepperdine at Saint Mary's Moraga, CA
7:00 PM
San Francisco at Portland Portland, OR
7:00 PM
SATURDAY, JANUARY 30
TEAMS LOCATION
TIME
RECAP
San Francisco at Gonzaga Spokane, WA
2:00 PM
Pepperdine at San Diego San Diego, CA
2:00 PM
Loyola Marymount at Saint Mary's Moraga, CA
2:00 PM
Santa Clara at Portland Portland, OR
2:00 PM

AROUND THE WCC

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: Courtney Vandersloot, GON
Vandersloot helped Gonzaga stay perfect in the WCC, and improve its winning streak to seven, with two road wins. She averaged 20.5 points, 12.0 assists, 5.5 rebounds and 1.5 steals over the two games, while shooting 55.6 percent (15-of-27) from the floor, including 5.0.0 percent (5-of-10) on 3-pointers and was 85.7 percent (6-of-7) at the free throw line. She currently leads the NCAA in assists (9.3) and is second in steals (3.9).

Also nominated: Natalie Day, POR; Ashlee Smith, SMC; Meagan Fulps, SCU

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


WCC TEAM NOTES

SCHOOL TEAM NOTES

Overall Record: 16-4
WCC Record: 5-0
  • Gonzaga went undefeated last week, beating Pepperdine, 107-64, and Loyola Marymount, 91-77.

  • JR Courtney Vandersloot had a huge win en route to earning WCC Player of the Week honors. She averaged 20.5 points, 12.0 assists, 5.5 rebounds, and 1.5 steals over the two games, including 15 assists and a career-high four three-pointers against the Lions. She has now had seven games with 10+ assists.

  • Vandersloot is now the program's all-time leader in assists with 616 in her career and she also moved up to the 12th spot on the all-time scoring list with 1,156 career points.

  • The 107 points scored against Pepperdine marked the most scored by an opponent at Firestone Fieldhouse. SR Heather Bowman added 26 points on 11-of-15 shooting.

  • The Zags stay home this week to host Santa Clara (1/28) and San Francisco (1/30).
  • Overall Record: 9-10
    WCC Record: 2-3
  • LMU went winless last week, falling to Portland, 94-91, and Gonzaga, 91-77.

  • SO Alex Cowling led all scorers against Portland, going for 22 points on 8-of-15 shooting, while pulling down nine rebounds. She has been on a tear over her last five games, averaging 20.0 points on 54.9 percent shooting.

  • JR Renahy Young averaged 15.0 points and 5.5 assists in the two games, while shooting 50.0 percent. She tied her season-high with seven assists against the Pilots.

  • After coming into the week without scoring in double figures all season, FR Monica DeAngelis averaged 10.0 points over the week and hit three three-pointers in each game.

  • The Lions are on the road this week at San Diego (1/28) and Saint Mary's (1/30).
  • Overall Record: 12-7
    WCC Record: 3-2
  • Pepperdine went winless last week, falling to Gonzaga, 107-64, and Portland in overtime, 82-76.

  • In the game against Portland, SO Katie Menton had a career game with highs of 22 points and six made three-pointers, while also grabbing five boards.

  • SR Miranda Ayim just missed out on a double-double against the Pilots with 17 points and eight rebounds. Over her last four games, she is averaging 18.0 points, while shooting at a 53.3 percent clip.

  • Ayim is currently ranked fifth in the league in scoring (15.2), sixth in rebounding (6.6), and second in blocks (40).

  • Pepperdine is on the road this week at Saint Mary's (1/28) and San Diego (1/30).
  • Overall Record: 13-7
    WCC Record: 2-3
  • Portland went undefeated last week, beating Loyola Marymount, 94-91, before edging out Pepperdine in overtime, 82-76.

  • SO Alexis Gannis posted a double-double against the Lions, going for 19 points and a game-high 11 rebounds leading five Pilots in double-figures.

  • SO Natalie Day averaged 23.0 points and 4.0 rebounds in the two games, while shooting an impressive 70.8 percent from the field and hitting six of nine from beyond the arc.

  • After going for double-figures in just five games this season, SO Rezina Teclemariam has scored in double-figures in three straight, averaging 14.6 points on 52.2 percent shooting.

  • Portland is at home this week to host San Francisco (1/28) and Santa Clara (1/30).
  • Overall Record: 13-7
    WCC Record: 4-1
  • Saint Mary's had just one game last week, defeating San Diego in overtime, 69-66.

  • With just seven seconds remaining, SO Jasmine Smith made a layup to send the game into overtime. She finished with 11 points and five rebounds.

  • SR Jontelle Smith led all scorers with 20 points and also hit four from beyond the arc. She also hit a pair of free throws with four seconds left in overtime to secure the win.

  • JR Louella Tomlinson posted her league-leading 12th double-double of the season with 17 points and 12 rebounds. She also added a career-high seven assists and had four blocks. She is now just 28 blocks away from becoming the NCAA's all-time leader.

  • The Gaels are at home this week to host Pepperdine (1/28) and Loyola Marymount (1/30).
  • Overall Record: 11-8
    WCC Record: 3-2
  • San Diego had just one game last week, falling in overtime to Saint Mary's, 69-66.

  • SO Dominque Conners tied the team-high with 14 points, while tying her career-high with seven steals, which she set in just the first game of the year this season, and grabbing seven rebounds. She is ranked second in the league in steals, nabbing 3.1 per game.

  • SR Morgan Henderson went 3-for-5 from beyond the arc to total 13 points while also bringing down six rebounds.

  • SO Morgan Woodrow was the only other Torero in double figures with 14 points. During conference play, she is second in the league from downtown, hitting at a .538 clip.

  • The Toreros are at home this week to host Loyola Marymount (1/28) and Pepperdine (1/30).
  • Overall Record: 4-18
    WCC Record: 0-5
  • San Francisco had just one game last week, falling to cross-town rival Santa Clara, 54-47.

  • SO Rheina Ale was the only Don in double-figures, finishing with 11 points and hitting three from beyond the arc. Over her last three games, she is averaging 14.0 points and 6.7 rebounds a game.

  • SO Vania Singleterry just missed out on a double-double, posting eight points and eight rebounds. She is now averaging 8.3 rebounds a game over her last three after coming into that span averaging just. 3.8.

  • Ale is third in the WCC in three-pointers (46), while JR Donnisha Taylor is third in rebounds (163).

  • San Francisco is on the road this week at Portland (1/28) and Gonzaga (1/30).
  • Overall Record: 3-17
    WCC Record: 1-4
  • Santa Clara had just one game last week, defeating cross-town rival San Francisco, 54-47.

  • FR Meagan Fulps led all scorers with 18 points and also grabbed five rebounds. She is currently leading all freshmen in the conference in scoring at 11.8 points per game.

  • JR Lena Gipson just missed out on a double-double with eight points and 10 rebounds. She has now had 505 career rebounds in just her second season with the Broncos and is just 30 away from entering the school's all-time top 10 list.

  • Gipson leads the league in total rebounds with 198, while SO Alyssa Shoji ranks first in three-pointers with 51, just seven away from entering the school's all-time single season list.

  • Santa Clara is on the road this week at Gonzaga (1/28) and Portland (1/30).