Feb. 12, 2007
IN A NUTSHELL: The University of San Diego women's basketball team (19-5, 8-2 WCC) will look to capture their 20th win of the season as the close out their home portion of the schedule this week. On Thursday, the Toreros will host Santa Clara University in a 7 p.m. game inside the friendly confines of the Jenny Craig Pavilion. On Saturday, the Toreros will then close out the home schedule with Saint Mary's coming to town for a 2 p.m. showdown.
LAST TIME OUT: Morgan Henderson's last second three-point shot rimed out at the buzzer as the University of San Diego women's basketball team (19-5, 8-2 WCC) fell, 51-50, to Pepperdine University (12-14, 5-6 WCC) Saturday afternoon in a West Coast Conference game at the Firestone Fieldhouse. Teiosha George was fouled by Amanda Rego with 14 seconds remaining and the Waves clinging onto a one-point lead. George missed both free-throws and Henderson came down with the rebound and Rego quickly pushed the ball up the floor. The Waves then collapsed three players on Rego four feet from the basket. Rego found the wide-open Henderson and passed her the ball. Henderson, with no hesitation, launched the shot only to have it rim out at the buzzer to allow the Waves to escape with the win. Henderson led all scorers with 15 points, while also pulling down 10 rebounds for her first collegiate double-double. Rego was the only other San Diego player in double-figures with 10 points and six rebounds. Amber Sprague was solid for the Toreros on the glass as she pulled down a game-high 11 rebounds. As a team, the Toreros shot 30 percent from the floor, compared to that of the Waves who shot 37 percent from the floor.
SENIORS TO BE HONORED: USD's two seniors, Sabine Loewe and Ashley Voisinet, will be honored prior to top-off on Saturday. Both ladies have played their entire four-year career in a Toreros uniform and are making huge contributions to the team this season as both have been starters for the 19-5 Toreros.
SCOUTING THE BRONCOS: Santa Clara enters the week with a 13-12 overall record and a 5-5 mark in the WCC after splitting a pair of games this past week. SCU picked up a win over Portland before falling to Gonzaga on Sunday. The Broncos hold the all-time series edge at 29-19, but the Toreros did capture the first meeting of the season between the two in Santa Clara. SCU is led offensively by Chandice Cronk, who is averaging a team-leading 17.2 points per game. Jen Gottschalk is the next leading scorer for the Broncos with 11.5 ppg and the only other Bronco in double figures is Ashley Grahm, who is averaging 10.7 ppg.
NEW PROGRAM RECORD: The University of San Diego has set a new program record for single-season victories with 19, thanks to the win over Loyola Marymout University this past Thursday. The previous record of 17 wins happened twice, once during the 1989-90 season and the other in the 1999-2000 season. The 99-00 team was the last USD women's basketball team to make it into the postseason, as they won the conference tournament and earned the WCC's automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament.
SEASON SWEEPS: With the win over Loyola Marymount on Thursday, the Toreros recorded their first season sweep over the Lions since the 1997-98 season. Should USD defeat Santa Clara on Thursday, it will be the first time since the 1989-90 season that the Toreros have swept the Broncos. Should USD defeat Saint Mary's, it will mark the first time since the 2003-04 season that this has occurred.
HENDERSON HAS A SOLID WEEK: Freshman forward Morgan Henderson set three more career-highs in Thursday's win over Loyola Marymount. Henderson recorded a career-high 16 points, topping her previous career-high of 15 she achieved against Gonzaga. The freshman from Leawood, Kan. also set a career-high in blocks with two and three-pointers made in a game with four. On Saturday, Henderson then followed that performance with her first collegiate double-double with 15 points and a career-high 10 rebounds. On the season, Henderson is averaging 7.7 points per game and is the team's second best three-point shooter with 21 trey's made.
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.
TOREROS SLAP ON THE D: All season long, the Toreros have been playing solid defense, which has been one of the key's to the successful turnaround from 9-19 to 19-5. USD's scoring defense, which only allowed 58.1 points per game, is currently ranked No. 44 in the nation in scoring defense. This is the highest among all West Coast Conference schools.
REGO AND THE ASSIST: Junior point guard Amanda Rego has already become the single-season assists leader at USD this season with her 187 assists, but with her seven assists this past week, she has now moved into a tie for seventh in the West Coast Conference single-game assists with Jamie Shadian of San Francisco. Rego is also still leading the nation in assists per game at 7.9. Rego has also moved into fifth-all-time in career assists at 337. Rego is leading the WCC in steals at 2.75 per game. Rego has also set the new USD single-game record for assists with 14, and she has recorded double digit assists in 11 games this season.
SPRAGUE CONTINUES HOT PLAY: Sophomore forward Amber Sprague continues her hot play for the Toreros. After sitting out all of last season with injuries, the San Diego native has come back in dominating fashion. This past week, Sprague posted her sixth double-double of the season against Loyola Marymount with her 10 points and 11 rebound performance. On the season, Sprague is leading the team with a 14.2 points per game average and 8.1 rebounds per game.
HOME SWEET HOME: After playing the last three games on the road, USD finally gets to return to the friendly confines of the Jenny Craig Pavilion this week. San Diego is now 11-3, while playing on their home floor this season. The Toreros are playing superbly well at the JCP, as they hit 41 percent of their field goals, are out rebounding their opponents 553-529 and are holding opponents to 56 points per game, while they scorch the opposition with 59 points per game. USD will look to continue their hot play at home this week as they host Santa Clara and Saint Mary's.
A LOOK AHEAD: The Toreros will play their final regular-season games on the road next week as they travel to the Pacific Northwest to play Portland and Gonzaga. The following week, USD will return to Portland for the WCC Championship tournament.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS: Several USD players, as well as the team itself, hold lofty positions in the conference statistics. Amanda Rego leads the WCC in both assists per game (7.9) , steals per game (2.75) and is second in assists to turnover ration at 2.00. Amber Sprague is fourth in the WCC in points per game at 14.2, second in blocked shots at 2.04 per game and leading the WCC in rebounds per game at 8.1. Sabine Loewe is second in field goal percentage at .521. As a team, the Toreros are leading the conference in scoring defense, just allowing 58.1 points per game, first in steals at 9.83 per game and are third in assists per game at 14.54. USD is leading the WCC in field goal percentage at .393 as and is second in team three-point field goal percentage at .335.
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