Feb. 16, 2007
IN A NUTSHELL: Fresh off claiming their record-setting 20th win of the season, the University of San Diego women's basketball team (20-5, 9-2 WCC) will look to conclude their home schedule with a win over Saint Mary's College on Saturday at 2 p.m. inside the friendly confines of the Jenny Craig Pavilion. If USD defeats SMC on Saturday, they will clinch at least a No. 2 seed in the WCC Tournament, with the possibility of winning the conference crown next week with games at Gonzaga and Portland.
LAST TIME OUT: Freshman Morgan Henderson goes a perfect 6-for-6 from the field, 1-for-1 from the three-point line and 2-for-2 from the charity stripe to score a game-high 15 points in helping lead the University of San Diego women's basketball team to its 20th win of the season, with a 77-52 win over Santa Clara University Thursday evening in a West Coast Conference game at the Jenny Craig Pavilion. With the win, the Toreros improve to 20-5 overall, move to 9-2 in the WCC, have set another program record with its 20th win and have swept the Broncos for the first time since the 1989-90 season. With the loss, the Broncos fall to 13-13 overall and 5-6 in the WCC. With her game-high 15 points, just one shy of her career-high, Henderson has now scored at least 15 points in three consecutive games. Amber Sprague was the second of five Toreros in double figures with 12 points and a game-high nine rebounds. Both Kelly Winther and Ashley Voisinet had 11 points and Sabine Loewe was the final USD player in double figures with 10 points and seven rebounds. Amanda Rego recorded eight rebounds and four assists in the win. As a team, the Toreros shot 48 percent from the field, compared to that of SCU who shot 34 percent, and the Toreros out rebounded the Broncos 52-14. The early going of the game was even with the Toreros lead not getting larger then two, until the game was knotted at 8-8. Then the Toreros exploded on a 15-2 run sparked by Loewe three-point play and capped by a Sprague lay-up to move the score to 23-10. The Toreros would build their lead up to as many as 16 on a pair of Voisinet free-throws with 3:50 remaining. But the Broncos would close out the half on a 7-2 run to pull within 11 going into the break. In the second half, the Toreros kept the pedal to the medal and quickly built their lead up to 17 on a Winther lay-up and never looked back despite Santa Clara getting the deficit down to 10 on a couple of occasions. But in the end, USD's defense proved to be too strong as they cruised their way to a 25-point win.
SCOUTING THE GAELS: Saint Mary's enters the game with a 12-12 overall record and a 6-5 mark in the WCC after picking up a win over the University of San Francisco this past Thursday. The Gaels hold the all-time series lead at 29-19, but the Toreros did pick up the win in the first meeting this season in Moraga, 85-52. The Gales are led offensively by Jontelle Smith, who has a team-best 12.1 points per game average. The only other Saint Mary's player averaging double figures is Sheridan Arredondo, who is averaging 10.1 points per game. The Gaels are under the direction of first-year head coach Paul Thomas.NEW PROGRAM RECORD: The University of San Diego has set a new program record for single-season victories with 20, thanks to the win over Santa Clara 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 Santa Clara on Thursday, the Toreros recorded their first season sweep over the Broncos since the 1989-90 season. Should USD defeat Saint Mary's, it will mark the first time since the 2003-04 season that this has occurred.
HENDERSON HAS MAKES IT THREE IN A ROW: Freshman forward Morgan Henderson has now recorded at least 15 points in the past three consecutive games for the Toreros, including a career-high 16 points in the win over Loyola Marymount last week. In Thursday's win over Santa Clara, Henderson was perfect from the field as she went 6-for-6 from the floor, 1-1 from the three-point line and 2-2 from the charity stripe to score a game-high 15 points. Henderson also recorded 15 points in the heartbreaking one-point loss to Pepperdine this past Saturday in Malibu. On the season, Henderson is averaging 8.0 points per game and in WCC action the freshman from Leawood, Kan. is the third leading scorer on the Toreros' roster with a 9.9 ppg average.
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.
MANGRUM LOOKING SOLID: Sophomore forward Kaila Mangrum had her most productive game in Thursday's win over Santa Clara. Mangrum scored a season-high seven points and pulled down eight rebounds in only nine minutes on the floor. On the season, Mangrum is averaging 0.9 points per game and 1.7 rebounds per game.
REGO AND THE ASSIST: Junior point guard Amanda Rego has already become the single-season assists leader at USD this season with her 192 assists, but with her four assists this Thursday, she has now moved into sixth place in the West Coast Conference single-game assists. Rego is also still leading the nation in assists per game at 7.7. Rego has also moved into fifth-all-time in career assists at 349. Rego is leading the WCC in steals at 2.72 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 13-3, 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 605-543 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 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