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USF Takes on No. 1 Seed Gonzaga in 2007 WCC Tournament Semifinals Saturday

March 2, 2007

NO. 7 USF ADVANCES TO WCC TOURNAMENT SEMIFINALS: San Francisco played its best game of the season at the best possible time, dispatching No. 2 seed San Diego 80-69 in the first round of the 2007 West Coast Conference Tournament. With the win, the Dons have posted back-to-back opening round upsets as the No. 7 seed, the first coming last season at defending regular season champion Gonzaga in Spokane - USF's semifinal opponent Saturday afternoon at the Chiles Center. No. 1 Gonzaga, the WCC regular season champion for the third straight season, dispatched No. 8 Portland 68-55. The Bulldogs swept the regular season series against the Dons, posting a 58-53 decision at War Memorial Gym (1/25/07) and a dominating 57-37 victory a week ago in Spokane in the 2007 regular season finale. USF owns a 2-0 record against Gonzaga in the conference showcase. The Dons beat the Zags last season 75-67 (3/2/06) and also took a 86-49 victory (2/27/97) en route to their third straight WCC Tournament title.

Dominique Carter PASSES 1,200 CAREER POINTS: A three-time All-West Coast Conference First Team selection, junior guard Dominique Carter is one of the most dynamic scorers in the league and is only the second player in program history to earn first team selection as a freshman, sophomore and junior. USF Hall-of-Famer Brittany Lindhe (1994-99) was the first and is the only four-time first team all-league pick in WCC history. Carter surpassed 1,000 career points at Hawaii (12/29/06) and enters the 2007 WCC Tournament semifinals against Gonzaga with 1,251 career points in 86 career games (14.5). A 2006 WCC All-Tournament Team selection, Carter leads USF in scoring (14.5) and is second in field goal percentage (.473). The Tracy native owns 20 career 20-point games with seven this season, the last a 23-point effort Thursday against San Diego (3/1/07).

CARTER EIGHTH ON USF CAREER SCORING CHART: Junior guard Dominique Carter enters the semifinals of the 2007 West Coast Conference Tournament with 1,251 points, good for eighth place on the USF career scoring chart, after passing USF Legend of the Hilltop Valerie Gillon (1993-96 - 1,188) and Melinda Harrison (1985-90 - 1,190) against Santa Clara (2/18/07). Next up on the list is 1987 WCC Player of the Year Teri Hunt (1984-87), who scored 1,255. One of the league's most prolific scorers, Carter ranks fifth in Dons career scoring at 14.5 points per game.

THREE DONS EARN 2007 ALL-WCC ACCOLADES: Junior guard Dominique Carter headlines three USF players named to the 2007 All-West Coast Conference Team as announced by the league office. Carter is the 18th player in league history to earn three first team selections and first since three players accomplished the feat in 2002. Carter ranked fifth in scoring (14.2), second in field goal percentage (.474) and 10th in free throw percentage (.767) among 2007 WCC regular season leaders. Sophomore guard Shay Rollins earned All-WCC Honorable Mention selection after ranking second on the team in scoring (10.3) and assists (2.6), while freshman guard Heidi Heintz was named to the WCC Freshman Team after averaging 7.4 points and 4.1 rebounds during league play.

USF ON THE RADIO AND THE NET: USF women's basketball returns to the airwaves and cyberspace for the 2006-2007 season with all games available live at USFDons.com and at KUSF 90.3 FM. Join George Devine for the play-by-play in his 11th year behind the microphone.

GAME #31 - West Coast Conference Tournament - Semifinals SCOUTING GONZAGA: The league-leading Bulldogs (22-9, 13-1 WCC) have won seven straight and 17 of 18 and have lost just once in 2007 (Pepperdine, 2/1). Gonzaga made short work of West Coast Conference foes, out-scoring its opponents 70.1-57.9 per game and pounded San Francisco (57-37) last Saturday in the 2007 regular season finale at the McCarthey Athletic Center. The Zags kept the foot on the accelerator in the opening round of the 2007 WCC Tournament downing No. 8 Portland 68-55 Thursday afternoon in the Chiles Center. On the season, the Zags average 69.6 points on .419 from the field hit at a .336 pace from long distance. Senior forward Stephanie Hawk captured 2007 WCC co-Player of the Year honors and leads the way at 14.8 points per game to go along with a team-high 7.9 rebounds and a remarkable 2.2 blocked shots. Junior guard Michelle Elliott adds 9.7 points, while 2007 WCC Newcomer of the Year freshman forward Heather Bowman chips in with 13.1 points and 6.1 rebounds. A three-time West Coast Conference Coach of the Year, Kelly Graves is in his seventh season in Spokane and guided his club to back-to-back-to-back WCC regular season titles. Graves owns a 184-118 overall record in his 10th season and is 118-92 at the Bulldog helm.

LAST FIVE MEETINGS: at GON 57, USF 37 (2/24/07); GON 58, at USF 53 (1/25/07); USF def. GON 75-67, WCC Tournament First Round (3/3/06); GON 71, at USF 53 (2/25/06); at GON 54, USF 42 (1/21/06)

SERIES RECORD/STREAK: USF leads 25-17/Gonzaga won 2

WCC TOURNAMENT SERIES RECORD: USF leads 2-0

WCC TOURNAMENT SERIES RESULT: No. 7 USF 75, No. 2 GON 67 (3/2/06); No. 2 USF 86, No. 7 GON 49 (2/27/97)

NO. 7 USF vs. NO. 1 GONZAGA GAME INFORMATIONON THE AIR/ON THE WEB:Radio Broadcast: KUSF (90.3 FM) - San FranciscoRadio Talent: George Devine (PBP)Internet Audio: Yes - USFDons.com (Yahoo Broadcast)GameTracker: Yes - USFDons.com

LAST TIME AGAINST USF IN THe WCC TOURNAMENT: USF women's basketball broke through for its finest effort of the season and powered its way to a 75-67 victory against Gonzaga in the opening round of the 2006 West Coast Conference Tournament Thursday night in the McCarthey Athletic Center. The No. 7 Dons (9-19) pulled off the improbable upset against the No.2 seeded and tournament host Bulldogs (16-14), who had not lost a home game to a league opponent since USF dispatched them 59-53 in the last game played in the Martin Centre. San Francisco shot at a blistering .556 (25-45) pace from the field for the game, including .667 (4-6) from long distance. Sophomore guards Dominique Carter and LaShaunte Stephens each scored a game-high 21 points to lead the Dons. After combining for just 17 points in two games against Gonzaga, the pair combined for 42 points when it mattered most. Freshman guard Shay Rollins added 10 points.

2007 WEST COAST CONFERENCE TOURNAMENT NOTES

DONS MAKE MAGIC AS THE NO. 7 SEED... AGAIN: USF's 80-69 win against No. 2 seed San Diego on Thursday marked only the fourth time overall in tournament history the No.7 seed has dispatched No. 2. The Dons have now accomplished the feat twice in back-to-back seasons, following a 75-67 victory at Gonzaga in the 2006 conference showcase. Prior to the Dons improbable opening round victories, Portland downed Santa Clara 85-65 in 2001.

CARTER FIVE POINTS SHY OF SEVENTH PLACE ON USF CAREER SCORING LIST: Junior guard Dominique Carter enters Saturday's West Coast Conference Tournament semifinal game against Gonzaga with 1,251 points and needs just five for sole possession of seventh place on the USF career scoring charts. USF Hall-of-Famer Teri Hunt (1984-87), the 1987 WCC Player of the Year, occupies seventh with 1,255.

CARTER PICKING UP THE PACE DURING WCC TOURNAMENT: Junior guard Dominique Carter turned in her third straight 20-point game in the West Coast Conference Tournament with 23 points against San Diego (3/1/07). Carter scored 22 against Santa Clara in the 2006 WCC Semifinals and 21 in the Dons upset of No. 2 seed and tournament host Gonzaga, good for a 22.0 points per game scoring average in her last three postseason contests.

DONS IMPROVE TO 14-10 IN WCC TOURNAMENT PLAY: USF's 80-69 win against No. 2 San Diego upped the Dons overall West Coast Conference Tournament record to 14-10 overall. Only Santa Clara (19-13) and Pepperdine (17-12) have won more games in the conference showcase. San Francisco owns the longest winning streak in tournament action, capturing nine straight from 1995-97 en route to an unprecedented three consecutive league tournament titles.

TWENTIETH 20-POINT NIGHT FOR CARTER AGAINST TOREROS: Junior guard Dominique Carter scored a team-high 23 points in USF's opening round upset 80-69 upset of No. 2 San Diego. It was the 20th time Carter has turned in a 20-point night in her standout career on the Hilltop with seven this season.

QUOTING TANYA HAAVE - ON THE SAN DIEGO WIN: "It was a great team victory. I'm real proud of our team. I feel like we came out with a lot of focus. Shooting the ball the way we did in the first half really helped us. We really withstood every challenge that they gave us."

On What Was Different Today Versus Their First Two Meetings With USD: "We learned a lot from those games and we were able to learn to withstand challenges from people who always come back at us as. We knew they'd come back at us, but we didn't withstand it as well as we did now. We clearly learned how to withstand challenges from teams and worry more about playing our game and playing the way we're supposed to play."