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USF Women's Basketball Opens 2006-07 Season Friday at Colorado

Nov. 7, 2006

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USF BEGINS TANYA HAAVE ERA IN COLORADO: USF opens the 31st season in program history Friday, November 10 when it travels to the Rockies for a showdown in Boulder against Colorado in a game televised live in the Bay Area on Fox Sports Net. USF will have a completely new look on the sidelines this season as first year head coach Tanya Haave guides the Dons into battle for the 2006-07 campaign. The game will be a homecoming for Haave, a Tennessee Lady Vol Hall-of-Fame player and one of the most decorated prep players in Colorado history. Haave spent four seasons as an assistant coach in Boulder under coaching legend and mentor Ceal Barry, helping the Buffs to three straight NCAA Tournament berths, including an Elite-Eight appearance in 2002. This is the second time in three years the Dons have opened up in the Rockies after squaring off against Colorado State to christen the 2003-04 season.

Dominique Carter LEADS DONS OFFENSE: Junior guard Dominique Carter enters the 2006-07 season focused on leading USF to the top of the conference standings. A two-time All-West Coast Conference First Team selection, 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 and sophomore. 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 enters the opener at Colorado with 815 career points in 56 career games (14.6). A 2006 WCC All-Tournament Team selection after leading the Dons to a thrilling upset of regular season co-champion Gonzaga, Carter led the team with 19 double-digit scoring nights and surpassed 20 points seven times as a sophomore. The Tracy native matched a career-high with 30 points against Cal Poly (11/29/05).

Nickie Warren LOOKING FOR A STRONG FINISH: Senior forward Nickie Warren is looking to wrap up her final season in the Green and Gold with a flourish. A two-time all-tournament team selection last season, Warren led the Dons in rebounding last season (5.8) and was second in scoring (8.5) and field goal percentage (.486). The Boston College transfer and Bay Area native paced USF with three double-double nights last season, her first on the Hilltop.

NEW FACES ON THE DONS BENCH: Tanya Haave is not the only new face on the USF coaching staff this season. Former Tennessee captain Abby Conklin enters her first season as the top assistant, while former Kansas State All-American and former WNBA player Shanelle Stires also begins her first year in San Francisco. Former San Diego standout Marta Menuez returns for her second season on the Hilltop.

USF ON THE RADIO AND THE NET: USF women's basketball returns to the airwaves and cyberspace for the 2006-2007 season and all games will be 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 courtside. Other features available on USFDons.com include GameTracker, courtesy of CSTV.com with live play-by-play and streaming video of all home games courtesy of Yahoo Broadcast.

GAME #1 - SCOUTING COLORADO: The Buffs enter regular season play with a 2-0 exhibition record, defeating CU Colorado Springs 80-45 (11/3/06) and Colorado School of Mines 73-37 (11/5/06). Against the Mountain Lions, Colorado shot .508 (31-61) from the floor and brought down 46 rebounds. Junior forward Jackie McFarland, Colorado's top returner (17.2 ppg, 9.2 rpg), scored 20 points and pulled down 14 rebounds for the double-double. Sophomore center Kara Richards added 14 points and eight boards. Against the Orediggers, Colorado shot .482 (27-56) from the field and went 6-15 (.400) from 3-point range. Senior guard Jasmina Ilic led the team offensively with 23 points and freshman forward Aija Putnina added 12 points and seven rebounds. Kathy McConnell-Miller (Virginia, '89) enters her second season as head coach for the Buffs, after replacing legendary coach Ceal Barry last year. McConnell-Miller led a young Colorado team to a 9-21 record and an 11th place finish in the Big-12 during the 2005-06 season, and collected her 100th career win.

TEAM COMPARISONS - 2005-2006 SEASON (Final Stats):TeamPPGMarginFG%3-FG%FT%RPGAPGTOPGSPGBPGUSF59.6-5.1.416.257.68436.112.517.97.52.6Colorado66.5-3.2.415.326.74038.613.117.55.52.9

LAST MEETING: USF 52, at Colorado 51 (12/11/96)

SERIES RECORD/STREAK: USF leads 3-1

LAST TIME AGAINST THE DONS: USF women's basketball collected its first ranked win of the season with a thrilling 52-51 road victory against No. 21 Colorado in Boulder. The Dons shot at a .431 (22-51) pace for the game and held the Buffs to a rocky .319 (15-47) pace, including a .261 percentage after the intermission. Andrea Kagie enjoyed an outstanding game for San Francisco, scoring a game-high 17 points on 6-of-7 from the field, including three 3-pointers, while Julie Murdent and Brittany Lindhe added 11 apiece. Jamie Shadian did a nice job running the offense, scoring five points to go along with eight assists. The Dons led 29-27 at the half in the first victory of what would become a nine-game winning streak.

ON THE AIR/ON THE WEB:Radio Broadcast: KUSF (90.3 FM) - San FranciscoInternet Audio: Yes - USFDons.com (Yahoo Broadcast)GameTracker: NoTelevision: Yes - Fox Sports Net (Live)

GAME #2 - SCOUTING WYOMING: The Cowgirls opened their exhibition season with a 77-46 win against Adams State (11/3/06) and host Colorado Christian in a second exhibition match November 10 before facing the Dons to open their regular season. Wyoming went 30-67 (.448) from the floor against Adams State, shot .290 (9-31) from 3-point range and pulled down 44 rebounds. Junior forward Justyna Podziemska led the Cowgirls with 15 points, going 6-14 from the field, and pulled down a game-high six rebounds. Junior forward Hanna Zavecz is Wyoming's top returner (14.4 ppg, 6.7 rpg) and junior guard Jodi Bolerjack (13.3 ppg, 2.4 rpg). Head coach Joe Legerski (Wyoming '79) enters his fourth season with Wyoming. During the 2005-06 season, Legerski directed the Cowgirls to a fifth place finish in the Mountain West (10-6) and a 21-9 overall record - the most wins since the 1989-90 squad went 24-8. The Cowgirls advanced to the second round of the 2006 Postseason WNIT.

TEAM COMPARISONS - 2005-2006 SEASON (Final Stats):TeamPPGMarginFG%3-FG%FT%RPGAPGTOPGSPGBPGUSF59.6-5.1.416.257.68436.112.517.97.52.6Wyoming62.1+6.7 .389.336.71833.7 12.712.68.83.2

LAST MEETING: USF 68, vs. Wyoming 44 at the University of Arizona Classic (12/3/95)

SERIES RECORD/STREAK: USF leads 2-1

LAST TIME AGAINST THE DONS: After a tough 76-75 loss in the Arizona Tournament opener against Wake Forest, USF bounced back for a 68-44 victory against Wyoming in the consolation game. San Francisco led 36-28 at the half and then exploded in the second outscoring the Cowgirls 32-16. USF's defense limited Wyoming to a miserable shooting night, .239 (17-71). Brittany Lindhe poured in a game-high 21 points on 9-of-16 from the field and pulled down 15 rebounds, leading three Dons players in double-figures. Valerie Gillon turned in a 14-point, 11-rebound night, while Renee Demirdjian added 10 for the Dons in what would become the first of a six-game winning streak.

ON THE AIR/ON THE WEB:Radio Broadcast: KUSF (90.3 FM) - San FranciscoInternet Audio: Yes - USFDons.com (Yahoo Broadcast)GameTracker: Yes - USFDons.comLive Streaming Video: No

Dominique Carter SPARKS DONS OFFENSE: Junior guard Dominique Carter enters her third season on the Hilltop focused on leading USF to the top of the West Coast Conference standings. The league's top returning scorer for the second straight season, Carter has scored 815 (14.6) in 56 career games, the highest underclassmen tally since USF Hall-of-Famer Brittany Lindhe (1994-99) recorded 882 (14.5) in 61 games. Last season Carter ranked fourth among league leaders in scoring and field goal percentage (.477). The Tracy native opens the season looking to become the first junior since Lindhe to surpass 1,000 career points in her third season in the Green and Gold and needs 185 points to become the 16th player in program history to surpass the grand mark. Since her arrival, Carter has led the team in scoring 31 times, reached double-digit scoring 40 times with 13 games with 20 or more. Carter owns a pair of 30-point nights - against Cal Poly (11/29/05) and a double-overtime win at Pepperdine (2/3/05). Carter averaged 18.0 points and 9.0 rebounds per game in a pair of exhibition wins against San Francisco State (11/1/06) and Sonoma State (11/4/06).

Nickie Warren PRODUCING FOR THE GREEN AND GOLD: Senior forward Nickie Warren made the most of her first season for USF after sitting out all of 2004-05 after transferring from Boston College. A Bay Area native, Warren made an instant impact, earning all-tournament honors at the 2005 Subway Classic (Minnesota), averaging a team-high 10.5 points. Warren recorded her first career double-double with 14 points and a career-high 11 rebounds against Rider (11/25/05) in the 2005 odwalla Classic, earning all-tournament honors for the second straight week. Warren registered her team-leading third double-double and second straight against Pepperdine (1/6/05) with 18 points and 10 rebounds (seven offensive) and poured in a career-high 21 against Loyola Marymount (1/8/06) to open the West Coast Conference campaign. Warren ranked eighth among league rebound (5.8) leaders and was sixth in field goal percentage at .466 (83-178). Warren reached double-digit scoring 10 times and pulled down 10 or more rebounds in four games. In a pair of exhibition wins against San Francisco State (11/1/06) and Sonoma State (11/4/06), Warren averaged 13.5 points and 9.0 rebounds per game.

Shay Rollins AT THE POINT: Sophomore guard Shay Rollins enjoyed a solid first season for USF and earned West Coast Conference Freshman Team honors after leading the team in assists (2.4) and 3-pointers (23). Rollins scored a season-high 17 points against Cal Poly (11/29/05) and added 10 points and six rebounds against Pepperdine (1/6/05). The Alameda native reached double-digit scoring six times and twice dished out six assists against Bay Area league rivals Santa Clara (1/26/06) and Saint Mary's (1/29/06). Rollins averaged 11.0 points, 4.0 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game in a pair of exhibition wins against San Francisco State (11/1/06) and Sonoma State (11/4/06).

PEACE A GOOD INFLUENCE FOR THE DONS: Junior guard Nykia Peace turned in a solid sophomore season for USF and erupted for her first career double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds in her first start of the year at Long Beach State (12/4/05). Peace set career-highs with 15 points and five steals at Loyola Marymount (2/2/06) and recorded 10 rebounds against the Lions (1/8/06). Peace scored 10.5 points and added 6.0 rebounds in a pair of exhibition wins against San Francisco State (11/1/06) and Sonoma State (11/4/06).

THE 50'S NOT FABULOUS FOR USF: USF's 71-53 loss to Gonzaga (2/25/06) dropped the Dons to 2-14 on the season when the offense managed less than 60 points in a contest. Since the start of the 2004-05 season, San Francisco owns a 3-25 record when stuck in the 50's. Dating to 2000-01, USF owns a 14-60 ledger when scoring less than 60 points. The Dons went 1-7 in 2000-01, 2-4 in 2001-02, 4-13 in 2002-03, 4-11 in 2003-04 and 1-11 in 2004-05. USF's 2003-04 campaign was highlighted by a pair of low scoring wins with a 43-37 decision against NCAA Tournament participant New Mexico and a 59-53 road win at Gonzaga. The 43 points in the victory against the Lobos were the fewest scored in a win since a 32-14 victory against Santa Clara in the 1976-77 season.

TANYA HAAVE BEGINS THE COACHING JOURNEY: First-year head coach Tanya Haave looks for the first victory of her collegiate coaching career as she leads USF into the 2006-07 season. Haave will become the first Dons coach to secure her first career victory while guiding the Green and Gold since USF Legend of the Hilltop Mary Hile-Nepfel collected her first win, while sharing head coaching duties with her husband Bill Nepfel. USF dispatched Weber State for Hile-Nepfel's inaugural victory during the 1987-88 season. Jan Ternyik (1980-82) is the only coach in USF women's basketball history to earn a win in her debut after taking an 82-32 decision against Lethbridge in the inaugural game of 1980-81 - Hile-Nepfel's senior All-American season.

Lisa Olden READY FOR STRONG JUNIOR SEASON: Junior center Lisa Olden showed flashes of brilliance as a sophomore in the Green and Gold and now looks for her most consistent season. Olden earned all-tournament honors at the odwalla Classic, averaging 12 points and 5.5 rebounds. Olden scored 15 points and pulled down a career-high nine rebounds off the bench against No. 22 Oklahoma (11/26/05) and did a strong job guarding Sooners' All-American Courtney Paris. Olden scored 10 points and pulled down eight rebounds in a win against Saint Mary's (1/27/05) and turned in a career-high 17 points at Loyola Marymount (2/5/05). Olden averaged 7.5 points and 2.5 rebounds in a pair of exhibition wins against San Francisco State (11/1/06) and Sonoma State (11/4/06).

KeLicia Shorts TALLIES 364TH CAREER BLOCK: Senior center KeLicia Shorts recorded the 364th block of her career at Gonzaga (3/2/06) in the first round of the 2006 West Coast Conference Tournament. A four-year middle blocker on the Dons volleyball squad, Shorts finished her volleyball career with 355 blocks - good for fifth place in the career record books. A 2005 All-West Coast Conference Honorable Mention selection, Shorts joined the women's basketball team prior to league play and enjoyed the best game of her hoops career at Santa Clara (2/17/06) with six points, a team-high 10 rebounds and a blocked shots in 22 minutes. In a pair of exhibition wins against San Francisco State (11/1/06) and Sonoma State (11/4/06), Shorts averaged 2.0 points and 4.5 rebounds per game.

DONS FRESHMEN LOOKING TO CONTRIBUTE: Four USF freshmen look forward to their first action in the Green and Gold this weekend. The Dons boast a highly decorated group of first year players to the Hilltop and three of the four earned a total of five all-state first team selections, seven league player of the year honors and three McDonald's All-America nominations. Freshman forward Ashley Guerra (San Jose, CA) comes to the Hilltop after four standout seasons at perennial Bay Area prep power Archbishop Mitty, averaging 10.3 points and 7.0 rebounds per game for the Monarchs as a senior. Freshman guard Heidi Heintz (Spokane, WA) was a two-time All-Greater Spokane League selection at Central Valley and will bolster the Dons backcourt.Freshman guard Katie Mihalco (Englewood, CO) capped her outstanding prep career with a McDonald's All-America nomination after averaging 13.7 points, 4.1 assists and 3.1 steals as a senior at Regis Jesuit. Randi Richardson (Arlington, WA), captured three first team all-state selections and was named Everett Herald's Player of the Year, averaging 18.3 points, 6.5 rebounds and 6.0 assists as a senior at Arlington High School.

USF VERSUS THE TOP-25: USF posted an 0-2 record against top-25 opponents in 2005-06. The Dons dropped a tough 53-51 loss to No. 22 Oklahoma (11/26/05) in the title game of the odwalla Classic, a week after falling 80-62 at No. 17 Minnesota in the first round of the 2005 Subway Classic. San Francisco played a pair of top-25 opponents in 2004-05, falling at No. 25 New Mexico (63-52) and fell at home to No. 2 Stanford (80-51). USF's last victory against a top-25 opponent came with a 66-60 victory against No. 19 Oregon (1/2/00) at War Memorial Gym.

2006-07 EXHIBITION RECAPS: San Francisco posted a 2-0 record In a pair of exhibition wins against San Francisco State (11/1/06) and Sonoma State (11/4/06), averaging 80.5 points per game on .535 shooting, while limiting its opponents to 49.5 points on .296 from the floor.

USF DEF. SAN FRANCISCO STATE 91-61: USF women's basketball opened the 2006-07 exhibition season with a 91-61 victory against cross-town rival San Francisco State Wednesday night at War Memorial Gym. Junior guard Dominique Carter and sophomore guard Shay Rollins led five Dons in double-figure scoring. San Francisco shot at a remarkable .565 (35-62) from the field and held the Gators to .340 (18-53) shooting.Carter pulled down 10 rebounds for a double-double, while senior forward Nickie Warren added 11 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Rollins was just one assist shy of a rare double-double, while freshman guard Katie Mihalco scored 11 points off the bench in 18 minutes. Junior post player Lisa Olden scored seven points, while senior center Breann Sitton added six in the paint. USF built a 46-30 lead at the half and continued to increase the pressure at both ends in the second half, converting on .593 (16-27) from the floor. The Dons defense was also tough, forcing 27 turnovers, and allowed San Francisco State to convert at just a .296 (8-27) from the field in the second. As a team, San Francisco dished out 24 assists and eight players chipped in at least one, while three Dons had three or more, led by Rollins.

USF DEF. SONOMA STATE 70-38: USF women's basketball dispatched Sonoma State in convincing fashion with a 70-38 exhibition victory Saturday night at War Memorial Gym. The Dons limited the Seawolves to just 12 first half points and shot a .507 (34-67) clip for the game in the nightcap of a doubleheader with the USF volleyball team.Junior guard Dominique Carter led all scores with 20 points and eight rebounds in 26 minutes, while senior forward Nickie Warren scored 16 points to go along with seven boards and a blocked shot. Nine Dons recorded at least two points in the contest and everyone dressed played in the contest for first-year head coach Tanya Haave. No Sonoma State player reached double-digit scoring and as a team the Seawolves connected at a .255 (14-55) clip and managed just four field goals in 24 attempts in the first half.

USF IN SEASON OPENERS: San Francisco has posted a 13-17 record in season openers in its 30 year history. The Dons have dropped their last two lid-lifters, falling 80-62 at No. 17 Minnesota (11/19/05) and a 72-64 setback at Colorado State (11/19/04). USF's last opening win came in a convincing 72-46 victory against South Carolina State (11/21/03). After starting the decade with a 105-51 dismantling UC Riverside (11/19/00), the Dons have managed just one win in their last five season debuts.