Dec. 18, 2007
IN A NUTSHELL: The University of San Diego women's basketball team (6-4) will hit the road this week for a non-conference game against Cal State Fullerton. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. inside of Titan Gym.
LAST TIME OUT: Three Toreros scored in double figures paced by junior center Amber Sprague's game-high 19, to help lead the University of San Diego women's basketball team to a 68-53 win over the visiting University of the Pacific Saturday afternoon in a non-conference game at USD's Jenny Craig Pavilion. With the win, the Toreros improve to 6-4 overall and have won back-to-back games for the second time this season. With the loss, the Tigers fall to 3-7 overall and have now dropped six straight games. Sprague led all players with her 19 points on 9-for-19 shooting from the floor to go along with her game-high 13 rebounds to post the game's only double-double. Amanda Rego was the next Torero in double figures as she had 15 points to go along with a game-high eight assists and Kiva Herman was the final USD player in double figures as she had 11 points on 4-for-12 shooting from the floor. As a team, USD shot 39 percent from the field and out rebounded the Tigers 50-35. Sam Child hit back-to-back jumpers to ignite a 10-0 Toreros run right out of the gates as USD quickly took control of the game. After the Tigers went on a 5-2 run, San Diego responded with a Sprague lay-up that sparked a 5-2 USD run to again give USD back a double-digit lead at 17-7 with 8:06 remaining in the first half. USD would eventually build their lead up to as many as 11 in the first half on a Sprague jumper with 4:21 remaining to give the Toreros a 21-10 advantage. The Toreros would then go into the break with a seven-point lead at 25-18. In the second half, USD would remain in control of things in the early going as the team sea sawed back and forth between a 6-9 point lead for the first several minutes. After the Tigers pulled back to within five at 35-30 with 12:58 remaining, a Kaila Mangrum lay-up ignited a 4-1 Torero run to again give USD back a 11-point lead at 41-30 with just 11:19 remaining. The two teams then began to trade basket-for-basket over the next several minutes until the score was 51-41 in favor of the Toreros with 5:13 remaining. The Toreros then put together a 5-0 run to give them a 15-point cushion, that they would not look back on as they cruised their way to a 68-53 win. For the Tigers, Kelsey Lavender led the team with 12 points on 4-for-10 shooting from the floor. As a team, the Tigers were held to a 32 percent shooting from the field.
REMEMBER THE TITANS? Cal State Fullerton enters the week with a 1-7 overall after dropping its sixth straight contest this past week to the University of Nevada, Reno. The Toreros and Titans have met on 14 prior occasions with the series even at seven games a piece. USD did claim last years match-up 47-36 in San Diego. The Titans are led by junior forward Toni Thomas, who has a team-leading 19.0 points per game average to go along with a 6.8 rebounds per game average. Freshman guard Lauren Chow is the only other Titan averaging double figures, as she has a 14.5 ppg average to go along with a team-best 31 assists on the season. The Titans are under the direction of 10th-year head coach Dr. Maryalyce Jeremiah. During her tenure at Fullerton, Jeremiah has posted an overall record of 141-157.
DOING THE DISHES: Senior point guard Amanda Rego continues to dish out the assists at a high rate, currently averaging 7.9 assists per game. The defending NCAA Assist leader is leading the WCC in assists and currently sits tied for third nationally. For her career, Rego still sits in second all-time with 466, trailing Lori Morris' (1980-84) record of 480. Rego is also the all-time leader in career steals with 237
ANOTHER SORAGUE DOUBLE-DOUBLE: Junior center Amber Sprague recorded the game's lone double-double this past Saturday as she poured in a game-high 19 points and pulled down a game-high 13 rebounds to post her fourth double-double of the season. On the season, Sprague is the team's leading scorer with an average of 16.4 points per game and is also the team's leading rebounder with an average of 9.0 boards per game.
FRIDAY'S GAME TO HAVE A LIVE AUDIO BROADCAST: Friday's game against Cal State Fullerton will be broadcast live on usdtoreros.com. USD's Assistant Director of Media Relations, Chris Loucks, will bring Torero fans all the live play-by-play action and the voice of Torero baseball, Jack Murray, will provide color commentary.
LOOKING FOR 100: San Diego head basketball coach Cindy Fisher is just five wins shy of earning her 100th career victory. Fisher, in her third year as the Toreros' head coach, currently boasts a 95-113 career-record over her eight seasons as a head coach between stints at the University of Wyoming and USD.
CLIMBING THE LADDER: Amber Sprague continues to put together her breakout season for the Toreros, as she has been creeping in on several USD all-time records. She currently has 434 career rebounds, just 28 shy of breaking into the top-10 list, and she has 920 career points, which is just 55 points shy of placing her 10th all-time in carer points scored. She is trying to become just the 10th USD player in the history of the program to surpass the 1,000 career points mark and just the third to do it in three seasons. She is currently averaging 14.8 points per game for her career, which is second all-time behind Jane Gilpin's (1986-88) 15.8 ppg. Sprague has also been on a tear offensively as she has scored at least four points in every game she has played in, which marks a string of 62 consecutive games she has scored.
KIVA'S BREAKOUT SEASON CONTINUES: Junior forward Kiva Herman continues her assault on opposing defenses, as she put together her seventh double-digit performance of the season with 11 points in Saturday's win over Pacific. On the season, Herman is the team's second leading scorer with a 12.6 points per game average and she is leading the team in field goal percentage with her .469 shooting percentage.
TOREROS VS. THE BIG WEST: San Diego had posted a 7-3 record against teams from the Big West Conference under head coach Cindy Fisher's tenure in San Diego, including picking up wins over Cal State Northridge and Pacific earlier this season. USD will look to improve upon that record with Friday's game against Cal State Fullerton.
TOREROS TO HAVE THREE GAMES ON TV: This season the Toreros will be featured live on TV for three games. The games against Pacific on December 15th and Gonzaga on January 17th will be aired locally on Channel 4. USD's game against Loyola Marymount University on Jan. 31 will be televised live on ESPNU.
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 service is free of charge for all who wish to watch the broadcast.
REGO'S TRIPLE-DOUBLE: San Diego senior point guard Amanda Rego recorded the first triple-double in program history in a Nov. 11 win over Toledo. Rego posted 11 points, had a team-best 13 rebounds and a game-high 10 assists. Rego came close this past season at recording a triple-double in a game against Holy Cross as she had nine points, 13 assists and a program-record 10 steals in a win over the Crusaders in the opening game of the Surf N' Slam Tournament.
TOREROS TABBED AS THE WCC PRESEASON FAVORITE: San Diego was chosen as the favorite to claim the West Coast Conference women's basketball title, edging out defending conference champion Gonzaga in the 2007-08 WCC preseason coaches poll. The Toreros, who set a program record with 21 wins and hosted a WNIT contest for the first time last season, received four first place votes and totaled 58 overall points, while the Bulldogs garnered three first place votes, and received 55 total points to finish second in the annual coaches poll. Gonzaga, who is coming off their first NCAA Tournament appearance was picked to finish second. Pepperdine came in third in the voting followed by Loyola Marymount at fourth. Saint Mary's was picked to finish fifth and San Francisco sixth. Santa Clara (seventh) and Portland (eighth) round out the preseason coaches poll.
MEET THE COACH: Head coach Cindy Fisher is entering her third 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. In only her second season at the helm of the program, Fisher orchestrated the biggest turn around in school history, a 12-game improvement from 9-19 in the 2005-06 season to a 21-9 record in 2006-07 season. The turn around was the fourth best in the nation. Under her tutelage, the Toreros placed three players on the All-WCC lists highlighted by Amanda Rego being named the WCC Co-Player of the Year. Rego and Amber Sprague both took home first-team All-WCC honors and Morgan Henderson was named to the All-WCC Freshman team. For her efforts, Fisher was named the 2007 WCC Co-Coach of the Year. 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.
THREE TOREROS OUT FOR THE SEASON: Junior guard Kelly Winther, sophomore forward Sara VanderHorst and redshirt freshman guard Hannah Morgenstern are all out for the season. Winther and VanderHorst will take a redshirt year. Winther had the second highest points-per-game average for the Toreros a year ago with 10.9 and she led the team in three-point shooting with a team-best 37 three-pointers made. VanderHorst saw limited action in 2006-07 as she scored 21 points and pulled down 11 rebounds in 16 games.
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.